Salmonella Poisoning Outbreak Prompts Trader Joe’s Basil Recall

KFF HEALTH  NEWS – The latest food poisoning incident has sickened 13 people across multiple states and is linked to a particular organic basil product.

Recall Issued For Trader Joe’s Basil After Salmonella Poisons 13

Amaris Encinas, April 18, 2024

USA TODAY – Trader Joe’s basil is making people across the country sick, with the grocery chain store confirming Wednesday that the product was connected with a multistate salmonella outbreak.

A number of agencies, including the FDA and CDC, are looking into the outbreak, which is linked to “Infinite Herbs-brand organic basil packed in 2.5-oz clamshell packaging” sold between February 1 through April 6.

Trader Joe’s has issued a voluntary recall for packages of 2.5oz Infinite Herbs Organic Basil over concerns of Salmonella potentially impacting customers in 29 different states.

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A dozen people from seven states were infected, with seven of eight cases reporting that they “became ill” after purchasing the Trader Joe’s basil, according to the FDA. At least one person has been hospitalized.

The seven states reporting cases are:

  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Minnesota
  • Missouri
  • New Jersey
  • Rhode Island
  • Wisconsin

The FDA has found that Infinite Herbs, a Miami-based supplier had a hand in getting the “packages of organic basil” to stores.

“Your health and safety are our top priorities … I am heartbroken at the thought that any item we sold may have caused illness or discomfort,” Grego Berliavsky, Infinite Herbs CEO, said in a statement. “We simply will not rest until we can once again be confident in the safety of this product … ” READ MORE. 

What Causes Salmonella Infections, And How To Avoid Becoming Sick

The New York Times – Cashews, cantaloupe, diced onions, basil, granola bars, charcuterie — what do these very different foods have in common?

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They all have been contaminated by salmonella, which sickens an estimated 1.35 million people in the United States each year. Infections from the bacteria — the most frequently reported cause of food-borne illness, according to the Department of Agriculture — can lead to symptoms such as fever, diarrhea and abdominal pain that may last for days.

People often get sick with salmonellosis, the infection caused by the bacteria, after eating undercooked meat or other contaminated foods, but the microbes can lurk in many other places, too.

“There’s all these different pathways that can lead to human illness,” said Dr. Louise Francois Watkins, a physician with the Enteric Diseases Epidemiology Branch of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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