Rita Landgraf, Secretary
Jill Fredel, Director of Communications
302-255-9047, Pager 302-357-7498
Date: July 24, 2014
DOVER (July 24, 2014) - Fruit potentially contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes has been removed from the shelves of all locations of four Delaware food retailers, Costco, BJ's, Sam's Club, and Trader Joe's, as part of a nationwide recall. Following an U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recall notice, Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) contacted the local retailers and confirmed they had already removed the whole peaches (white and yellow), nectarines (white and yellow), plums, and pluots from sale. While no illnesses have been reported to date in Delaware or nationwide, DPH is urging consumers who purchased these fruits to throw them out or return them to the store where they were purchased.
"We know that the fruits are off the shelves," said Jamie Mack of DPH's Health Systems Protection. "But we want also to make sure that the peaches, nectarines, plums, and pluots are now out of people's refrigerators and are in the trash."
Any fruits stored in contact with the recalled products should also be disposed of out of an abundance of caution. Keeping the refrigerator or other storage areas clean is a primary defense against Listeria. Shelves, bins or other areas where recalled products were stored can be cleaned with hot water and mild dishwashing detergent, then rinsed and dried with a clean cloth or paper towel.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced the voluntary recall of peaches, nectarines, plums, and pluots packed by Wawona Packing Co. of Cutler, Calif., this weekend. According to the FDA's website, certain lots of the fruit that were packed between June 1, 2014 and July 12, 2014, may be contaminated.
Listeria can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Although healthy individuals may suffer only short-term symptoms such as high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea, Listeria infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women.
According to the FDA, the recall was initiated based on internal company testing. The company shut down the implicated packing lines, retrofitted equipment, and sanitized the facility. Retesting yielded negative results.'
For more information, Delawareans can contact DPH's Office of Food Protection at 302-744-4546; or the FDA's website at www.fda.gov/safety/recalls/ The phone number for Wawona Packing Co. is 1-888-232-9912 weekdays between 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., and its website is www.wawonapacking.com
A person who is deaf, hard-of-hearing, deaf-blind, or speech-disabled can call the DPH phone number above by using TTY services. Dial 7-1-1 or 800-232-5460 to type your conversation to a relay operator, who reads your conversation to a hearing person at DPH. The relay operator types the hearing person's spoken words back to the TTY user. To learn more about TTY availability in Delaware, visit delawarerelay.com
Delaware Health and Social Services is committed to improving the quality of the lives of Delaware's citizens by promoting health and well-being, fostering self-sufficiency, and protecting vulnerable populations. DPH, a division of DHSS, urges Delawareans to make healthier choices with the 5-2-1 Almost None campaign: eat 5 or more fruits and vegetables each day, have no more than 2 hours of recreational screen time each day (includes TV, computer, gaming), get 1 or more hours of physical activity each day, drink almost no sugary beverages.
Delaware Health and Social Services is committed to improving the quality of the lives of Delaware's citizens by promoting health and well-being, fostering self-sufficiency, and protecting vulnerable populations.