Fatal Cantaloupe Salmonella Outbreak: 2 Deaths, 28 Hospitalized – Product Recall Alert

The Centers for Disease Control announced Friday that two people have died and 28 more people have been hospitalized in a salmonella outbreak in cantaloupes across 32 states.

The Food and Drug Administration advises consumers, businesses, and restaurants to check the cantaloupes they have to see if they have been recalled or affected. If someone has a recalled cantaloupe or if they are unsure if a cantaloupe has been recalled, they are advised to throw it away or return it and sanitize any surfaces that may be contaminated.

Minnesota has the largest number of sickened people with 13 of the 99 cases reported nationwide. The most recently reported illness occurred on November 10, though the agency notes that illnesses can take three to four weeks to be determined as part of an outbreak.

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Companies recalling cantaloupe

Pacific Trellis Fruit/Dulcinea Farms on Friday voluntarily recalled nearly 4,900 cases of its “Malichita” brand whole cantaloupes due to the ongoing investigation of Malichita-brand cantaloupe for salmonella. The company distributed the cantaloupes between Oct. 18-26 in California, Illinois, Oklahoma, Texas, and Wisconsin across various supermarkets, according to the FDA. Consumers should look out for corrugated cartons with a price look-up sticker labeled as “Malichita.” Pacific said it hadn’t received any reports of people being sick as of Friday.

CF Dallas LLC, recalled packages of their Freshness Guaranteed and RaceTrac brands of fresh-cut fruit packages on Wednesday.

Sofia Produce LLC, which operates under the name Trufresh, recalled all sizes of fresh cantaloupe with a label that says “Malichita” on Nov. 15. The recalled cantaloupes were sold between Oct. 16-23.

National grocer Aldi also announced a recall on cantaloupe, cut cantaloupe, and pineapple spears in clamshell packaging with best-by dates between Oct. 27-31.

Last week, Vinyard Fruit and Vegetable Company initiated a voluntary recall of all fresh-cut cantaloupe product. The recall includes a dozen fresh-cut products containing cantaloupes distributed in Oklahoma from Oct. 30 to Nov. 10.

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Symptoms of and treatment for salmonella disease

Salmonella is a bacteria that can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems, according to the FDA. The signs of salmonella poisoning include:

  • Bloody diarrhea or diarrhea that lasts more than three days without improving
  • Diarrhea and fever over 102 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Excessive vomiting, especially if it prevents you from keeping liquids down
  • Signs of dehydration, including dry mouth and throat, infrequent peeing and feeling dizzy when standing up
  • Stomach cramps

These symptoms most commonly occur between six hours and six days after exposure. Though most people recover in four to seven days, those with weakened immune systems, including children younger than 5 and adults over 65, may experience more severe symptoms that require medical treatment or hospitalization.

Eduardo Cuevas contributed to this report. 


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