USA – Multistate Outbreak of Hepatitis A Virus Infections Linked to Fresh Organic Strawberries


At a Glance
  • Reported cases: 18
  • States: 3
  • Hospitalizations: 13
  • Deaths: 0

CDC recommends that people who purchased fresh organic strawberries branded as FreshKampo or HEB during March 5, 2022, through April 15, 2022, and then froze those strawberries for later consumption take the following actions:

  • Check your freezer for these fresh organic strawberries. If you froze them to eat later, do not eat them.
  • Throw away any remaining fresh organic strawberries that you froze for later consumption. If you are unsure of what brand you purchased, when you purchased your fresh organic strawberries, or where you purchased them prior to freezing them, you should throw the strawberries away.
  • If you have eaten these organic strawberries, purchased fresh and later frozen, within the last 14 days and are not vaccinated against hepatitis A, contact your local health department or health care provider to discuss getting postexposure prophylaxis (hepatitis A vaccine or immune globulin). Getting postexposure prophylaxis within 14 days of exposure can help prevent illness.
Outbreak Information
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  • As of June 7, 2022, there are:
    • 18 outbreak-associated cases of hepatitis A reported from 3 states (California, Minnesota, and North Dakota).
    • Illnesses started on dates ranging from March 28, 2022, to May 6, 2022.
    • 13 people have been hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.
  • Epidemiologic and traceback evidence indicate that fresh organic strawberries are the likely source of this outbreak.
    • In interviews, 11/14 (79%) reported eating fresh organic strawberries.
What is Hepatitis A?

Hepatitis A is a contagious liver infection caused by the hepatitis A virus. The hepatitis A virus is found in the stool and blood of people who are infected. The hepatitis A virus is spread when someone ingests the virus, usually through close personal contact with an infected person or from eating contaminated food or drink. Hepatitis A can be prevented with a vaccine, which is recommended for all children at age one and adults at risk.

Symptoms of Hepatitis A

Human figure with ache
  • Symptoms of hepatitis A usually appear 2 to 7 weeks after exposure and can include
    • Yellow skin or eyes
    • Not wanting to eat
    • Upset stomach
    • Stomach pain
    • Throwing up
    • Fever
    • Dark urine or light-colored stools
    • Joint pain
    • Diarrhea
    • Feeling tired
  • Not everyone with hepatitis A has symptoms. Adults are more likely to have symptoms than children.
  • People who get hepatitis A may feel sick for a few weeks to several months but usually recover completely and do not have lasting liver damage. In some people, though, the illness may be so severe that the patient needs to be hospitalized.
  • In rare cases, hepatitis A can cause liver failure and even death. This is more common in older people and in people with other serious health issues, such as chronic liver disease.

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