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Salmonella tainted these herbal supplement products and sickened 130 nationwide

Screenshot from Pious Lion website.
Screenshot from Pious Lion website.

An Asheville, North Carolina company on Friday night became the latest to recall supplements containing kratom, a Southeast Asian herb, after government tests showed the presence of salmonella.

Pious Lion of Asheville voluntarily recalled two kratom powder products after samples collected by the state from a retailer tested positive for the potentially fatal bacteria, according to a news release from the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services on Friday night.

The company said in a statement Saturday that, while labs used by the state found the contaminant, an independent lab working for Pious Lion did not reveal the presence of salmonella.

At least 130 people in 38 states have been sickened, by salmonella in products containing kratom, including five in North Carolina and one in South Carolina, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and fever.

“This is a very serious issue, and consumers should take immediate action if they have these products in their homes. Consumers are advised to discard these products and are warned not to consume them,” Joe Reardon, an assistant commissioner with the department, said in the news release.

Among the numerous salmonella-tainted kratom products being recalled across the country were these by Pious Lion on Friday:

Pious Lion Pure Premium Potent Limited Release Pink Bali, 1 oz.

Pious Lion Pure Premium Potent White Maeng DA, Bright Uplifting Energy, 4 oz.

The products might come in other sizes as well, and none bear code information, Reardon said.

Wash and sanitize containers used to store the kratom, the state advised, To prevent cross-contamination, wash your hands, and any surfaces and utensils that the powder contacted.

The N.C. Department of Health and Human Services the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other states have been investigating salmonella illnesses linked to various kratom products that have since been recalled, according to the N.C. news release.

No kratom should be consumed, North Carolina and federal officials advise.

Kratom comes from a Southeast Asian tree. Kratom products have become increasingly popular because they fight pain and are available in stores, according to the Chicago Tribune.

The Drug Enforcement Administration, however, is considering placing katom in the same category of illegal drugs as heroin, the Tribune reported.

In February, the Food and Drug Administration cited new research that kratom has “opioid properties” and is associated with 44 deaths, according to The Washington Post.

“We feel confident in calling compounds found in kratom, opioids,” FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said in a statement. cited by the Post.

Joe Marusak: 704-358-5067; @jmarusak