Publix Spinach and Fresh Express Spinach recalled over listeria fears


Bagged spinach recalled due to listeria problems

Bagged spinach recalled due to listeria problems 00:20

Fresh Express, the salad mix maker behind two separate outbreaks that sickened more than 1,200 people in recent years, is now recalling two packaged spinach products sold by retailers in seven states due to possible contamination by listeria.

The recalled spinach was sold by retailers in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia, Fresh Express said in a statement. warning published by the Food and Drug Administration.

The last withdrawal by Chiquita Brands International subsidiary in Salinas, California, involves 8-ounce packages of Fresh Express Spinach with product code G332 and a best-by date of December 15 and 9-ounce packages of Publix Spinach with product code G332 and use now expired. -by date of December 14.

Image of the front of the recalled Fresh Express spinach package. US Food and Drug Administration

The recalled Fresh Express spinach carries UPC code 0 71279 13204 4 and was distributed to retailers in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and Virginia.

The recalled Publix Spinach carries UPC code 0 41415 00886 1 and was distributed in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia.

Image of a recalled Publix Spinach package. US Food and Drug Administration

The recall comes after routine sampling by the Florida Department of Agriculture found listeria in a randomly chosen package of spinach.

Listeria monocytogenes can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in the young, frail or elderly, as well as those with weakened immune systems, the recall notice warned. Healthy people may experience short-term symptoms such as fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea, and miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women.

No illnesses related to the recalled products have yet been reported. Products recalled from the market should not be consumed, but thrown away. Those who purchased the recalled vegetables can call Fresh Express at (800) 242-5472 between 8 a.m. and 7 p.m. Eastern Time. Refunds are also available at the point of purchase.

Hundreds affected by Fresh Express salads

Fresh Express is the company behind an outbreak of intestinal diseases in 2018 linked to salads sold at McDonald's restaurants that resulted in 511 confirmed cases of cyclospora infections in 15 states and New York City. All 511 people were affected after eating salads at McDonald's restaurants in the Midwest, according to to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. There were no deaths, but 24 people were hospitalized, and McDonald's switched to another salad mix supplier as a result.

The FDA confirmed the presence of cyclospora at a Fresh Express processing plant in Streamwood, Illinois.

In June 2020, Fresh Express recalled salad bags produced at the Streamwood plant due to cyclospora infections that ultimately infected 701 people in 14 states and hospitalized 38 people. according the CDC. No deaths were reported.

The following year, Fresh Express recalled 10 brands of salad mixes after listeria was found in a sample test of their products, and those items too produced at the company's Streamwood plant. The products were linked to an outbreak that hospitalized 10 people and caused one death, according the CDC.

Most recently, in April of this year, Fresh Express remembered Salad kit products produced in Morrow, Georgia, due to listeria issues, with no illnesses reported.

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