The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a food safety alert warning consumers to refrain from eating, serving, or selling pre-cut melon and fruits by Caito Foods.
The said pre-cut melon and mixed fruit products are linked to a potential Salmonella Carrau contamination.
The fruit products have been sold under several brands or labels by retails stores Amazon/Whole Foods, Kroger, Target, Walmart, and Trader Joe's.
The states covered by the product recall are Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.
Caito Foods has voluntarily recalled its fresh cut watermelon, fresh cut honeydew melon, fresh cut cantaloupe, and fresh cut mixed fruit containing one of these melons, produced at the company's facility in Indianapolis, according to a public service advisory by the U.S. Food and Drugs Administration.
The recall advisory said that reports of salmonella infection linked to the fruit products are being investigated by the FDA, CDC, and regulatory officials in affected states.
The CDC said that a total of 93 people from nine states have been sickened, 23 of whom were hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.
More than half of the patients are female, and majority of those who got infected were adults over 50 years old.
The multistate investigation began on April 2, when PulseNet identified the outbreak. PulseNet is the national subtyping network of public health and food regulatory agency laboratories coordinated by the CDC. Public health investigators are using the PulseNet system to identify illnesses that may be part of the Salmonella outbreak.
When a foodborne outbreak is detected, health officials assess three types of data together to try to find the likely source of the outbreak: epidemiologic, traceback data, and food and environmental testing. The investigation indicates that pre-cut melon supplied by Caito Foods of Indianapolis, Indiana is the likely source of the multistate outbreak.
Focus On Salmonella Carrau
According to the CDC, Salmonella Carrau is an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections among young children, frail or elderly people, and individuals with weakened immune systems.
Healthy persons that become infected with Salmonella often experience fever, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain. Severe illnesses such as infected aneurysms, arthritis, and endocarditis can occur in rare circumstances of Salmonella infection when the organism gets into the bloodstream of an infected person.
Caito Foods has temporarily suspended producing and distributing these products as the company and the FDA continue their investigations.
How To Dispose Recalled Food?
CDC advises the public to throw out the recalled food and other foods that came in contact with it. Put the food in a sealed bag in the garbage. If the food was stored in a reusable container, make sure to thoroughly wash the container with hot, soapy water before reusing.
If the recalled food was stored in the refrigerator, empty and clean the refrigerator to avoid contamination of other food.