July 30, 2012 — After a U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) inspection detected the bacteria listeria monocytogenes on a batch of onions produced by Gill Onions, LLC, the company issued a voluntary recall of all onions from that production day, July 18. Because the contaminated onions were used in dozens of products, this set off a chain-reaction of other recalls.
Fortunately, no illnesses have been reported in connection with the contaminated onions. However, listeria can grow in foods that are in the refrigerator, so it is possible that people currently have contaminated foods in their home. The recall involves products made with diced and slivered onions, as well as celery/onion mixes with use-by dates before August 3, 2012.
Gill Foods, LLC has notified their customers of the recall, and stores should be removing contaminated products from store shelves.
The following recalls were initiated after the Gill Foods LLC onion recall:
- Trader Joe’s BBQ Chicken salad, salsa, and balela sold in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Southern Virginia
- Cool Creations, LLC, or Fiesta Garden Fresh Salsa bean dip and salsa sold in Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma
- Wegman’s prepared foods containing chopped/diced white onions sold in Pennsylvania
- GH Foods CA, LLC products sold in California, Arizona, Nevada, Utah, and other states.
- Whole Foods Market prepared foods sold in Florida
Listeria (listeria monocytogenes) is a bacteria that causes listeriosis, a life-threatening food poisoning. Although healthy adults rarely die from the disease, young children, the elderly, and people with compromised immune systems can die from listeriosis. Pregnant women who become infected with the bacteria can also suffer a miscarriage or stillbirth. The illness typically causes severe vomiting, diarrhea, headache, abdominal pain, fever, joint stiffness, nausea, and more.
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