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Gold Medal Flour Recalled Due to Salmonella Outbreak

CDC warns most victims ate raw dough or batter before becoming ill

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Four types of Gold Medal brand flour have been recalled amid an outbreak of salmonella infections across multiple states, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has announced.

Although many consumers don’t think of flour as a raw food, most flour is not treated to eliminate harmful germs that can cause food poisoning, making it unsafe to eat until it is cooked or baked. Consuming raw dough or batter can result in illness, and the CDC advises against children handling or eating raw dough that is used for crafts or play clay.

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As of May 1, there had been 13 recorded cases of infection across 12 states — California, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Tennessee and Virginia — resulting in three hospitalizations. These cases spanned from Dec. 6 to March 1, and affected individuals between the ages of 12 and 81.

Health officials investigating the outbreak discovered that most people who became infected had eaten raw dough or batter made with flour prior to getting sick. Epidemiological, laboratory and traceback data identified that Gold Medal brand flour contaminated with salmonella had made people sick.

General Mills, the manufacturer, issued a recall on the following products with 'Better if Used By' dates of March 27, 2024, and March 28, 2024:

  • Gold Medal Unbleached All-Purpose Flour (5 lb bag)
  • Gold Medal Unbleached All-Purpose Flour (10 lb bag)
  • Gold Medal Bleached All-Purpose Flour (2 lb bag)
  • Gold Medal Bleached All-Purpose Flour (5 lb bag)

The CDC believes the true number of sick people in this outbreak is likely higher than the number reported, because infected people may recover without medical care and may not get tested for salmonella. Recent cases may also not be recorded because it can take up to four weeks to determine whether an illness is linked to an outbreak.

Advice to consumers

Do not use any recalled flour. Throw it away or return it to where it was purchased. If the flour was stored in another container, wash it thoroughly with warm water and soap before using it again.

Don’t eat raw dough or batter. Even a small amount of raw dough can make you sick. Always follow recipe instructions for temperature and cooking time, and use heat-treated flour for homemade play dough to prevent illness.

Clean any bowls, utensils and surfaces that have touched raw flour with warm soap and water, and include your hands.

Separate raw flour, dough and batter from foods that won’t be cooked.

Symptoms of a salmonella infection

Salmonellosis, the intestinal infection caused by the salmonella bacteria, typically leads to diarrhea, fever and stomach cramps. In severe cases, the infection can spread from the intestines to the urine, blood, bones, joints, spinal fluid or brain. Symptoms generally begin six hours to six days after infection and can last up to seven days. However, in some instances, symptoms can appear weeks after infection or remain for several weeks, according to the CDC.​


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A confirmed diagnosis is made when a lab test determines that the bacteria is present in a person’s stool, body tissue or fluids. Most people can recover without an antibiotic, but treatment is recommended for anyone with severe illness. Infected adults over age 65 (or over 50 if an underlying condition such as heart disease is present), infants; and those with a weakened immune system are also advised to take an antibiotic.​

Call a physician right away if you or a loved one have:

  • Diarrhea and a fever higher than 102 degrees;
  • Diarrhea for more than three days that is not improving;
  • Bloody diarrhea;
  • So much vomiting that liquid can’t be kept down;
  • Signs of dehydration, such as infrequent urination, feeling dizzy when standing up, or dry mouth and throat.​​

Editor's note: This story, originally published March 31, 2023, has been updated to reflect new information.

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