Health officials in Snohomish County, WA, are warning people who ate at two Taco Bell locations to monitor themselves for signs of hepatitis A infections and get vaccinated if they are not already.
“People who ate food from the Taco Bell at 2727 Broadway on May 22-23 or the Taco Tell at 303 91st Avenue NE in Lake Stevens on May 23 should contact their healthcare provider or public health,” according to the warning from the Snohomish County Health Department.
An employee who worked at both locations has tested positive for hepatitis A. The confirmed case appears to have been infected during international travel. The Snohomish County Health Department is working with the business to identify other workers who were potentially exposed and connect them with prevention information as well as resources for vaccination and post-exposure prophylaxis, as needed.
For two weeks after exposure a vaccination is effective from keeping the liver virus from developing. Therefore it is crucial for anyone who ate at the restaurants on the exposure dates to check their vaccination records.
An outbreak of Salmonella Enteritidis (ref # 1156) linked to raw cookie dough has been added to the table. On 05/23/2023, FDA issued an Outbreak Advisory. Additionally, traceback, an onsite inspection, and sample collection and analysis have been initiated.
An outbreak of Cyclospora cayetanensis (ref # 1155) in a not yet identified product has been added to the table. Traceback has been initiated.
For the investigation of illnesses with a suspect vehicle of Morel mushrooms (ref # 1152), the FDA issued an advisory on 5/19/2023.
Hepatitis A is a very contagious liver infection caused by the hepatitis A virus (HAV), resulting in an inflammation of the liver.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), state public health and regulatory officials such as the Washington State Department of Health (DOH), and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration are “investigating an outbreak of hepatitis A transmission linked to frozen organic strawberries imported from certain farms located in Baja California, Mexico, by a common supplier” (CDC, 2023).
Officials in Australia have issued a health alert after two hepatitis A cases were recently linked to a café.
The Department of Health in the state of Victoria said there was a risk of further locally acquired cases being reported in the coming weeks. No information was provided about the patients or if illness was caused by a contaminated food or food handler.
People who had food from Creatures of Habit café in the city of Springvale in Melbourne were advised to be aware of the symptoms of hepatitis A infection.
The café is located in the Springvale Homemaker Centre. A clean-up of the restaurant has been undertaken and there is no longer a risk to the public, according to officials. There are no other venues at the center implicated.
Simply Nature, Organic Strawberries, Best By 06/14/2024
Vital Choice, Organic Strawberries, BEST BY 05/20/2024
Kirkland Signature, Organic Strawberries, Best If Used By 10/08/2024
Made With, Organic Strawberries, Best Before 11/20/2024
PCC Community Markets, Organic Strawberries, Best By 29/10/2024
Trader Joe’s, Organic Tropical Fruit Blend with the following Best By dates: 04/25/24; 05/12/24; 05/23/24; 05/30/24; 06/07/24
California Splendor supplied recalled product to Costco stores in Los Angeles and Hawaii, and to two San Diego business centers. Scenic Fruit supplied recalled product to Costco, Aldi, KeHE, Vital Choice Seafood, and PCC Community Markets in specific states, and to Trader Joe’s nationwide.
Illness usually occurs within 15 to 50 days after eating or drinking contaminated food or water. Symptoms of hepatitis A virus infection include fatigue, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, jaundice, dark urine, and pale stool. In some instances, particularly in children under the age of six, hepatitis A infection may be asymptomatic.
Consumers, restaurants, and retailers should not sell, serve, or eat recalled frozen strawberries. These recalled products should be returned or thrown away.
If consumers purchased the recalled frozen organic strawberries and ate those berries in the last two weeks, and have not been vaccinated against hepatitis A, they should immediately consult with their healthcare professional to determine whether post exposure prophylaxis (PEP) is needed. PEP is recommended for unvaccinated people who have been exposed to hepatitis A virus in the last two weeks because vaccination can prevent a hepatitis A virus infection if given within 14 days of exposure. Those with evidence of previous hepatitis A vaccination or previous hepatitis A virus infection do not require PEP.
Contact your healthcare provider if you think you may have symptoms of a hepatitis A virus infection after eating these frozen organic strawberries, or if you believe that you have eaten these strawberries in the last two weeks.
May 8, 2023
As of May 5, 2023, a total of 9 outbreak-associated cases of hepatitis A have been reported from 3 states. Based on epidemiological data collected by CDC, 9/9 (100%) people who provided information about what they ate before becoming ill reported eating frozen organic strawberries.
For the investigation with the not yet identified cause of illness (ref # 1152), preliminary information reported by Gallatin City- County Health Department and the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services indicates that a food containing imported morel mushrooms consumed at a single restaurant in Montana may be the exposure of concern. This restaurant is temporarily closed. The product linked to illnesses has been updated to morel mushrooms (suspect), the case count has increased from 13 cases to 30 cases, and sample collection and analysis have been initiated. FDA is assisting in this investigation, but at this time it appears to be a localized issue and no illnesses have been identified outside of this restaurant cluster. This is an ongoing investigation and more information will be provided as it becomes available.
An Outbreak Advisory was issued for the outbreak of Salmonella Infantis (ref # 1141) linked to specific lots of General Mills Gold Medal Unbleached and Bleached All Purpose Flour. On 4/28/2023, General Mills, Inc. issued a voluntary recall.
Patagonia Food LLC, of San Luis Obispo, CA, is recalling certain frozen blackberries because of possible hepatitis A contamination.
According to the company recall posted by the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA), the recall was initiated on March 17 and is ongoing. There is concern that consumers may have the frozen fruit in their home freezers.
The recalled blackberries were distributed in California, Oregon, Nebraska, Texas, Washington and Nevada.
Reason for Recall
Patagonia Foods 3610100 Blackberry IQF Product of Mexico Net Wt. 30 LBS. (13.61 kg) Production/Lot Code 20422 Distributed By: Patagonia Foods, LLC. San Luis Obispo, CA 93401 patagoniafoods.com
Lot Code: 20422
Possible Hepatitis A in blackberries
Consumers who purchased the recalled products should immediately dispose of them and not consume them.