Frozen food company recalls more than 300 fruit and vegetable products, Listeria outbreak linked to goods
What is Listeria?
Listeria is an infection usually caused by eating food contaminated with the Listeria monocytogenes bacteria. It affects mostly at-risk populations, like the elderly, pregnant women, newborns and adults with weakened immune systems. The main symptoms of listeriosis, the infection from Listeria, are usually fever and muscle aches accompanied by diarrhea and other intestinal issues. Pregnant women typically have non-specific symptoms, like fatigue and aches, but non-pregnant women may experience symptoms like stiff neck, confusion, headache, loss of balance and convulsions. Symptoms can appear up to two months after eating infected food. The disease can be life-threatening and can cause miscarriage or other complications during pregnancy.
Source: Centers for Disease Control
Washington company CRF Frozen Foods issued a voluntary recall of about 358 frozen fruit and vegetable products under 42 brands Tuesday due to potential listeria contamination. The products include both organic and traditional products, according to a release from the company listed by the Food and Drug Administration. The recall, which the company calls a precaution, is an expansion of an April 23 recall of 15 frozen vegetable items.
According to the company’s recall announcement, seven people from three states — Washington, California and Maryland — became ill and were hospitalized due to Listeria, and some of the illnesses have been linked to CRF products. The Centers for Disease Control report that eight people were infected with this strain of listeria since Sept. 2013.
The CDC reported the eight people were hospitalized and two — one from Washington and one from Maryland — died. Listeriosis was not considered the cause of death for either person.
The effected products may have been purchased in all 50 states and in several Canadian provinces.
The expanded recall includes all frozen fruit and vegetable items produced at the CRF facility in Pasco, Wash., since May 1, 2014. The effected products best by or sell by dates all fall within the range of April 26, 2016 and April 26, 2018, according to the company’s release.
Products included in the recall are organic and non-organic broccoli, butternut squash, carrots, cauliflower, corn, edamame, green beans, Italian beans, kale, leeks, lima beans, onions, peas, pepper strips, potatoes, potato medley, root medley, spinach, sweet potatoes, various vegetable medleys, blends, and stir fry packages, blueberries, cherries, cranberries, peaches, raspberries and strawberries, according to the release. For a complete list of affected products, go to http://www.fda.gov/Safety/Recalls/ucm498841.htm.
CRF brands with effected products: Bybee’s, Columbia River Organics, Northwest Growers Select and Organic by Nature.
Some of the private labels with effected products: Chef Maxwell, Earth’s Pride, Endico, Farmer’s Bounty, Live Smart, Panda Express, Pantry Essentials, Safeway Kitchens, Signature Kitchens, Trader Joe’s, USDA, Emerald Farms, Great Value, Kirkland Signature, Season’s Choice, Simply Nature, True Goodness and Wild Oats.
Operations at the Pasco plant were suspended as of April 25. All retailers who received products included in the recall have been contacted, according to the company’s release.
Consumers with questions may call (844) 483-3866 from 8 a.m.-8 p.m. Eastern Standard Time Monday through Friday.
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