FDA Announces Yet Another Recall on Enoki Mushrooms Due to Listeria Concern
On April 20, 2021, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced a recall on Guan’s Mushroom Co Enoki Mushrooms for a potential Listeria monocytogenes contamination. Unfortunately, this is not the first time that Enoki Mushrooms from this source have been connected with a listeria contamination. On June 9, 2020, Enoki Mushrooms from H&C Food Inc., Guan’s Mushroom Co, and Sung Hong Foods, Inc., were declared the source of an extended Listeria Outbreak, comprised of a total of 36 connected cases, in 17 different states, resulting in 31 hospitalizations, and 4 deaths. The Outbreak began on November 23, 2016, with the first reported cases of illness linked with Enoki Mushrooms and lasted until the closure of the investigation, on December 13, 2019.
The current Listeria contamination has not yet had any reported cases of illness linked to contact with Guan’s Enoki Mushrooms. The potential contamination was discovered in a routine testing conducted by the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development which revealed the presence of Listeria monocytogenes in a 200g package of Guan’s Enoki Mushrooms. The distribution of the product was discontinued as soon as this contamination was discovered. Nevertheless, some amount of recalled product had already been distributed in various grocery and food markets in CA, NY, and PA.
The recalled Enoki Mushrooms include all Guan’s Enoki Mushrooms sold in 200g/7.05ounce bunches in clear plastic packaging with the description “Enoki Mushroom” in English, Korean and French. All recalled products bear the UPC code: 810023170303 and product code RY3428A or RY3434A in the front bottom of the packaging. Pictures of the packing can be viewed here.
Listeria monocytogenes are a type of bacteria which when ingested, can infect your gut, causing mild to severe gastrointestinal illness and in extreme cases, even death, as seen in the 2016-2019 Enoki Mushroom Listeria Outbreak. Listeriosis is most dangerous to people with weakened immune systems, the elderly, and fetuses in Utero. The best ways to avoid contracting listeriosis are to be aware of the most common foods which carry listeria monocytogenes, to properly heat and cool foods, and to avoid cross-contamination.
Health officials will continue to monitor the current situation, as well as to investigate the underlying issue of Guan Mushrooms Co’s repeated Listeria contaminations.