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Nearly 5,000 Cartons of Salmonella-Tainted Cantaloupes Recalled after a Dozen Ilnesses Reported

Del Monte Fresh Produce N.A., Inc. (“Del Monte Fresh”) of Coral Gables, Florida is voluntarily recalling 4,992 cartons of cantaloupes, each containing 4 plastic mesh sleeves with 3 cantaloupes per sleeve, because they have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella Panama, an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Healthy persons infected with Salmonella Panama often experience fever, diarrhea (which may be bloody), nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. In rare circumstances, infection with Salmonella Panama can result in the organism getting into the bloodstream and producing more severe illnesses such as arterial infections (i.e., infected aneurysms), endocarditis and arthritis.

The cantaloupes were distributed through warehouse clubs in Alaska, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, and Washington.

The recalled products consist of cartons of cantaloupes, each containing 4 plastic beige mesh sleeves each sealed with a plastic orange handle with the Del Monte logo and indication “3 count, Product of Guatemala” with 3 cantaloupes per sleeve and were available for sale between the 10th of March and the 21st of March, 2011. The cantaloupes, grown in and shipped from Del Monte Freshs’ farm Asuncion Mita in Guatemala, have a light brown color skin on the exterior, with orange flesh. The recalled cartons of cantaloupes are dark brown cardboard with the “Del Monte” logo in red lettering and “cantaloupes” in yellow lettering on a green background. The cantaloupes have the lot codes: 02-15-24-10, 02-15-25-10, 02-15-26-10 and 02-15-28-10.

This cantaloupe recall is being implemented following a notification from the FDA that there is an epidemiologic link between the cantaloupes and approximately 12 reported cases of Salmonella Panama. Del Monte Fresh has put on hold the production and distribution of the product from the affected farm. The FDA and the Company will continue their investigations as to where in the supply chain contamination could have occurred.

  • marlene glad

    I bought the cataloupe. No symptons yet. It was about March 15. Thanks for the warning. Just ate the last one yesterday. before I got the voice mail.

  • Martin

    3/24/11 – Mine is a question rather than a comment. We purchased some of the cantalopes in question and were notified by Costco yesterday. We have eaten some and have shared some with our backyard chickens. We have not experienced any ill effects as yet but my question is about what to watch for in the chickens and their eggs. Should we avoid eating any of the eggs layed after exposure or if so for how long?
    Martin