UDATED August 23, 2012: The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has identified the southern Indiana farm responsible for producing the cantaloupes linked to the deadly salmonella outbreak that has reportedly infected 178 people in 21 states. Chamberlain Farms of Owensville has been named as one potential source for the outbreak that has killed two people and hospitalized 62 more, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. As a result, the farm has voluntarily recalled its melons, although the FDA nor the farm have released any information regarding the cause of the contamination.
Another product recall has happened, so be on the look out for fruit you may have purchased on July 15 or later. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has issued a warning to consumers to avoid eating whole cantaloupes from Burch Equipment LLC, of Faison, North Carolina, because of possible contamination with Listeria monocytogenes (L. mono).
What You Need to Know
The company shipped 580 cases of whole cantaloupes on July 15 that were delivered to retail stores in New York, Maine, and possibly other states. If you have a cantaloupe with a red label and the words “Burch Farms” and referencing PLU #4319, discard it immediately.
The cantaloupes tested positive for L. mono during sampling carried out in New York by the USDA Microbiological Data Program. Following the positive result, on July 28, Burch Equipment issued a voluntary recall of 580 cases of cantaloupes. As of yet, no illnesses have been reported that would be linked to the cantaloupes.
L. mono can result in listeriosis, which has such symptoms as fever, muscle aches, and sometimes diarrhea or other gastrointestinal problems. This disease typically affects older adults, women who are pregnant, newborns and adults with weakened immune systems.
According to a press release issued Monday, the FDA is working with state officials in North Carolina, New York and Maine to investigate the issue, and to ensure that all cantaloupes with potential for L. mono contamination will be removed from the market.
If you may have consumed some of the affected cantaloupe, consult your health care provider immediately. And if you have further questions about fresh fruit safety, call the FDA at 1-888-SAFEFOOD or email firstname.lastname@example.org.