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Fruit Grower and Packager Voluntarily Recalls Allegedly Contaminated Fruit

Image via Flickr by Muffet

According to the Washington Times, “Fruit sold at Costco, Trader Joe’s, Wal-Mart and Kroger groceries has been subjected to a voluntary recall by the Wawona Packing Co., after authorities found evidence that the produce may have been contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes.”Although the grocers have taken these products off the shelves, the nationwide U.S. food chains, along with the Wawona Packing Co., have listed news of the recall on their respective websites, warning consumers of related fruits in their home.

The alleged U.S. contamination directly impacts the following Sweet 2 Eat brand fruits: plums, peaches, nectarines, and pluots. Additionally, it is believed that the Harvest Sweet brand fruits may be affected. These brands and fruits, processed at the Wawona plant, have been included in the recall along with around three dozen other brands.

CBS Local reports, “In a statement, the company said an Australian importer found “trace amounts” on July 10 of Listeria on a shipment. A lab then confirmed the bacteria’s presence on fruit at the company plant in California. The company says it sold shipments of the fruit to Walmart, Kroger, Costco, and Trader Joe’s across the country.”

Succeeding notification, the Wawona plant, based in Cutler, California, temporarily closed the facility to sanitize affected equipment. Sanitization efforts included shutting down related packing lines and retrofitting potentially contaminated equipment. Subsequent tests for Listeria came back negative.

No reports of Listeria-related illness have surfaced. However, the list of potential complications of an infection has some consumers on alert.

“Listeria monocytogenes is an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Although healthy individuals may suffer only short-term symptoms such as high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea, Listeria infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women,” Patch notes.

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