May 19, 2019

FDA Weighs in on Caito Foods Precut Melon Salmonella Outbreak

The FDA has released information about its investigation into the Caito Foods precut melon Salmonella outbreak that has now sickened at least 117 people in 32 states. The states where ill people live are Alabama, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin. Thirty-two people have been hospitalized because they are so sick. Officials are asking that anyone who has purchased precut melon make sure that it is not prepared by Caito Foods. These products include honeydew, cantaloupe, watermelon, and products made with those melons, including fruit mix, fruit platters, and fruit salads. Caito Foods recalled their products on April 12, 2019 and has temporarily stopped production while the CDC and state health departments investigate. The … [Read more...]

Precut Melon Salmonella Carrau Outbreak Sickens 117 in 10 States

The Caito Foods precut melon Salmonella Carrau outbreak has now sickened at least 117 people in 10 states, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Thirty-two people, or 36%,  have been hospitalized, which is a high percentage for a Salmonella outbreak. That's an increase of 24 patients in 11 days.  Iowa has been added to the list of states affected by this outbreak. The case count by state is: Alabama (1), Iowa (1), Illinois (7), Indiana (23), Kentucky (21), Michigan (22), Minnesota (3), Missouri (7), Ohio (31), and Wisconsin (1).  Illness onset dates range from March 4 to April 8, 2019. The patient age range is from less than one to 98 years. More than 70% of patients who have been interviewed said they ate pre-cut melon the week before they got … [Read more...]

Protect Yourself Against Listeria Outbreak Linked to Deli Meat Cheese

A deadly Listeria monocytogenes outbreak linked to unnamed deli meats and cheeses has sickened at least eight people in four states. All eight people were hospitalized. And, sadly, one person in Michigan died. Can you protect yourself and your family against this illness? This pathogen does not cause many outbreaks in the U.S., since it sickens about 2,600 people every year. Compared to Salmonella, which sickens 1,200,000 people every year in this country, it may seem like this pathogen isn't as dangerous. But that perception is wrong. Listeria monocytogenes causes serious illness and death in this country every year.  In fact, Listeria infections are the third leading cause of death from food poisoning in the U.S. One of the issues with this pathogen is that the population … [Read more...]

Why Are Deli Sliced Products Vulnerable to Listeria Monocytogenes?

The deadly Listeria monocytogenes outbreak linked to deli sliced meats and cheeses that was announced yesterday by the CDC has sickened eight people and one Michigan resident has died. For years, Food Poisoning Bulletin has told you about dozens of recalls of deli items for possible Listeria contamination. Why are these deli sliced products vulnerable to Listeria? Listeria monocytogenes is a very persistent and strong pathogen. It is found in the air, water, soil, animals, and plant material. Once it has been introduced into a facility, especially a moist and cool environment, it can become established and be very difficult to get rid of. The pathogen can hide in floor cracks, grease traps, air vents, in machines and surfaces that are difficult to clean, on food preparation … [Read more...]

Deadly Listeria Monocytogenes Outbreak Linked to Deli Meats and Cheeses

A deadly Listeria monocytogenes outbreak linked to deli sliced meats and cheeses has just been announced by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Eight people are sick in four states; one person who lived in Michigan has died. All eight patients have been hospitalized because their illnesses are so serious. The patient case count by state is: Michigan (2), New Jersey (1), New York (2), and Pennsylvania (3). Illness onset dates range from November 13, 2016 to March 4, 2019. The patient age range is from 40 to 88 years. It's unusual that illnesses that occurred more than 2 years ago are only now being announced in an outbreak, but this has happened before in Listeria monocytogenes outbreaks; most notably in the Blue Bell ice cream outbreak. Investigators use … [Read more...]

Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan Hard Hit by Precut Melon Salmonella Outbreak

People in the states of Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, and Michigan have been hard hit by the melon Salmonella outbreak that has sickened at least 93 people in 9 states. The case count in each state is: Ohio (27), Indiana (18), Kentucky (16), and Michigan (19). The other states involved include Alabama (1), Illinois (5), Minnesota (3), Missouri (3), and Wisconsin (1). The pathogen that has sickened people, Salmonella Carrau, is relatively rare in the United States. Officials are using the PulseNet system to find people who may be part of this outbreak, and more may be identified. PulseNet identified the outbreak on April 2, 2019. It makes sense that most of the victims are in those states, since the outbreak has been linked by the CDC and FDA to precut melons that were produced and … [Read more...]

How Does Salmonella Contaminate Precut Melon? Lawyer Explains

The Salmonella Carrau outbreak linked to Caito Foods precut melon has sickened at least 93 people in 9 states. We asked lawyer Brendan Flaherty: how does Salmonella contaminate precut melon? He said, "This isn't the first time that precut melons have been contaminated by pathogenic bacteria. In 2018, a Salmonella Adelaide outbreak was linked to precut melon that was also produced by Caito Foods. At least 77 people were sickened in that outbreak. And in 2017 a Salmonella Newport outbreak in Washington state and Oregon was linked to precut fruit sold at several grocery stores. "Fresh fruit is not a natural vehicle for pathogens such as Salmonella. Salmonella outbreaks are typically linked to foods like chicken.  So the fruit had to be contaminated somewhere along the chain of … [Read more...]

Salmonella Carrau Outbreak Linked to Caito Foods Precut Melons

A Salmonella Carrau outbreak is linked to Caito Foods precut melons, and has sickened at least 93 people in 9 states, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Twenty-three people are hospitalized because their illnesses are so severe. The patient case count by state is: Alabama (1), Illinois (5), Indiana (18), Kentucky (16), Michigan (19), Minnesota (3), Missouri (3), Ohio (27), and Wisconsin (1). Illness onset dates range from March 4, 2019 to March 31, 2019. The patient age range is from less than one to 98. No deaths have been reported in this outbreak. Epidemiologic and traceback evidence indicate that precut melons supplied by Caito Foods are the likely source of this outbreak. Caito recalled a huge list of precut honeydew, cantaloupe, and … [Read more...]

Previously Unreported Listeria Outbreak Associated with Caramel Apples

In the CDC's Weekly Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report for January 25, 2019, a previously unreported Listeria monocytogenes outbreak associated with prepackaged caramel apples was announced.  In late 2014 and early 2015, a large and deadly outbreak of listeriosis linked to prepackaged caramel apples sickened ate least 35 people. Thirty four patients were hospitalized. And listeriosis contributed to at least three of the seven deaths reported. Eleven of those cases were associated with pregnancy, causing three premature births and one fetal loss. In the 2017 outbreak, PulseNet found a cluster of three Listeria monocytogenes clinical isolates with indistinguishable pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) pattern combinations. That means that those three people were likely sickened … [Read more...]

More Achdut Tahini Products Recalled in Salmonella Concord Outbreak

The FDA is warning consumers to avoid eating several types of tahini in association with a Salmonella Concord outbreak. The recalled products are imported from an Israeli manufacturer, Achdut Ltd.Five people, who live in Hawaii, Michigan, and New York, are sick with the outbreak strain. The brands that company makes include Achva, Achdut, Soom, S&F, and Pepperwood brand tahini, and Soom brand Chocolate Sweet Tahini Halva Spread. The last product is sold in 12 ounce packages, has lot code 071318CH, with expiration dates ranging from April 7, 2020 to May 21, 2020. In addition, 40 pound Organic Tahini, 40 pound Premium Tahini, 16 ounce Premium Tahini, 16 ounce Organic Thin, and 11 ounce Premium Tahini from Soom foods is recalled. Also recalled is Baron's brand tahini with … [Read more...]

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