The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development issued a consumer advisory for Uncle John’s Old Fashioned Apple Cider produced by Uncle John’s Cider mill in St. Johns, Michigan because it may be contaminated with Shiga toxin-producing E. coli bacteria. A random sample collected by a government inspector tested positive for the pathogenic bacteria. No illnesses have been reported to date in connection with the consumption of this product.
The recall is for about 1,200 gallons of cider produced on October 17, 2015. The cider was sold at the cider mill from the retail cooler, packaged in various sized plastic jugs with a sell-by date of October 30, 2015, or served directly to consumers by the cup as cold cider, frozen cider slushes, and hot cider from October 18 through October 21, 2015. The company has stopped selling cider while awaiting more test results.
The symptoms of an E. coli infection include severe stomach cramps, diarrhea which may be bloody, and vomiting. A mild fever may also be present. Most people are pretty sick with this infection, so most do see a doctor. About 5 to 10% of those who contract this food poisoning infection develop hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), which can destroy the kidneys and be life-threatening. The symptoms of HUS include little or no urine output, pale skin, easy bruising, tiredness, and a skin rash.
Anyone who develops HUS must be hospitalized because this infection can destroy the kidneys and be life-threatening. Treating an E. coli infection with antibiotics can increase the risk that HUS will develop, so a proper diagnosis is critical. If you or a loved one is experiencing any of these symptoms, see a doctor immediately.
If you purchased any cider products produced on October 17, 2015 from Uncle John’s Cider Mill at 8714 US-27 in St. Johns, Michigan, do not consume them. Discard in a sealed container or return to the place of purchase for a refund.