Pentagon Claims Military Meals Sent to Storm Victims Are Safe
News in Balance:
EDITOR'S NOTE: The article below, provided by the U.S. Defense Department, states that meals sent for disaster relief do not contain recalled peanut butter products. However, a number of the recalled products use peanut paste as an ingredient. Peanut paste and peanut butter are different types of peanut products. The article does not specifically address relief meals containing peanut paste products.
WASHINGTON, Feb. 6, 2009 -- Though some of them contain peanut butter, the 660,000 packaged military meals the Defense Logistics Agency and Federal Emergency Management Agency are shipping to Kentucky and Arkansas storm victims are safe, officials here said.
The meals -- known as “Meals, Ready to Eat,” or “MREs” -- will replace the commercial meal kits that have been distributed to the storm victims.
DLA’s Defense Distribution Center in New Cumberland, Pa., is arranging shipment of the meals, scheduled for delivery today.
A recent Food and Drug Administration recall of some products containing peanut butter has prompted the Defense Logistics Agency and its industry partners to increase surveillance of the peanut butter suppliers to ensure the products are safe to consume, DLA officials said in a statement released today.
“All military MREs are safe,” the statement said. “While many of the meals contain peanut butter, they do not contain peanut butter products recalled by the Food and Drug Administration, according to the manufacturers of the MREs.”
In addition, 1.5 million self-contained packaged meals, a commercial version of the military MREs, are being readied for distribution to FEMA. Although some of these meals also contain peanut butter, officials said, the manufacturers have certified that the meals do not contain products recalled by the FDA.
Many residents of Kentucky and Arkansas have been without power for prolonged periods since a late-January storm.
(Report from a U.S. Defense Department news release.)
Related: FDA Recall of Peanut-Containing Products: Salmonella Typhimurium
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