CRF Frozen Foods has expanded its recall of certain frozen fruits and vegetables to include everything produced in its Pasco, WA, facility since May 2014 after learning seven people have become sick with Listeria infections. Two have died.
More than 350 products sold under 42 brands are included in the recall. The products were sold in all 50 states and Canada. Several major retailers’ brands are part of the recall, including: Costco, Costco Canada, Walmart, Safeway and Trader Joe’s.
CRF Frozen Foods posted the notice of the expanded recall at 11:45 p.m. Monday in the form of a news release. The Food and Drug Administration then picked up the recall notice, posting it on the agency website and issuing an alert to subscribers at about 10 a.m. today.
“This expanded recall of frozen vegetables includes all of the frozen organic and traditional fruit and vegetable products manufactured or processed in CRF Frozen Foods’ Pasco facility since May 1, 2014,” according to the recall notice.
“All affected products have the best by dates or sell by dates between April 26, 2016 and April 26, 2018.”
The long shelf life of the recalled frozen produce is of particular concern because consumers could have purchased the products long ago and not realize they have them in their homes.
A complete list of products and brands is included in the recall notice.
Products include organic and non-organic broccoli, butternut squash, carrots, cauliflower, corn, edamame, green beans, Italian beans, kale, leeks, lima beans, onions, peas, pepper strips, potatoes, potato medley, root medley, spinach, sweet potatoes, various vegetable medleys, blends, and stir fry packages, blueberries, cherries, cranberries, peaches, raspberries, and strawberries.
CRF had already suspended operations at its Pasco facility as of April 25 following its initial voluntary recall of a limited number of frozen organic foods. The company had notified all retailers as of the posting of the expanded recall late Monday night.
“(The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) has informed CRF Frozen Foods that the government has identified seven people from three states who became ill and were hospitalized due to Listeria. Some of these illnesses have been linked to consuming CRF-manufactured or processed products,” according to the recall notice.
“CDC also informed us that, sadly, two of these individuals later died, but that Listeria was not the cause of death in either person.”
Listeria monocytogenes is a microscopic organism that can survive very cold temperatures. It can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems.
Although healthy individuals may suffer only short-term symptoms such as high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain, and diarrhea, Listeria infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women.
“We apologize for any concern or inconvenience this expanded recall has caused our customers and consumers who enjoy our products. We are issuing this release to alert consumers not to eat these products,” according to the company’s recall notice.
“Consumers who purchased these products may return them to the store where they were purchased for a refund, or simply discard them. Consumers with questions may call the company’s consumer hotline at 844-483-3866, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Eastern Time.”
(To sign up for a free subscription to Food Safety News, click here.)© Food Safety News