Is your fruit safe? Organic kiwis recalled in 14 states over fears of listeria contamination
Organic fruits may possibly be one of the better options in the market, but what if they could also be the source of an infection that affects your family?
On Aug. 8, Tuesday, a notice posted by David Oppenheimer and Company on the US FDA (Federal and Drug Administration) website confirmed that they are voluntarily recalling their organic kiwis under the brand name Zespri due to a possible listeria contamination.
It turns out that these green fruits might contain Listeria monocytogenes after the Kentucky Department of Health found traces of the bacteria in some of the fruit.
The green kiwis are sourced from New Zealand and then exported to North America. David Oppenheimer and Company tracked the issue to two particular land lots.
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There are 14 states affected by the recall—Florida, Ohio, Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Indiana, Michigan, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, New York, Tennessee, Virginia, Texas, and Wisconsin.
But before you start tossing those kiwis out, here’s the timeline for reference—the potential kiwis subject to the recall were those shipped between June 14, 2023 and July 7, 2023. After getting the notification on Aug. 3, the company stopped distributing the supplies from the mentioned grower lots.
In addition, the affected Zespri kiwis carry the UPC code 8 18849 02009 3 on their plastic containers with the affected fruit labeled with the GTIN bar code 9400 9552.
— WFLA NEWS (@WFLA) August 11, 2023
Any kiwis shipped after Aug. 7, 2023 in one-pound plastic packages with a white sticker that includes the work order number and “packed on” date are safe.
Listeria is a bacteria that can cause listeriosis, a condition that mostly affects kids, seniors, and anyone with a weak immune system. Even the healthiest individuals can experience some of the symptoms, such as headaches, fever, chills, diarrhea, and abdominal pain.
Moreso, the infection can also cause stillbirths and miscarriages in pregnant women. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that approximately 1,600 individuals catch the infection each year, with around 260 fatalities.
KIWI RECALL: One-pound packages of Zespri organic kiwis are being recalled in 14 states because they may be contaminated with listeria. The kiwis were shipped between June 14 and July 7. pic.twitter.com/0P2DJFTqvv
— CBS Evening News (@CBSEveningNews) August 10, 2023
Here’s what you need to watch out for if you’ve consumed a contaminated kiwi or any food that may have been contaminated by the bacteria:
- Flu-like symptoms
- Stiff neck
- Loss of balance
As of today, there are no reported illnesses in relation to the kiwi recall. However, the public are still advised not to eat them and dispose of them straight away.