Frozen organic strawberries that were imported to the U.S. from Baja California, Mexico have been linked to another outbreak of Hepatitis A.

In response, a recall was announced for Kirkland Signature 4-lb. bag Frozen Organic Whole Strawberries that were sold at Costco stores in Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Utah, Washington.

The recall was expanded to include frozen organic strawberries that were sold at Aldi, Costco, KeHE, Vital Choice Seafood, PCC Community Markets in certain states, and Trader Joe’s nationwide.

The recall involves Simply Nature Organic Strawberries (Best By 06/14/2024), Vital Choice Organic Strawberries (Best By 05/20/2024), Made With Organic Strawberries (Best Before 11/20/2024), PCC Community Markets Organic Strawberries (Best By 29/10/2024), and Trader Joe’s Organic Tropical Fruit Blend (Best By 04/25/24; 05/12/24; 05/23/24; 05/30/24; 06/07/24).

As of March 13, there are 5 cases of Hepatitis A in Washington state from this outbreak. The illnesses started on dates ranging from November 24, 2022 through December 27, 2022. Two people were hospitalized. All of the sick people reported eating frozen strawberries.

The hepatitis strain causing this outbreak is genetically identical to the strain that caused a food poisoning outbreak in 2022, which was also linked to fresh organic strawberries from Mexico, health officials said.

Hepatitis A is a contagious liver infection that is caused by a virus. Outbreaks of food poisoning involving Hepatitis A are usually caused when food is washed with water that is contaminated with sewage.

The signs of Hepatitis A usually appear 2 to 7 weeks are exposure to the virus. These symptoms may include yellow skin or eyes, not wanting to eat, upset stomach, stomach pain, throwing up, fever, dark urine or light-colored stools, joint pain, diarrhea, and feeling tired, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Frozen Organic Strawberries Linked to Hepatitis A Outbreak

Source: Outbreak Investigation of Hepatitis A Virus Infections: Frozen Strawberries (February 2023)

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