Frozen strawberries recalled after being linked to hepatitis A outbreak

Late Strawberries
This July 2, 2019, photo shows a tray full of just-picked strawberries at Paul Mazza’s Fruit and Vegetables in Essex, Vt. A cool, damp spring has delayed the strawberry crop in parts of northern New England, but many Fourth of July revelers should be able to indulge in strawberry shortcake. (AP Photo/Lisa Rathke) Lisa Rathke/AP

Frozen strawberries recalled after being linked to hepatitis A outbreak

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Anyone planning to indulge in some newly purchased frozen strawberries may want to put those plans on ice. It’s possible those strawberries are contaminated with hepatitis A.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, along with the Food and Drug Administration, has encouraged people to check their freezers for frozen strawberries that were recently purchased, specifically from chains Costco, Walmart, and H-E-B, and throw them out. Between Nov. 24, 2022, and April 12, nine outbreak-associated cases of hepatitis A were reported — all of which were from California, Washington, or Oregon, according to the CDC.

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The CDC interviewed the nine ill people, who answered questions about the foods they ate in the two to seven weeks before they became sick. All nine who were interviewed reported eating frozen organic strawberries.

The ages of those sick from consuming strawberries range from 38 to 64, with a median age of 56 years. So far, three of those people have been hospitalized, and no deaths have been reported.

Six of the reported cases were in Washington. One case has been reported in Oregon, and two have been reported in California, according to the FDA.

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Hepatitis A is a liver infection that is spread when someone ingests the virus, typically from close personal contact with an infected person or from eating contaminated food or drinking contaminated liquids. Symptoms of hepatitis A include loss of appetite, upset stomach, and yellow skin or yellow eyes.

Those who do have hepatitis A might feel sick for a few weeks or even for several months, but they typically recover completely from their illness. Adults are more likely to show symptoms of hepatitis A than children.

© 2023 Washington Examiner

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