Microbiologist describes inspection of Ga. plant

ALBANY, Ga. (AP) — A microbiologist with the Food and Drug Administration described taking swabs that tested positive for salmonella at a south Georgia peanut processing plant.

Darcy Brillhart testified Thursday in the trial of former Peanut Corporation of America owner Stewart Parnell and two others. Brillhart said he accompanied FDA investigators for an inspection of the company's Blakely plant in January 2009.

Brillhart said two of the 92 environmental swabs done at the plant tested positive for salmonella.

Parnell and his brother, food broker Michael Parnell, are accused of shipping tainted products to customers and covering up lab tests showing they contained salmonella. Stewart Parnell and the plant's quality assurance manager, Mary Wilkerson, also are charged with obstructing justice.

A salmonella outbreak in 2008-09 killed nine and sickened more than 700.

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