A public health alert has been issued by the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) warning consumers not consume certain pre-packaged salads and wraps from major retailers, including Walgreens, Kroger and Trader Joe’s, over concerns about possible parasite contamination.
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The warning, which was issued on Monday, said items containing beef, pork, and poultry salads and wraps that were produced between July 15 to July 18 with either the “best by,” “enjoy by,” “best if sold by” or “sell by” dates ranging from July 18 through July 23 should be avoided.
FSIS said it is concerned that some products may be contaminated with cyclospora, which is a parasite that causes intestinal illness as a result of consuming contaminated food or water.
The agency was alerted to the issue when Indianapolis-based food distributor Caito Foods “received notification from their lettuce supplier, Fresh Express, that the chopped romaine that is used to manufacture some of their salads and wraps was being recalled.” Caito’s products are sold by major grocery stores, including Kroger, Trader Joe’s and Walgreens, throughout the country.
News of the recall comes a few months after McDonald’s was linked to a cyclospora infection outbreak that began in May. The fast food giant’s salads are also supplied by Fresh Express. More than 286 people became ill and at least 11 have been hospitalized from that outbreak as of July 26, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
However, according to FSIS, no illnesses have been linked to the latest recall but it warns any consumer who is concerned about the illness to contact a health care provider.
“Illnesses might not have been reported yet due to the time it takes between when a person becomes ill and when the illness is reported. For Cyclospora infections this could take up to six weeks,” the agency said.