FDA Expands Cantaloupe Recalls As Salmonella Infections Affects 32 States

Following a number of hospitalizations and deaths caused by salmonella in the United States, food manufacturers are actively recalling whole cantaloupes and melon products.

Almost 100 people in 32 states have become ill as a result of the infected fruits.


(Photo : Getty Images/Justin Sullivan)

Salmonella Causes Recall of Products

The number of people suffering from salmonella has more than doubled this week, prompting the recall of three more brands of whole and pre-cut cantaloupes in the United States.

The original recall by the US Food and Drug Administration covered Malichita brand whole cantaloupe, Vinyard brand pre-cut cantaloupe, and ALDI whole cantaloupe and pre-cut fruit items.

Freshness Guaranteed brand and RaceTrac brand pre-cut cantaloupes, as well as Rudy brand entire cantaloupes, were added to the list.

Jewel Marketing and Agribusiness LLC also issued a recall for “Malichita/Z Farms” melon products, which were marketed in Ohio, California, and Canada and were packaged in “wood-like” cardboard containers at retail locations.

Following similar declarations by other food companies, CF Dallas is joining the recall efforts for “fresh cut” cantaloupe goods. Eight “fruit-in-plastic” products have been recalled, including fruit salads and mixes.

Health officials said anyone who purchased the recalled fruits should throw them away and wash any surfaces that came into contact with them with hot, soapy water, or with a dishwasher.

Distributors and merchants must now rush to warn their customers and limit the harm.

“A reasonable company is always proactive and always planning for worst-case situations — especially in the food world, where there’s always the possibility of a wheel coming off the car,” said Stephen Zagor, a professor at Columbia Business School and consultant to food and restaurant businesses.

Read Also: Salmonella Enterica Strain Not Yet Seen on Migratory Wild Birds: Study

Casualities Causes by Infected Cantaloupe

Two individuals have died as a result of the infections in Minnesota, and 45 people have been hospitalized across the country.

The states with the most cases include Arizona, Missouri, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Ohio.

Arkansas, California, Colorado, Georgia, Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Maryland, Mississippi, Michigan, North Carolina, Nebraska, New Jersey, Nevada, New York, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, and Washington are also affected by the outbreak.

Most salmonella infections cause diarrhea, fever, and stomach cramps within six hours to six days of consuming contaminated food.

In most cases, illnesses last four to seven days.

Vulnerable persons, such as youngsters, the elderly, and those with compromised immune systems, may acquire serious illnesses that necessitate medical attention or hospitalization.

The number of people afflicted by the outbreak is likely to be far larger than recorded, and the outbreak may not be limited to states where symptoms are known to exist.

It usually takes three to four weeks to figure out if a sick person is part of an outbreak.

Carlota Medus, supervisor of the Foodborne Diseases Unit at the Minnesota Department of Health, advises being cautious and aware of any symptoms you may be experiencing.

“In this particular outbreak, we have seen very severe illnesses. So someone usually will present with diarrhea and fever. If somebody has a diarrhea illness that last multiple days and they’re not getting better, they should consult a health care provider,” Medus added.

Related Article: Salmonella Outbreak Spreads to 11 States; Experts Warn Against Kissing Pet Turtles

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