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Archive for Wednesday, October 18, 2000

ConAgra stops producing corn flour

October 18, 2000

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— ConAgra Foods Inc., one of the nation's biggest foodmakers, announced Tuesday that it has stopped making corn flour at an Atchison, Kan., mill because it may have received genetically modified corn that sparked a nationwide recall of some taco shell brands.

The mill, ConAgra's only corn flour plant, stopped processing corn a week ago, Con-Agra spokeswoman Karen Savinski said. ConAgra told its customers a variety of food manufacturers about the potential problem and asked them not to use the corn flour. Savinski declined to name the companies involved.

Tests for the corn variety called Starlink were being conducted and equipment at the plant was being cleaned, Savinski said.

Omaha-based ConAgra is the nation's second-largest food company behind Philip Morris' Kraft Foods, and it is the nation's largest food service manufacturer.

How much corn flour might be involved was not immediately known, and Savinski declined to say how ConAgra found out Starlink may have been delivered to the plant.

The Starlink yellow corn contains a bacterium that makes it toxic to insects. Federal officials say the health risk is remote.

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