Make Our Food Safe
06/03/2013

"Hepatitis A Outbreak Linked to Oregon Berry Farm"

The Associated Press | Mary Clare Jalonick

"WASHINGTON -- The Food and Drug Administration is investigating an outbreak of hepatitis A linked to a frozen organic berry mix sold by an Oregon company.
 
The FDA and the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Friday that 30 illnesses are linked to Townsend Farms Organic Anti-Oxidant Blend, which contains pomegranate seed mix. Illnesses were reported in Colorado, New Mexico, Nevada, Arizona and California.
 
Several of those who fell ill reported buying the berry mix at Costco, according to CDC. A Costco spokesman said Friday that the company has removed the product from stores and is attempting to contact members who purchased the product in recent months."

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"CDC said all of the victims are older than 18, ranging from 25 to 71 years old. The first illnesses were reported at the end of April.
 
The same genotype of hepatitis A was identified in an outbreak in Europe linked to frozen berries this year, the CDC said, as well as a 2012 outbreak in British Columbia related to a frozen berry blend with pomegranate seeds from Egypt. In addition to the United States and Turkey, the agency said the Townsend Farms berries also included products from Argentina and Chile."

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