Listeria contamination has prompted Whole Foods to recall more prepackaged products sold in salad bars, in chef’s cases and in store-prepared sandwiches and wraps.
The announcement was made on October 24 by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS).
The items which are subject to this recall were identified in a Whole foods Market establishment from Everett, Massachusetts.
Around 234 pounds of curry chicken salad have to be removed from supermarket shelves, after samples analyzed by inspectors from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health tested positive for Listeria monocytogenes.
As company officials have declared, the ready-made meals produced at the North Atlantic Kitchen facility had been packaged on October 16, 2015 and their sell-by date is of October 23, 2015.
The products had been shipped to a a warehouse, as well as to retailers from Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Massachusetts.
This follows another recall which was issued by Whole Foods, concerning classic deli pasta salad and curry chicken salad sold between October 18 and October 22, with a sell-by date of October 23.
As health authorities warn, consumption of food tainted with Listeria can trigger the onset of listeriosis, a dangerous infection which can even be deadly in some cases.
Based on estimations issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 1,600 people contract listeria every year, and around 260 succumb to the disease.
Regular symptoms of listeriosis include headaches, muscle aches, fever, nausea, diarrhea, abdominal pain, loss of balance, stiffness and convulsions.
Although usually the bacteria can be combated with antibiotics, its insidious nature allows it to develop across weeks without individuals being aware of the severity of their condition.
Among people with weakened immune systems, pregnant women, young infants and older adults the disease can be particularly hazardous.
For example, when an expectant mother suffers from listeriosis she risks miscarriage, premature delivery, stillbirth or fatal infections for the newborn. Also, seniors and immunocompromised patients develop septicemia or meningitis following such infections.
So far, Whole Foods hasn’t received any confirmed reports regarding any infections or side effects resulting from the ingestion of the contaminated products.
However, given the severe risks associated with listeriosis, consumers who have bought the products included in the recall are urged to remove them from their freezers or refrigerators and discard them immediately.
In addition, they should come to the store where they purchased those products and bring their receipt, in order to receive a full refund.
Those who are interested in further information regarding the contaminated items are advised to contact their local Whole Foods store, or Heather McCready, Public Relations Manager, at 617-492-5500, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. EST.
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