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Several Food Products Recalled Over Bacterial Contamination

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Bacterial Contamination Linked to Ground Beef, Clover Sprouts, Walnuts, and Hummus

This is a big week for bacterial contamination, with recalls of ground beef, clover sprouts, walnuts and hummus.  In fact, 1.8 million pounds of ground beef were recalled in almost 40 states for E. coli, nearly 15,000 pounds of hummus dips for Listeria, and batches of bulk and packaged walnuts for Listeria.  Raw clover sprouts contaminated with E. coli were also linked to three likely cases of illness, and seven confirmed.  About half of those who have fallen ill from the contaminated sprouts have been hospitalized.

U.S. Health Officials Investigating the Outbreaks

U.S. health officials are currently investigating the raw clover sprouts, which were served on sandwiches at Jimmy John’s and Pita Pit in the Spokane area of Washington.  In addition, the sprouts were delivered to other restaurants and some retail grocery stores in several states, including Idaho and Washington where the cases of illnesses have been established.  The sprouts were produced by Evergreen Fresh Sprouts, and consumers are urged to discard the product immediately.  The contaminated ground beef recall is of particular importance for Michiganders, as the meat derives from Detroit-based Wolverine Packing Co.  The beef was also the source of 11 cases of illness across four states, with 3 hospitalizations.  Finally, hummus dips sold at Trader Joe’s and Target were recalled for Listeria contamination, but with no cases of illness reported.

Complications of E. Coli and Listeria Contamination

Most healthy adults will recover from E. coli within a week, with the most common complaints including diarrhea and abdominal cramps.  Listeria can be a more serious food poisoning, with symptoms including muscle aches, nausea, and diarrhea.  If the illness spreads to the nervous system, it can cause stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance, and convulsions.  Adults with compromised immune systems, the very young, and pregnant women are at increased risk of serious complications from consuming foods contaminated with either of these bacteria.  If you exhibit any of these symptoms and think you may have consumed some of the contaminated recalled foods, it may be wise to contact your health care provider as soon as possible.

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    This is why it is so important that people become aware of what is happening with the food industry, the relationship between the FDA and the USDA, GMO’s and healthy solutions to not become a victim.