Salmonella Fears Prompt Watermelon Recall

Timco Worldwide Inc. is recalling a limited number of its Large Seedless Watermelons because the watermelons have the potential to be contaminated with the dangerous, sometimes deadly, <"">Salmonella pathogen. According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), no illnesses have been reported, to date, in connection with this occurrence.

Salmonella is an organism that can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Healthy persons infected with Salmonella often experience fever, diarrhea (which may be bloody), nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. In rare circumstances, infection with Salmonella can result in the organism getting into the bloodstream and producing more severe illnesses such as arterial infections (i.e., infected aneurysms), endocarditis, and arthritis.

The Large Seedless Watermelons included in this voluntary recall were distributed to select grocers, wholesalers, and processors in California and Texas. The Large Seedless Watermelons are stickered with the “MelonUp!” label with the PLU (Price Look Up) # 4032 and UPC # 0 33383 40240 6.

The potential for Salmonella contamination was noted after routine testing, by a distribution company, which revealed the presence of the Salmonella pathogen on the outside rind of a melon that was randomly selected for testing.

The FDA is urging consumers who have purchased Large Seedless Watermelons in the markets noted above and with the MelonUp! Label, to return them to the place of purchase for a full refund. Consumers with questions may contact the company at 1-530-757-1000 (press “4” for Food Safety) from Monday through Friday, 8:00 am to 5:00 pm, Pacific Standard Time.

The FDA noted that Timco Worldwide Inc recommends that, as with all fresh fruits and vegetables, that fresh melons be washed before cutting and/or consumption.

Salmonella, w is usually found in food and water contaminated with animal feces. Salmonella poisoning can lead to Reiter’s Syndrome, a difficult-to-treat reactive arthritis characterized by severe joint pain, irritation of the eyes, and painful urination.

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