In January, the U.S. Department of Agriculture announced that virtually all almonds would have to be pasteurized as of September 1. This new rule was a result of Salmonella outbreaks in 2001 and 2004 that were traced back to raw almonds.
The California Almond Board is now requesting the USDA delay the implementation until March 1, 2008 in order to ensure there’s enough pasteurization capacity available to comply, without disrupting the flow of nuts to the market.
The USDA has stated it will consider the request and publish their decision in the Federal Register by September 1.
San Francisco Gate August 7, 2007