As federal officials reported new illnesses in a seven-month Listeriosis outbreak linked to packaged salads from Dole, the company clarified its recall of all products from its production plant in Springfield, Ohio.
Fifteen people across eight U.S. states had been confirmed in the outbreak as of Wednesday. The most recent case was diagnosed Jan. 3, according to a Thursday update from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. All have required hospitalization and one has died.
In Canada, public health officials report seven people across five provinces have been infected. One person died, but it has not ye been confirmed that Listeriosis was the cause.
“Laboratory tests performed on clinical isolates from ill people in Canada showed that the isolates are highly related genetically to Listeria isolates from ill people in the United States,” the CDC reports.
On Tuesday, Dole Food Co. of Westlake Village, Calif., posted a statement indicating its “voluntary withdrawal” a week earlier of all products from its Springfield facility amounted to a recall.
“Voluntary recall is a specific term used by the Food and Drug Administration. While our actions under a voluntary recall as compared to the previously reported voluntary withdrawal remain the same, we have updated our communication terminology to reference a ‘recall,’ ” according to the Dole company statement.
“We have done this with the aim of using terminology that may be more familiar to consumers.”
The federal definition of “recall” indicates a company knows consuming a product could cause “serious adverse health consequences or death.” The term “withdrawal” indicates “a minor violation that would not be subject to legal action by the FDA or which involves no violation.”
Dole reports all retailers across 23 states and three Canadian provinces that received products from the Springfield, Ohio, facility had been contacted as of Jan. 27.
Health officials did not link the Springfield facility to the outbreak — which dates back to at least July 2015 and is ongoing — until earlier this month when a lab test of a packaged salad collected in Ohio returned a positive test result for Listeria monocytogenes. That Listeria strain matched samples uploaded from outbreak victims to federal disease databases.
The recalled salads include a variety of mixes of leafy greens and other freshcut vegetables. They are packaged under the brands:
- Fresh Selections
- Simple Truth
- The Little Salad Bar
- President’s Choice Organics
Dole distributed the salads to retailers in these U.S. states and Canadian provinces:
- North Carolina
- New Jersey
- New York
- South Carolina
- New Brunswick
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