Salmonella Linked to Mexican Mangoes Prompts Import Alert

Salmonella, the dangerous, sometimes deadly food borne pathogen, has been linked to Mexican mangoes and has prompted an import alert.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is detaining imports of the tropical fruit from a Mexican packing house after the firm’s mangoes were linked to a 15-illness, multi-state Salmonella outbreak, said The Associated Press (AP). The agency announced the import late last week against mango supplier, Agricola Daniella, which maintains a number of plantations and one packing house, located in Sinaloa, Mexico. The new alert bans Agricola Daniella mangoes unless the company can provide testing proof that its mangoes are safe, said the AP.

A California importer recalled the Daniella mangoes in August after U.S. officials linked the fruit to dozens of illnesses, nationwide, said the AP. The mangoes were sold at a number of U.S. retailers between July 12 and August 29. Most illnesses appear to be clustered in California, said the AP. Now, said the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 121 illnesses have been linked to the potentially contaminated mangoes. No deaths have been reported.

The Mexican government said authorities there conducted an exhaustive review at the packing house and reported that no contamination was found there, said the AP. A connection has not been found between the Mexican mangoes and the outbreak being seen in the U.S. The outbreak involves the Salmonella Braenderup strain, the FDA said.

The FDA said it warns consumers against eating mangoes from Agricola Daniella, following its discovery of Salmonella from this producer. If consumers have recently purchased Daniella brand mangoes, the FDA advises that they should be discarded. The impacted mangoes are identified by product stickers. If a consumer is in possession of a mango and is not sure of its origin, speak to the retailer concerning brand information. If in doubt, the FDA advises the fruit should be thrown out.

On August 29, 2012, certain lots of the Daniella brand mangoes were recalled by Splendid Products, Burlingame, California and an importer in Canada initiated a voluntary recall of Daniella brand mangoes following illnesses linked to Salmonella Braenderup. Several firms that used Daniella brand mangoes supplied by Splendid Products in their cut fruit products, have recalled those products. As we’ve written, Winn Dixie
Winn-Dixie; Ready Pac
Ready Pac Foods, Inc. of Irwindale, California; and Pacific Coast
Pacific Coast Fruit Company of Portland, Oregon recalled multiple types of fresh cut processed items.

As we’ve said, about 36 percent of those who have fallen ill have required hospitalization.

It can take between six and 72 hours from consumption of a contaminated product for the symptoms of Salmonella poisoning—salmonellosis—to appear. Symptoms include diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and fever. Additional symptoms include chills, headache, nausea, and vomiting that can last up to seven days. The illness usually lasts four to seven days; however, in some, the organism can invade the bloodstream, becoming so severe that hospitalization is required. Sometimes, infection with the Salmonella pathogen can result in, and produce more severe or chronic illnesses and can leave sufferers with serious life-long health issues. Salmonellosis can be especially life threatening to those with weakened immune systems, such as infants; the elderly; and persons with compromised immune systems, such as people with HIV infection or who are undergoing chemotherapy.

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