Randall Foods Recalls 1.6 Million Cases of Beans

A manufacturing problem could leave consumers at risk for botulism

Source: Randall

Randall Foods has issued a recall of 1.6 million cases of its Randall-branded beans packed in glass jars because they may pose a food safety risk, the Food and Drug Administration announced Thursday

The company said that a broken temperature gauge might have resulted in the beans being processed at a temperature below what’s required for safety. This could raise the risk of the beans being contaminated with Clostridium botulinum, a bacteria that produces a toxin that causes botulism. No illnesses have been reported.

All of the beans Randall Foods produces are part of this recall. These include: black beans, garbanzo beans, great northern beans, kidney beans, navy beans, pinto beans, mixed beans, and Ultimate 4-Bean Mix.

The beans were shipped to stores in 22 states: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wisconsin. 

More on food safety

The beans are packed in 48-, 24-, and 15.4-ounce glass jars that have a tan label and are marked with “Randall” at the label’s top. The products were distributed between March 1, 2019, and May 15, 2021. The company said that regardless of lot code, any Randall-brand bean with an expiration date before Jan. 1, 2025, should not be eaten. It should be returned to the store where it was purchased for a refund. 

Many people associate Clostridium botulinum with canned foods, but it can be a concern for certain foods sold in glass jars, too, says James E. Rogers, PhD, director of food safety research and testing at Consumer Reports. And unlike cans, glass jars may not show an outward sign that something is wrong with the food inside, though Rogers says sometimes a metal lid might bulge. “When in doubt, just throw it out,” he says. 

This is the second bean recall this week. On Monday, Faribault Foods recalled cans of organic S&W and O Organics-brand black beans because of a possible risk of Clostridium botulinum contamination. 

The Clostridium botulinum toxin can attack the body’s nervous system. Symptoms can include double vision, blurred vision, drooping eyelids, slurred speech, difficulty swallowing, and muscle weakness.

Randall beans are sold by numerous retailers, according to the company’s website, including Hy-Vee, Kroger, Foodtown, and Walmart.

The Details

Products recalled: All types of Randall-branded beans (which are packaged in glass jars) with a best-buy date before Jan. 1, 2025. The recall includes all container sizes and lot numbers. (See the FDA’s list of UPC codes.)

The problem: The beans were processed at unknown temperatures. That increases the risk that they could spoil prematurely or possibly be contaminated with bacteria that causes foodborne illness, in particular Clostridium botulinum, which produces a toxin that can cause botulism.  

The fix: Check your pantry for these products, and return the recalled product to the store where it was purchased for a full refund, or toss it into the trash.

How to contact the manufacturer: Call Randall Beans at 513-793-6525.

Lisa L. Gill

As a dorky kid, I spent many a Saturday at the Bloomington, Ind., public library, scouring Consumer Reports back issues for great deals. Now, as a (much) bigger kid, that's still my job! Identifying products and services, especially in healthcare, that are safe, effective, and affordable—and highlighting those that aren't—is my top concern. Got a tip? Follow me on Twitter ( @Lisa_L_Gill)