BY The Western JournalMay 30, 2022
2 years ago

Not Just Peanut Butter Anymore - Now Fresh Fruit Is Being Linked to Hepatitis Outbreak

Government agencies in two countries are investigating a link between an outbreak of hepatitis A and fresh organic strawberries sold at multiple retailers.

“The FDA, along with CDC, the Public Health Agency of Canada and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, state and local partners are investigating a multi-state outbreak of hepatitis A infections in the United States and Canada potentially linked to fresh organic strawberries branded as FreshKampo and HEB, purchased between March 5, 2022, and April 25, 2022,” according to an FDA statement.

The FDA statement said anyone who bought the strawberries and froze them should not eat them.

The berries were sold at stores including Aldi, HEB, Kroger, Safeway, Sprouts Farmers Market, Trader Joe’s, Walmart, Weis Markets and WinCo Foods.

The FDA said so far 17 people have been sickened -- 15 in California and one each in Minnesota and North Dakota.

No deaths have been linked to the outbreak.

The strawberries were packaged by FreshKampo, a California-based company that produces and distributes the fruit, and the Texas-based store H-E-B, according to the Daily Mail.

“Epidemiologic and traceback data show that fresh organic strawberries sold as FreshKampo and HEB brands that were purchased between March 5, 2022, and April 25, 2022, are a likely cause of illness in this outbreak,” the FDA reported.

“The traceback investigations show that cases in California, Minnesota and Canada report having purchased fresh organic strawberries branded as FreshKampo or HEB prior to becoming ill. Illness onset dates range from March 28 – April 30, 2022,” the FDA said.

The FDA said that consumers who have strawberries in the freezer and don’t know where they bought them should dispose of them to be safe.

The FDA issued a warning that anyone who bought FreshKampo or H-E-B fresh organic strawberries between March 5, 2022, and April 25, 2022, ate them within the last two weeks and is not vaccinated against hepatitis A should see a doctor.

HEB said in a statement that the company belies its products are safe and that it “has not received or sold organic strawberries from the supplier under investigation since April 16.”

According to the CDC, hepatitis A symptoms generally appear two to seven weeks after being infected.

Symptoms often include yellow skin or eyes, not wanting to eat, an upset stomach, vomiting, stomach pain, fever, dark urine or light colored stools, diarrhea, joint pain and feeling tired.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

Written by: The Western Journal

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