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The Wall Street Journal reports that the US Department of Justice "has launched a criminal investigation into Dole Food Co. over a listeria outbreak linked to four deaths in the U.S. and Canada and multiple other illnesses."

At issue is a Dole plant in Springfield, Ohio, that earlier this year "voluntarily removed products from stores in 23 U.S. states and three Canadian provinces after salads it produced were tied to fatal illnesses." However, there are suspicions that Dole may have known about the potentially dangerous bacteria a year before shutting down the facility, and conducted testing in areas of the plant where it was less likely that listeria would be found.

The Justice Department is not commenting on the investigation, but Dole said that it has been contacted about the listeria outbreak and is cooperating.
KC's View:
Just another example, I think, of why companies not only have to do the right thing when it comes to food safety, but also have to be sure to have all their records in order. For lots of very good reasons, the government - and the consuming public - are going to have less and less patience for companies that aren't doing things right.