CDC warns against eating pre-cut cantaloupe as salmonella outbreak expands

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Federal health officials are warning consumers to avoid any pre-cut cantaloupe if they don’t know the source as illnesses tied to the salmonella outbreak rise over 100.  

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) told consumers to avoid any pre-cut cantaloupes if they don’t know whether “Malichita” or “Rudy” brand cantaloupes were used.

The agency said in a statement Thursday that the salmonella outbreak tied to both both brands of cantaloupe is concerning given the fact that the illnesses are “severe” and that people in long-term care facilities and childcare centers are getting sick.  

CANTALOUPE RECALL: WHAT TO KNOW IF YOU HAVE THE CONTAMINATED FRUIT

To date, 117 people have fallen ill across 34 states, and over half of those people have already been hospitalized. 

About 18 of those illnesses were reported as recently as last week, according to CDC data. At least 61 people have been hospitalized, and two people have died. 

However, the agency warned that the “true number of sick people in this outbreak is likely much higher.” 

Elderly individuals, those with weakened immune systems and children under five years old are most at risk of becoming severely ill and requiring medical treatment or hospitalization, according to the CDC.  

TRUFRESH RECALLS CANTALOUPES DISTRIBUTED TO NUMEROUS US STATES, CANADA OVER POSSIBLE SALMONELLA CONTAMINATION

Within the outbreak, 14 who fell ill were living in long-term care facilities and seven children who fell ill were attending childcare centers. 

As a result, the agency is advising facilities that care for people at higher risk to not serve cantaloupes that may be contaminated.  

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has identified at least four suppliers of the potentially contaminated “Malichita” or “Rudy” brand cantaloupes. 

Several recalls were issued by companies that further processed the potentially impacted cantaloupes by using them as ingredients in new products or by repackaging them, according to the FDA. 

Aldi also issued a public notice warning its customers to avoid certain cantaloupe, cut cantaloupe and pineapple spears in clamshell packaging. 

Health officials say most people infected with Salmonella experience diarrhea, fever and stomach cramps and that symptoms only last up to seven days. 

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