Food Engineering

Cookie dough takes its toll

July 6, 2009

E. coli O157:H7 finds its way into chocolate chip cookie dough

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are warning consumers not to eat any varieties of prepackaged Nestlé Toll House refrigerated cookie dough due to the risk of contamination with E. coli O157:H7.

FDA advised consumers who may have any prepackaged, refrigerated Nestle Toll House cookie dough products in their home to throw them away. Cooking the dough is not recommended because consumers might get the bacteria on their hands and on other cooking surfaces.

Retailers, restaurateurs and personnel at other food-service operations should not sell or serve any Nestlé Toll House prepackaged, refrigerated cookie dough products subject to the recall.

Nestlé USA, which manufactures and markets the Toll House cookie dough, is fully cooperating with the ongoing investigation by the FDA and CDC. The warning is based on an ongoing epidemiological study conducted by the CDC and several state and local health departments. Since March 2009 there have been 66 reports of illness across 28 states. Twenty-five persons were hospitalized; 7 with a severe complication called Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome (HUS). No one has died.