Food Safety Alert: Salmonella Outbreak Sickens Hundreds – Here’s What You Need to do to Be Food Safe

recalled-cucumbersEven Labor Day couldn’t stop the threat of foodborne illness as an outbreak of Salmonella threatened the lives of many Americans.  On September 4, 2015, Andrew & Williamson Fresh Produce voluntarily recalled all cucumbers sold under the “Limited Edition” brand label during the period from August 1, 2015 through September 3, 2015 because they may be contaminated with Salmonella

According to the CDC, “Limited Edition” cucumbers were distributed in the states of Alaska, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Minnesota, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, Nevada, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, Texas, and Utah. They reached customers through retail, food service companies, wholesalers, and brokers.  These imported cucumbers are recalled due to Salmonella contamination and caused hundreds of illnesses. 53 ill people have been hospitalized, and one death has been reported from California.  Salmonella can be deadly.  Most people infected with Salmonella develop the following signs and symptoms 12 - 72 hours after being exposed to the bacteria:

  • Diarrhea
  • Fever
  • Abdominal cramps

Here’s what you need to do to be safe and reduce your risk of contamination

  • Do not eat recalled cucumbers.
  • If you aren’t sure if your cucumbers were recalled, ask your retailer or where you purchased the cucumbers. When in doubt, don’t eat, sell, or serve them and throw them out.
  • Contact your health care provider if you think you may have become ill from eating recalled cucumbers.

Dr. Aurora Saulo, Professor and Extension Specialist in Food Technology at the University of Hawaii at Manoa also advises “stay away from recalled cukes.  If unsure, don’t eat them.  Wash all fruits and vegetables to be eaten raw.”

September is Food Safety Education Month.  Take this helpful and practical advice to keep your family safe and healthy.

Visit the CDC for more information.