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The audit also said the plant had no pathogen-monitoring plan and noted that one needed to be developed for the plant to be in compliance with audit standards.
Companies that bought ingredients from Peanut Corp. said they had no way of defending themselves against a supplier they accuse of deliberately breaking the rules and covering up.
"I think we did everything we could do," Kellogg Co. chief executive David Mackay told the committee.
"The issue was that (Peanut Corp.) acted in a dishonest and unethical way," he added.
Lawmakers and the Obama administration say the problem goes beyond a rogue company, and major reforms are needed. Legislation has been introduced in Congress to take food safety oversight away from the Food and Drug Administration and give it to a new agency with stronger legal powers and more funding.
Peanut Corp. produced not only peanut butter, but peanut paste, an ingredient found in foods from granola bars and dog biscuits to ice cream and cake. More than 3,490 products have been recalled, including some millions of Kellogg's Austin and Keebler peanut butter sandwich crackers.
On the Net:
FDA salmonella page: http://tinyurl.com/8srctw
Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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