Listeria Outbreak Linked To Cantaloupes
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) announced, of the 12 reported listeria cases, nine are linked to individuals who ate cantaloupe, of whom one has died. Two cases in Texas and one in Nebraska have also been linked to cantaloupe consumption, with preliminary results pointing to cantaloupe as the likely source.
Only one of the two listeriosis realted deaths in Colorado is the result of cantaloupe consumption.
Dr. Chris Urbina, the CDPHE Chief Medical Officer, says they have no idea where the melons are being sold, and till investigations into the source of the listeria outbreak continue, people are advised from avoiding all cantaloupe consumption.
The Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is liaising with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the USDA’s Food Safety Inspection Service.
Colorado usually approximates ten reported cases of listeriosis annually, and all those who fell prey to listeriosis, authorities say needed hospitalization. Some of the affected counties in Colorado, include Larimer, Boulder, Adams, Douglas, Arapahoe, Denver, El Paso, Jefferson, and Weld.
Risk of literia infection can be reduced by avoiding deli meats or reheating them to an internal temperature of 165 F, if one must have them, including refrigerated pâté or meat spreads, refrigerated smoked seafood, and soft cheeses like queso fresco and brie unless made from pasteurized milk.
Becoming infected with Listeria monocytogenes, a bacterium, causes listeriosis, an illness caused by eating contaminated food.
Contact with contaminated manure or soil can cause contamination in meats, vegetables and other foods. Raw milk and products made from it can also carry listeria.
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