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Botulism Victim in Critical Condition; Castleberry’s Food Still Out There

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Two siblings in West Texas have been diagnosed with Botulism poisoning as a result of eating Castleberry’s Austex Hot Dog Chili Sauce Original for lunch on June 28. One of the siblings who ate the Botulism contaminated canned food product is now hospitalized in critical condition. The day after eating the tainted Castleberry’s Chili Sauce the two started to show classic signs of Botulism poisoning, including paralysis on both sides of their bodies and eye troubles.

The two children were both placed on breathing machines after initially being tested at separate hospitals, only to finally end up at the same hospital with the same grim diagnosis — Botulism poisoning. The original can of contaminated Hot Dog Chili Sauce that the children ate was discarded and could not be located, although an unopened can of the same product was found in the cupboard of their home. Both cans were produced on May 7, 2007 at the Castleberry’s canning plant in Georgia.

Castleberry’s Food Company recalled over 90 varieties of their canned meat products that are possibly contaminated with Botulism. The recalled products include, but are not limited to, Hot Dog Chili Sauce, Corned Beef Hash and Beef Stew. Upwards of 20 million cans are included in the recall covering two years worth of production from the Georgia Castleberry’s plant.

Due to the large volume of canned products involved in the Castleberry’s recall, alerting consumers of the contamination has been slow. Many people still have the cans in their closets and have no idea of the potential for Botulism poisoning they face. Sadly this will only result in more and more people being poisoned and diagnosed with Botulism poisoning.

The Castleberry’s recall is the latest in a series of food product recalls and contaminations that have steadily made headlines this year. Peter Pan & Great Value brand peanut butter was recalled back in February this year after Salmonella contamination was found at the ConAgra plant that makes the peanut butter. ConAgra manufactures both the Peter Pan and Great Value brand peanut butter in a single facility in Sylvester, Georgia. Veggie Booty, a children’s snack food, was also recalled earlier this year for Salmonella contamination after nearly 100 children were reported to have become sick after eating the snack. Also at the Taste of Chicago Food Festival, the Pars Cove Restaurant booth served up a salad tainted with Salmonella resulting in over 700 people contracting food poisoning, many of which were diagnosed with Salmonella poisoning.

As food makers continue to struggle to produce safe products for consumers to eat, more and more people will end up with serious cases of food poising. Unfortunately the result can end up being much more problematic than spending a few days on the toilet — in many of these cases the end result is death.

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