About a month ago, a massive avocado recall has been announced affecting six states, including organic ones, produced by a major California producer, due to concerns that they may be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes.
The recall was issued by the Henry Avocado company following the inspection at its California packing facility. It led to “environmental samples” of its products tested positive, but the company stated that there were no reported illnesses linked to the recall.
Listeria infects about 1,600 people annually and kills around 260.
According to the press release by the company, Listeria monocytogenes is an organism causes serious health issues and can even lead to fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and people with weakened immune systems.
It causes short-term symptoms in healthy individuals like headaches, nausea, diarrhea, abdominal pain, high fever, and stiffness, but it can result in miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women.
According to the Mayo Clinic, the first symptoms might appear a few days after one has consumed a contaminated food item, but it may even take as long as 30 days or more before the first signs and symptoms of infection begin.
In case the listeria infection spreads to the nervous system, it might cause signs and symptoms such as a loss of balance, convulsions, stiff neck, headaches, confusion, and changes in alertness.
The recalled avocados, conventional and organic, have been sent to retailers in six states: California, Florida, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Arizona, and Wisconsin.
The labels of the conventional ones feature the words “Bravocado”, while the organic varieties are labeled “organic” and include “California” on the sticker.
The company stated that people who have bought any recalled avocados are urged not to consume them, but to discard them or return them to the place of purchase in order to receive a full refund.
Last year, listeria was found in millions of pounds of pre-made salads and meals, all of which were linked to possible salmonella and listeria contamination at one California processing plant.
In case you have eaten foods suspected to be infected with listeria, pay close attention to any possible signs or symptoms of illness, and contact your doctor if you experience fever, muscle aches, nausea or diarrhea.