Publix Customers Need To Know About This FDA Spice Raid

Any major store has the possibility of experiencing an infestation. According to Rentokill, rodents seek out shelter and easy-to-access food at retail stores across the country, and can easily get in via cracks in the wall or even through the front door. This leads to a ton of problems, like food contamination and having to destroy products that the animals have tampered with.

When the FDA raided Lyden Spice, a Miami-based spice distributor, inspectors had to deal with more than just rats. The Miami Herald reports that FDA inspectors confiscated over 25,000 bags and boxes of spices that contained MSG, sesame seeds, crushed chili, and more. The U.S. Marshals also noticed tons of animal droppings throughout the warehouse, signs of gnaw markings on the boxes of ingredients, and live and dead insects around the food. They also observed evidence of rodents living between the boxes of food. The building also serves as the operation center for Ocho Rios, a food distributor which has faced similar health code violations. Both businesses have multiple failed inspections on record, but that hasn't stopped Ocho Rios from selling their food to Publix.

What is the FDA doing to stop the violations?

Despite numerous health code violations, Ocho Rios and Lyden Spice continue to do business with major retailers like Publix, according to The Miami Herald. After failing multiple inspections, Ocho Rios restarted its food distribution back in July, which meant products like 500 packs of rodent-damaged Easter buns still made it to stores. Since the inspection, the authorities have made it clear that they intend to put a stop to these violations. "The FDA plays a critical role in safeguarding the U.S. food supply and helping to ensure that our food is not contaminated at any point during its journey along the supply chain," Acting FDA Commissioner Dr. Janet Woodcock told The Miami Herald. "We take our responsibility seriously and will continue to take action against those who threaten the safety and quality of the products we regulate as a necessary step to protect the public health and the safety of Americans."

If you plan to make a Publix run anytime soon, make sure to triple-check your spices and ensure there's no sign of rodent contamination, such as droppings. With any luck, the FDA should resolve this issue in the coming weeks, but until then, make sure to shop prudently and check for any tampered products next time you go shopping.