Thursday, September 29, 2022

U.S. Hepatitis A outbreak linked to organic strawberries sold at major retailers

The FDA instructed households and businesses such as restaurants to discard the contaminated fruit from brands FreshKampo and HEB, purchased in March or April.

• May 30, 2022
Strawberry (Credit: Modern farm)
Strawberry (Credit: Modern farm)

The United States Food and Drug Administration has ordered the recall of strawberries sold in the U.S. and Canada after a multi-state outbreak of hepatitis A.

The FDA instructed households and businesses such as restaurants to discard the contaminated fruit from brands FreshKampo and HEB, purchased in March or April.

“Currently, the potentially affected FreshKampo and HEB products are past shelf life. People who purchased FreshKampo and HEB fresh organic strawberries between March 5, 2022, and April 25, 2022, and then froze those strawberries for later consumption should not eat them,” the FDA said in a statement.

The warning came after 17 people were infected and 12 were hospitalised in the U.S. and another 10 infections and four hospitalisations were recorded in Canada. Fifteen cases were reported in California, while Minnesota and North Dakota had one case each.

“The traceback investigations show that cases in California, Minnesota, and Canada report having purchased fresh organic strawberries branded as FreshKampo or HEB prior to becoming ill,” the FDA said.

The strawberries have reportedly been sold in major retail chains, including Aldi, HEB, Kroger, Safeway, Sprouts Farmers Market, Trader Joe’s, Walmart, Weis Markets and WinCo Foods.

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