Your Costco Beans Could Be Served With A Side Of Botulism

Here's a little song for you. "Beans, beans, the musical fruit. The more you eat, the more you toot. The more you toot, the better you feel—unless you're inadvertently exposed to Clostridium botulinum bacteria, in which case you'll suffer double vision, drooping eyelids, slurred speech, difficulty swallowing, muscle weakness, and possibly death."

Did you enjoy my song? It's inspired by true events. Eat This, Not That! reports that, on Friday, Costco issued a nationwide recall of black beans. The website initially reported on a post from Reddit user Wisteria98122. The Redditor wrote "Serious safety recall on Costco black beans. C botulinum is a huge deal." They then posted a screenshot of an email they received from Costco, which read:

"Costco records indicate that you, or one of your add-on members, have purchased item #664511 S&W Organic Black Beans between February 19, 2021 and April 20, 2021.

Faribault Foods, Inc., in conjunction with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is voluntarily recalling these 15-ounce cans of S&W Organic Black Beans because the cans may have a compromised hermetic seal. The compromised hermetic seal can affect can integrity and may cause the cans to leak, bloat or allow bacteria (such as Clostridium botulinum) to grow inside the product."

Eat This, Not That! then found the Costco bean recall advisory on Faribault Foods, Inc.'s website, where they go on to explain that Clostridium botulinum can cause botulism, which "could lead to serious illness" anywhere between six hours and two weeks from eating the contaminated food. The company wrote that symptoms "may include double vision, blurred vision, drooping eyelids, slurred speech, difficulty swallowing, and muscle weakness," as well as paralysis of the breathing muscles, "which can result in death unless assistance with breathing... is provided." The recall applies to the following labels of 15-ounce black bean cans:

  • S&W Organic Black Beans
  • O Organic Organic Black Beans
  • O Organic Organic Chili Beans
  • No botulism cases have been linked to the beans at this time, making the recall a largely cautionary measure. Still, botulism is no joke, so be sure to check the lot codes on Faribault's website and return any affected products to the store ASAP. You can't bean too careful.