Contaminated with Cyclospora: Bagged Garden Salads Sickens 122
At least 122 people have reported illness due to bagged garden salads contaminated with Cyclospora throughout the Midwest. The bagged salads were sold at three chain grocery stores: ALDI, Hy-Vee, and Jewel-Osco in a dozen states. Though the outbreak has been traced to the bagged salad product sold at ALDI, Hy-vee, and Jewel-Osco, the CDC believes that the bagged salads from these stores do not explain the number of Cyclospora infections and are continuing to investigate potential other products with Cyclospora contamination. The garden salads from ALDI were sold in Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. The garden salads from Jewel-Osco were sold in Illinois, Indiana, and Iowa. The garden salads from Hy-Vee were sold in eight states: Iowa, Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota, Minnesota, and Wisconsin. With a dozen states involved, only seven states have reported illnesses as of June 24, 2020: IA (54), IL (30), KS (1), MN (13), MO (7), NE (8), and WI (9). Out of the 122 people reported ill due to the bagged states, 19 have been hospitalized with zero deaths, and the onset of illness ranges from May 11, 2020, to June 15, 2020. As the Cyclospora infection can take between 4 and 6 weeks after consumption for symptoms to begin, the CDC hypothesizes that more cases will be reported. The FDA and CDC officially recalled Hy-Vee 12 oz. garden salads and Jewel-Osco Signature Farms Garden Salad on June 20, 2020, and ALDI Little Salad Bar Garden Salads on June 23, 2020. These recalls were made under the guidance of distributing company Fresh Express Inc. All of the recalled garden salads were sold in 12 oz. plastic bags and contained iceberg lettuce, carrots, and red cabbage. The FDA warns consumers, particularly in Midwest states with cases of Cyclospora infection, to dispose of bagged garden salads, even if you are unsure if the bagged salad is one of the recalled products. If you have eaten the recalled bagged salad, monitor your health and report any signs of a Cyclospora infection to your physician. Cyclosporiasis, the infection caused by the microscopic parasite Cyclospora, presents as typical food poisoning symptoms: explosive diarrhea, cramping, nausea, and vomiting, as well as flu-like symptoms, such as a fever, muscle aches, a headache, and fatigue.