Frozen strawberries sold at Costco, Trader Joe’s and Aldi recalled after hepatitis A infections


Frozen organic strawberries sold at Costco, Aldi, Trader Joe’s and other stores are being recalled after being linked to an outbreak of hepatitis A infections in Washington state.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is warning people not to eat, sell or serve certain brands of frozen organic strawberries after five people became infected with hepatitis A after eating them. Two people have been hospitalized.

Researchers at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that in all five cases, the sick individuals had eaten frozen strawberries sold by a common supplier. Strawberries used by this supplier were imported in 2022 from certain farms in Baja California, Mexico.

The strain of hepatitis A that caused the illnesses this year is genetically identical to the strain that caused an outbreak of hepatitis A infections last year. That outbreak was associated with fresh organic strawberries imported from Mexico and sold at various retailers in the United States.

Hepatitis A is a hardy virus that survives freezing. It persists on human hands for hours and on contaminated surfaces for days.

In response to the investigation, two suppliers have now recalled frozen organic strawberries: California Splendor of San Diego, California, has recalled certain lots of 4-pound bags of Kirkland brand frozen strawberries from Costco stores in California; Scenic Fruit Company of Gresham, Oregon, has voluntarily recalled frozen organic strawberries sold to Costco, Aldi, KeHE, Vital Choice Seafood and PCC Community Markets in select states and to Trader Joe’s across the country.

The bags of strawberries have expiration dates that range from April to November 2024. A full list of the recalled strawberries is available on the FDA’s website.

The CDC and FDA advise that if you have any of the recalled strawberries in your freezer, you should throw it away or return it to the store for a refund.

Hepatitis A virus is a virus that attacks the liver. People get sick 15 to 50 days after eating or drinking contaminated food or water. Symptoms of hepatitis A infection include fatigue, nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, yellowing of the skin or eyes, dark urine, and pale stools. Some infections, especially in children under age 6, may not cause any symptoms

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