April 20, 2024

Malichita Cantaloupe Salmonella Sundsvall Outbreak Sickens 43

A Malichita cantaloupe Salmonella Sundsvall outbreak has sickened at least 43 people in 15 states, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Seventeen people have been hospitalized because they are so sick, for a hospitalization rate of 39%, which is high for this type of outbreak. The cantaloupes in question are the Malichita brand that have been recalled.

Cantaloupe Salmonella Sundsvall Outbreak Sickens 43

The case count by state is: Arizona (7), California (1), Georgia (2), Illinois (4), Kentucky (3), Maryland (1), Minnesota (5), Missouri (5), Nebraska (4), Ohio (1), Oklahoma (1), Texas (3), Virginia (1), Washington (1), and Wisconsin (4). The patient age range is from 1 to 100 years. Illness onset dates range from October 17, 2023 to November 6, 2023. The true number of sick people in this outbreak is likely much higher than the number reported. And this outbreak will likely grow because it takes time from when a person gets sick to when they see a doctor, are tested and diagnosed, and that illness is reported to state officials.

Public health ofiicials have interviewed patients about the foods they ate the week before they got sick. Of the 29 people interviewed, 15, or 52%, said they ate cantaloupe. This percentage was significantly higher than the 19.6% of respondents in the FoodNet Population Survey taken during that same time period.

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Food Safety Lawyer and Food Poisoning Bulletin Publisher Eric Hageman

Noted food safety attorney Eric Hageman, who has successfully represented many clients in Salmonella cases, said, “Another cantaloupe outbreak. No one should get sick because they ate a piece of fruit for lunch. We hope that since this outbreak has been announced, the case count will not grow.”

DNA fingerprinting conducted on the bacteria from patient samples showed that the bacteria are closely related genetically. This means that they likely got sick from eating the same food. There is a Salmonella outbreak in Canada that has sickened at least eight people and is also linked to cantaloupes. The Salmonella strain is the same in both outbreaks. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency found Salmonella in a sample of the Malichita brand cantaloupe. Whole genome sequencing matched it to Canadian patient isolates. The CDC believes that the people in the Canadian and U.S. outbreaks likely got sick from eating cantaloupe.

There have been several recalls in relation to this outbreak. Trufresh recalled Malichita cantaloupes sold in October on November 8, 2023. That recall was expanded on November 15, 2023 to include more cantaloupes. On November 14, Vinyard Fruit and Vegetable Company recalled pre-cut fruit products, and ALDI recalled its whole cantaloupe, cantaloupe chunks, and pineapple spears.

If you bought any of these recalled products, do not eat them. You can throw them away in a secure trash can, or you can take them back to the place of purchase for a refund. Clean and sanitize your refrigerator after you discard these products, and wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water.

If you ate any of these cantaloupe products, monitor your health for the symptoms of Salmonella food poisoning. People usually get sick 12 hours, up to a week, after exposure. Symptoms can include a fever, chills, headache, nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, abdominal pain and cramps, and diarrhea that may be bloody.

If you do get sick, see your doctor because you may be part of this Malichita cantaloupe Salmonella Sundsvall outbreak. It’s important that you get tested because there are some long term complications from a Salmonella infection that can be serious, including endocarditis, reactive arthritis, irritable bowel syndrome, and high blood pressure.

Attorneys at the Pritzker Hageman Food Safety Law Firm

If you have been sickened with a Salmonella food poisoning infection, please contact our experienced attorneys for help with a possible lawsuit at 1-888-377-8900 or text us at 612-261-0856. Our firm represents clients in lawsuits against grocery stores, restaurants, and food processors.

 

 

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