Check out Walmart and Costco for possible hepatitis A contamination of the recalled frozen berries.

This week, a major frozen fruit producer issued a recall for certain berry products sold under the brand name Great Value at Walmart, as well as the Radar Farms brand sold at Costco and HEB stores. Willamette Valley Fruit, based in Salem, Oregon, initiated the voluntary recall due to potential contamination of strawberries grown in Mexico with hepatitis A.

The hepatitis A virus is highly contagious and can be found in the feces and blood of infected individuals. It spreads when someone unknowingly consumes even tiny amounts of the virus through contaminated food or drink, or through close personal contact with an infected person.

Symptoms of hepatitis A can last for up to two months and include fatigue, nausea, abdominal pain, and jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes). While most people do not experience long-term effects, the disease can be prevented with the hepatitis A vaccination.

If you have purchased any frozen fruit products from the mentioned brands, it is advisable to check for specific product details and follow the guidelines provided by the FDA regarding the recall.

How can berries get hepatitis A-contaminated?

The investigation into the possible contamination of Willamette Valley Fruits berries is ongoing, and while no specific reason has been provided, experts have shed some light on how the hepatitis A virus can potentially enter the berries. Ellen Shumaker, PhD, the director of outreach for Safe Plates in North Carolina, explains that the virus is typically transmitted through two main routes.

Firstly, if a harvest worker who has hepatitis A handles the berries without proper handwashing, the virus can be transferred to the berries through the fecal-to-oral route. This emphasizes the importance of good hygiene practices among workers to prevent contamination.

The second and more likely cause is contaminated irrigation water. If irrigation water used on the crops is contaminated with human feces, it can spray onto the berries and subsequently become frozen during preservation. Freezing helps the virus to remain on the berries, and since frozen berries are often consumed uncooked, there is no step in the process that eliminates the virus, thus posing a risk of illness.

These insights highlight the need for strict hygiene protocols and safe water sources in agricultural practices to prevent the contamination of berries and other produce.

What Brands of Frozen Berries Are Recalled?

The affected frozen fruit products were distributed through various retailers:

1. Walmart: The products included Great Value Slice Strawberries, Great Value Mixed Fruit, and Great Value Antioxidant Blend. These items were distributed to select Walmart stores across multiple states, including AR, AZ, CA, CO, HI, IA, ID, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MD, MI, MN, MO, MT, ND, NE, NV, NY, OH, OK, OR, PA, SD, TX, UT, VA, WI, WV, and WY. The distribution occurred between January 24, 2023, and June 8, 2023.

2. Costco Wholesale Stores: The specific product involved was the Rader Farms Organic Fresh Start Smoothie Blend. It was distributed to Costco Wholesale stores located in Colorado, Texas, California, and Arizona. The distribution period spanned from October 3, 2022, through June 8, 2023.

3. HEB: The affected product was the Rader Farms Organic Berry Trio, which was distributed to HEB stores in Texas. The distribution took place from July 18, 2022, through June 8, 2023.

It is important for consumers who purchased these frozen fruit products during the specified distribution periods to be aware of the recall and take appropriate precautions.

What Berry Packaging Is Recalled Looks Like

For updated information and more photos related to the recall, it is advisable to visit the official website of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The FDA provides detailed information regarding the recall, including specific product details, lot codes, and purchase dates.

It is important to note that as of now, no illnesses associated with the recalled products have been reported. However, the FDA advises consumers to check their freezers for the recalled items, refrain from consuming them, and either discard the products or return them to the store for a refund. Products with different lot codes or purchase dates are not subject to this recall.

To stay informed and access the most up-to-date information regarding the recall, please visit the FDA website. It provides comprehensive details to ensure consumer safety and provide guidance on appropriate actions to take.

What berries at Walmart have been recalled?

Great Value Sliced Strawberries are sold in 64oz (4lb) plastic bags weighing 1.81kg. The bags have a specific code associated with the recall.

Rader Farms Fresh Start Smoothie Blend is packaged in a 48oz (1.36kg) plastic bag that contains six 8oz plastic pouches. This product also has a specific code related to the recall.

For detailed information on the specific codes and additional details about the recall, it is recommended to visit the respective retailers’ websites or the FDA website. There you will find the precise codes associated with the recall, enabling you to verify if your purchased products are affected.

Which Berries Have HEB Recalled?

Rader Farms Organic Berry Trio, which was distributed to HEB stores, is packaged in 3lb (1.36kg) plastic bags. The specific code associated with the recall can be found on the FDA page along with a comprehensive list of all the recalled products.

It is worth noting that this is the third time this year that the FDA has issued a recall related to strawberries and hepatitis A. The previous recalls occurred on March 16th and 17th. For more detailed information about the recall and the specific products affected, please refer to the FDA website.

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