Samples of fresh jalapenos and salsa grown and produced in Georgia have tested negative for Salmonella. Georgia Commissioner of Agriculture Tommy Irvin made the announcement this afternoon after receiving the results from the Department’s food microbiology laboratory.
The Georgia Department of Agriculture tested samples from six Georgia farms and nine samples from Salsa Y’all, a Watkinsville producer that uses Georgia jalapenos. All samples were negative for Salmonella.
“I hope news of our test results will encourage grocery stores and restaurants to start placing orders for these products again,” said Commissioner Irvin.
The testing was done in response to the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) blanket recommendation that consumers avoid all fresh jalapenos and products that contain them. FDA made that recommendation after one pepper from a farm in Mexico tested positive for the Salmonella Saintpaul strain that has sickened more than 1284 people across the U.S. and Canada.
“I am fully committed to food safety,” said Irvin. “FDA unfairly condemned innocent farmers and food processors that produce safe and healthy food. That is not right. Many farms have not even begun harvesting; yet they are being forced to suffer. Putting American farmers out of business does not make our food supply safer.”