November 20, 2017

Hepatitis A Outbreak Associated with Berries Sold at Costco

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment is working with the CDC and FDA to investigate an outbreak of hepatitis A cases associated with frozen mixed berries purchased from Costco. About 30 cases of the illness have been reported from Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, and California.

Illnesses were first reported on April 29. The most recent case was reported on May 21, 2013. It takes about 30 days for symptoms to appear after exposure to the virus.

Townsend Farms Organic Antioxidant Blend frozen berries purchased from Costco appear to be the source of this outbreak. The blend includes cherries, blueberries, pomegranate seeds, raspberries, and strawberries. A formal recall has not been issued, although Costco has removed the product from its shelves. The risk of contacting hepatitis A from this product is low, but possible.

Please check your freezer to see if you have this product. If you do, throw it away in a sealed container. If you have eaten Townsend Farms Organic Antioxidant Blend frozen berries in the past 14 days, contact your health provider for an immunization. If it has been more than 14 days, an immunization will not help. Monitor yourself for signs of the illness, which include mild fever, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fatigue, pain in the upper right side of the abdomen,dark urine, and jaundice. If you have these symptoms, stay home. Do not go to work, especially if you work in food service, health care, or child care. Even mildly ill people can be very infectious.

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