Welcome to the State of California 


Date: 3/20/2008 

Number: 08-13 

Contact: Suanne Buggy or Lea Brooks  (916) 440-7259 


Products Voluntarily Recalled

Dr. Mark Horton, director of the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), today warned consumers not to eat Kowalke Family brand alfalfa sprout products because they may be contaminated with Salmonella, which can cause serious illness.  The firm is voluntarily recalling these products because the alfalfa sprout seeds used to produce them were found to be contaminated with Salmonella. No illnesses have been associated with Kowalke Family Sprout Inc. alfalfa sprouts.

(See photos of the Kowalke Family brand alfalfa sprout products.)  

"Consumers, especially young children, the elderly and people with weakened immune systems, are susceptible to serious infection when exposed to Salmonella," Horton said. "Today’s warning is part of our ongoing efforts to ensure the safety of foods sold in California."

Kowalke Family Sprouts Inc. of Los Angeles products are distributed to retail stores, including stores in the Farmer’s Markets food chain, Whole Foods and Gelson’s Supermarkets.

All alfalfa, onion/alfalfa mix, cauliflower/alfalfa mix and dinner salad mix products are affected by the recall. Alfalfa products are in 4-ounce, 8-ounce, 1-pound and 5-pound packages.   The dinner salad is in an 8-ounce package.  The cauliflower/alfalfa combo and onion/alfalfa mix are in 4-ounce packages.  The products in question have sell-by dates from March 4 through March 26. The codes are located on the front label of the packages.

CDPH continues to advise consumers about the risk of consuming raw sprouts.  Conditions required for sprout growing are ideal for rapid bacterial growth. Sprouts usually are eaten raw with no additional treatment such as cooking which eliminates bacteria that can cause disease.

Salmonella is an organism that can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems.  Healthy persons infected with Salmonella often experience fever, diarrhea (which may be bloody), nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain.  Consumers who have eaten this product and are experiencing the above symptoms should consult their health care provider.

Consumers who purchased these products should immediately discard them or return them to the point of purchase for a refund. Consumers with questions may contact Kowalke Family Sprouts Inc. at (310) 636-1924.

Last modified on: 9/10/2010 1:04 PM