Washington and Oregon Salmonella Outbreak: Health Officials Identify Eighteen Victims Sickened by Consuming Pre-Cut Fruit
At least eighteen residents of Washington and Oregon have contracted Salmonella from consuming pre-cut fruit purchased at such regional grocers as Fred Meyer, QFC, Rosauers and Central Market. The state and local health agencies have traced the illnesses to pre-cut watermelon, cantaloupe and fruit mixes containing those fruits, possibly among others. The pre-cut fruit was sold from Oct. 25th to Dec. 1st, but has been removed from store shelves – according to Oregon Health Authority spokesperson Jonathan Modie, any fruit still on hand should be discarded. He warns customers not to consume the product. Only two of the eighteen victims are Oregon residents so far, including on victim in Multnomah County and one in Wasco County. These victims both purchased the product a Fred Meyer – it was labelled as a store brand product.
The remaining sixteen victims are residents of Washington State. Since it is a multi-state outbreak, both the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are involved in the investigation.
Washington’s Department of Health (WDH) announced the outbreak on Friday, but have not yet identified the particular retail locations tied to each individual illness. That WDH is working to determine the source of the salmonella tainted fruit, and determine how it may have become contaminated.
Fred Meyer’s Jeffrey Temple confirmed that his retail outlets have all pulled the tainted fruit form the market. Other retailers have not yet made any public comment as their names have not yet been publicly linked to the outbreak – more retailers and more victims are likely to be accounted for in the Washington and Oregon Salmonella Outbreak now that health workers know about the outbreak and more individuals may provide stool samples for analysis.
For more information about the Washington and Oregon Salmonella Outbreak. Call 1-888-335-4901.