The government acknowledged Friday that a shipment of peanuts from the plant linked to a salmonella outbreak contained a "filthy, putrid or decomposed substance" later identified as metal fragments. The shipment was returned to the U.S. in April, months earlier than reflected in a federal tracking database.
The rejected shipment — coming across a bridge between New York and Canada — was logged by the Food and Drug Administration but never tested by federal inspectors, according to government records. The computer records show a mid-September date, just weeks before the earliest signs of the outbreak.
"The FDA failing to follow up after this incident, does that mean that products that are not good enough for a foreign country are still good enough for the USA?" asked Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Tom Harkin, D-Iowa. "That's a double standard that has deadly consequences for our citizens."