Del Monte Canteloupe Recall Announced After Link To Salmonella

Mar 24, 2011, 12:01 by John Steele

U.S. food company Fresh Del Monte Produce announced Tuesday plans to recall 5,000 cartons of cantaloupes that the company believes may be contaminated with a form of salmonella.

According to Reuters, the company issued the recall when it received notice from U.S. regulators that about 12 reported cases of salmonella panama had been reported in connection with eating Del Monte cantaloupe. Salmonella panama can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, the elderly and others with weakened immune systems.

Del Monte has put all production from the farm that produced the cantaloupes on hold until the direct source of the outbreak can be identified. The FDA will continue to investigate where exactly the fruit became tainted.

Del Monte issued a statement, saying that the cantaloupes were sent to warehouse clubs in Alaska, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, and Washington. The infected cantaloupes are said to come in a plastic sleeve of three, with an orange handle, the Del Monte logo, and the words �3 Count, Product of Guatemala.�

This outbreak marks the twelfth documented cantaloupe-based Salmonella outbreak in the United States since 1990, with nearly 950 reported illnesses.

In Del Monte�s case this is the third recall it has issued in less than two years. In late 2009 the California State Department of Public Health warned consumers not to eat Del Monte cantaloupe due to Salmonella and the company recalled 1,120 cartons of its product. Then in 2010, Michigan Department of Agriculture testing detected the presence of Salmonella on Del Monte cantaloupe resulting in the recall of 81 cartons of cantaloupe.

Source: Reuters