Del Monte has recalled several varieties of their vegetable food trays after several people from multiple states fell ill with a parasitic infection.
What are important things to know about the multistate outbreak, and what are the authorities doing about it?
Multistate Cyclospora Outbreak
Early this month, Kwik Trip immediately removed several varieties of its Del Monte vegetable trays with dill dip from the shelves. It learned that the products they have sold in several states caused cyclosporiasis among their consumers. It is an illness caused by the cyclospora parasite that affects people who ingest contaminated food or water.
At the time, Del Monte recalled the 6-ounce and 12-ounce vegetable trays with dip, which are no longer available for purchase. However, on Friday, the U.S. Food and Drugs Administration announced that Del Monte is also recalling the 28-ounce vegetable tray with dip.
However, despite these products being no longer available on the market, some of the affected products might have already reached several people’s homes, especially since the expiration dates on the said products is June 17, 2018, or a little earlier. The products affected by the recall were distributed to several retail stores in Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota.
According to reports, at least 78 people have already been affected by the multistate cyclospora outbreak.
The FDA, together with the CDC, the state, as well as local partners are working together to find the exact source of the parasite infection. In this case, the trays have several components including baby carrots, celery, cauliflower, broccoli, and the creamy dill dip. Any of these could have been the primary source of the parasite, but the FDA has so far not been able to pinpoint the culprit.
As such, investigations include every component of the tray, as well as the all the distribution and supplier information related to the affected products. This way, outbreaks of this kind could be prevented in the future. Authorities also encourage anyone who may still have the affected products to throw them away.
Cyclosporiasis is an illness that is caused by cyclospora, a microscopic parasite that can cause illnesses when ingested through contaminated food or water. Most people who get cyclosporiasis experience diarrhea and explosive bowel movements, loss of appetite, weight loss, stomach cramps, bloating, fatigue, nausea, flu-like symptoms, body aches, fever, and increased gas. However, some infected people do not get any symptoms at all. If left untreated, cyclosporiasis could last for over a month and in some cases, symptoms may relapse.
Although cyclosporiasis is not considered a life-threatening illness, it can be difficult to deal with and may cause the infected to lose several days of work. As always, proper food preparation is key to making sure that the food and beverages consumed are clean and free of pathogens like parasites and bacteria.