A special FDA testing program on fresh herbs has documented the first confirmed evidence of the Cyclospora parasite in U.S. produce.
The Food and Drug Administration found the microscopic parasite on fresh cilantro at a U.S. distribution facility in July. In a follow-up investigation, the FDA found Cyclospora on fresh cilantro at a farm. The federal agency worked with state and local officials to embargo the cilantro. Staff from FDA have been working with the farmer on “corrective actions geared toward common routes of contamination,” according to a constituent update from the agency.
“Although this is the first confirmed evidence of the presence of Cyclospora in domestic produce, FDA is currently unaware of illnesses associated with the product, and traceforward efforts do not indicate there are any connections between this domestic finding of contaminated cilantro and multistate outbreaks of Cyclospora illnesses investigated this spring and summer,” the agency reported.
Those Cyclospora outbreaks were linked to Del Monte vegetable-dip trays and salads made with Fresh Express chopped lettuce and carrots that were served at McDonald’s restaurants.