Girardi | Keese

Further recalls made in the hepatitis A contamination case

By the time we first reported on the hepatitis A contamination of the Townsend Farms-brand frozen berry mix the defective product had already been linked to 34 cases.  Thought to have been because of contaminated pomegranate seeds from the Middle East, the food-safety recall soon sparked several lawsuits, which we reported on earlier last month.

Now, in continuing efforts to stop the contaminated seeds from infecting more consumers, another recall has been issued by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for specific lots of Woodstock Frozen Pomegranate Kernels which were sold in stores across San Diego County.  Although the FDA has not confirmed whether these seeds have been infected with the food-borne illness, health investigators have reason to believe that they could be linked to the imported seeds that were part of the Townsend Farms mix.

In this most recent case, the seeds are thought to have been imported from Turkey, forcing the FDA to recently announce that it would be detaining all shipments of pomegranate seeds from this country until it can be determined whether the shipments are safe for human consumption or not. 

Although it does not appear at this time that anyone has become ill as a result of eating the recently recalled product, the FDA has issued the recall as a precaution.  It’s probably a welcome relief to many people here in California who may recall how many people fell ill as a result of the Townsend Farms contamination.  Sources indicate that 127 cases were linked to the tainted seeds, 15 of which occurred here in our very own San Diego County. 

Consumers are urged this time to throw out any product believed to have been contaminated so as to mitigate the harmful effects this dangerous product has had on the nation.

Source: NBC San Diego News, "Recalled Pomegranate Product May Be Tied to Hep. A Outbreak," Monica Garske, June 29, 2013

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