Listeria prompts recall of 42 brands of frozen fruits and veggies

Local News

CRF Frozen Foods announced Tuesday that it’s expanding a voluntary recall of frozen organic and non-organic fruits and vegetables because of possible health risks.

The list of brands include: Columbia River Organics, Organic by Nature, O Organic, Panda Express, Safeway Kitchens, Great Value, Kirkland Signature, Simply Nature, and others. The company says the recalled products may have been purchased in all fifty U.S. states and in Canada.

The company issued the recall in cooperation with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention because the products might be contaminated with listeria.

KHON2 reached out to Costco and store officials said they took immediate action by removing the recalled products. They also contacted customers who may have bought the potentially contaminated products.

The Hawaii Department of Health says it is aware of the outbreak and so far, there have been no local cases of listeria that stem from this outbreak.

Listeria is a serious infection usually caused by eating food contaminated with the bacterium Listeria monocytogenes. It can cause serious, sometimes fatal infections in older adults, pregnant women, newborns and individuals with weakened immune systems, according to the CDC. Symptoms include high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, stomach pain and diarrhea.

CRF said the CDC notified it that seven people from three states have become ill and were hospitalized due to listeria. Some of these illnesses have been linked to consuming CRF-manufactured or processed products. Two of these individuals died, but listeria was not the cause of death in either person, CRF said in a statement.

The expanded recall of frozen vegetables includes all of the frozen organic and non-organic fruit and vegetable products manufactured or processed in CRF Frozen Foods’ Pasco, Washington, facility since May 1, 2014. All of the affected products have the best by dates or sell by dates between April 26, 2016 and April 26, 2018. These include about 358 consumer products sold under 42 different brands.

Products include organic and non-organic broccoli, butternut squash, carrots, cauliflower, corn, edamame, green beans, Italian beans, kale, leeks, lima beans, onions, peas, pepper strips, potatoes, potato medley, root medley, spinach, sweet potatoes, various vegetable medleys, blends and stir fry packages, blueberries, cherries, cranberries, peaches, raspberries and strawberries. For a complete list of affected products and for the UPC codes, check out the FDA site, www.fda.gov.

CRF initially recalled 15 frozen vegetable items on April 23, 2016 out of concern that they were potentially contaminated with listeria. The listeria was discovered through routine testing by state health officials in Ohio. Listeria was found in one lot of Individually Quick Frozen organic petite green peas and one lot of IQF organic white sweet cut corn. CRF suspended operations at its Pasco facility as of April 25.

CRF apologized for any concern or inconvenience the recall has caused their customers. Consumers who purchased these products may return them to the store where they were purchased for a refund and are warned not to eat these products.

Questions can go to the company at 844-483-3866.

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