March 19, 2023 | 1:18 a.m
The FDA has recalled frozen strawberries sold at Costco, Trader Joe’s and Aldi after they were linked to cases of hepatitis A.
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Frozen organic strawberries sold at several popular grocers, including Trader Joe’s and Costco, were recalled by the FDA on Friday after the fruits were linked to multiple cases of hepatitis A.
The department said at least five people in Washington state were diagnosed with the highly contagious liver infection after eating the products, which were linked to California Splendor, Inc., a San Diego-based supplier.
“Based on epidemiologic data collected by CDC, 5/5 (100%) of people who provided information about what they ate before becoming ill reported eating frozen organic strawberries,” the FDA said.
The affected strawberries were all imported from farms in Baja California, Mexico.
The strain of hepatitis A virus at the root of the illnesses is genetically identical to the strain that caused an outbreak in 2022, which was also linked to fresh organic strawberries imported from the same Mexican area, said the FDA.
Strawberries from the errant batch were disturbed nationwide and stocked on the shelves of Aldi, Costco, Trader Joe’s, KeHE, Vital Choice Seafood and PCC Community Markets.
“Consumers, restaurants and retailers should not sell, serve or eat recalled frozen strawberries. These recalled products should be returned or thrown away,” the FDA said.
California Splendor has recalled certain packages of its frozen strawberries from Costco stores throughout California.
Scenic Fruit Company of Gresham, Ore., issued a voluntary recall citing the “possible health risk.”
Symptoms of hepatitis A usually appear 15 to 50 days after consuming contaminated products.
“A virus infection includes fatigue, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, jaundice, dark urine, and pale stool,” according to the FDA. “In some cases, especially in children under the age of six, hepatitis A infection can be asymptomatic.”