The FDA announced a recall today for cantaloupes from Jensen Farms, after the Colorado company confirmed that one of its Rocky Ford melons had tested positive for the bacterium Listeria.
A Jensen Farms spokeswoman said today that more tests would be needed to determine whether the strain found in its produce was linked to two confirmed deaths and 16 cases of listeriosis, a potentially deadly infection, The Associated Press reported.
FDA recalls Jansen Farms cantaloupe
Amy Philpott, Jensen Farms representative said the farm had shipped more than 300,000 cases across the U.S. between July 29 and September 10 and has recalled the entire harvest.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said that it was the first Listeria outbreak tied to cantaloupe in the U.S.
The listeriosis cases have been reported in five states and Colorado authorities have told retailers to remove Jensen Farms’ cantaloupes from the shelves.
It was also reported that a couple from Denver was expected to file the first lawsuit related to the listeriosis outbreak after the husband ate a Jensen cantaloupe and got sick. The man tested positive for listeriosis and remains hospitalized.
“Jensen Farms continues to stay committed to the highest levels of food safety and maintains many third party safety audits, as we have for many years. We continually look for ways to enhance our protocol,” said Ryan Jensen, partner at Jensen Farms.
Jensen Farms Recalls Cantaloupe Due to Possible Health Risk. Press release.
Cantaloupe recall due to possible health risk
Contact Consumer, 800-267-4561, [email protected]
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – September 14, 2011 – Jensen Farms, of Holly, CO is voluntarily recalling their shipments of Rocky Ford whole cantaloupe because they have the potential to be contaminated with Listeria. The company is working with the State of Colorado and the FDA to inform consumers of this recall. L. monocytogenes is a bacterium that can contaminate foods and cause a mild non-invasive illness (called listerial gastroenteritis) or a severe, sometimes life-threatening, illness (called invasive listeriosis). Persons who have the greatest risk of experiencing listeriosis after consuming foods contaminated with L. monocytogenes are fetuses and neonates who are infected after the mother is exposed to L. monocytogenes during pregnancy, the elderly, and persons with weakened immune systems.
The whole cantaloupes in question were shipped between July 29th, 2011 and September 10th 2011, and distributed to the following states: IL, WY, TN, UT, TX, CO, MN, KS, NM, NC, MO, NE, OK, AZ, NJ, NY, PA. The whole cantaloupes have a green and white sticker that reads: Product of USA- Frontera Produce-Colorado Fresh-Rocky Ford-Cantaloupe or a gray, yellow, and green sticker that reads: Jensen Farms-Sweet Rocky Fords. If the whole cantaloupe is unlabeled, please contact your retail store for sourcing information. Jensen Farms is requesting any consumer that many have one of these cantaloupes to please destroy the products.
The recall involves only whole cantaloupe shipped by Jensen Farms, and no other commodities are involved. Jensen Farms feels it is prudent to participate in the recall as the State of Colorado has stated (in their September 12th, 2011 press release) that people at a high risk for infection should not eat whole cantaloupe from the Rocky Ford growing region.
“Jensen Farms continues to stay committed to the highest levels of food safety and maintains many third party safety audits, as we have for many years. We continually look for ways to enhance our protocol,” said Ryan Jensen, partner at Jensen Farms. Jensen Farms is a 3rd generation family farm of the Holly, Colorado community.
Consumers with questions may contact Jensen Farms via email at [email protected] or phone 1-800-267-4561 between the hours of 9am and 4pm MST.