Food and drug administration
Frozen organic strawberries sold in stores across the United States, including Costco, Aldi and Trader Joe’s, have been recalled due to the product’s potential link to an outbreak of hepatitis A infections in Washington State.
The Food and Drug Administration is advising people not to eat certain brands of frozen strawberries after five people who ate frozen strawberries last year later became ill. Two people were hospitalized, according to the federal agency.
An FDA and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention investigation found that all five infected people had purchased the same brand of frozen organic strawberries before they fell ill. These berries, which came from a common supplier who imported them from certain farms in Baja California, Mexico, “are the likely source of this outbreak,” the CDC said.
Two companies have since issued voluntary recalls in response to the investigation. California Splendor of San Diego has recalled specific lots of 4-pound bags of Kirkland Signature Frozen Organic Whole Strawberries that were sold at Costco stores in Los Angeles, Hawaii and two San Diego business centers.
Scenic Fruit Company, based in Gresham, Oregon, recalled frozen organic strawberries sold in several states – at Costco, Aldi, KeHE, Vital Choice Seafood and PCC Community Markets. The company also recalled a frozen organic tropical fruit mix, which includes strawberries, sold at Trader Joe’s stores nationwide.
The recall applies to frozen products sold under the following brands: Simply Nature, Vital Choice, Kirkland Signature, Made With, PCC Community Markets and Trader Joe’s.
The FDA is urging consumers to destroy these products or return them to their local store for a refund “out of an abundance of caution.”
Hepatitis A is a contagious infection of the liver, according to the CDC, that is often spread through close contact with an infected person or by eating contaminated food or drink. Symptoms, which can take up to seven weeks to appear, can include vomiting, stomach pain, dark urine or pale stools, diarrhea and fatigue.