Medicine

Cut Melons at Center of New Multi-State Salmonella Outbreak

Cut Melons at Center of New Multi-State Salmonella Outbreak

Health officials say a salmonella outbreak linked to pre-cut melon has sickened 60 people in five states.

Other states also have reported illnesses - including Illinois, Indiana, Missouri and OH - with 28 sickened outside of MI.

The CDC suggests people to not eat and throw away the pre-cut melons purchased from any of the Walmart stores in Indiana, Michigan, Ohio or Missouri.

Kroger, Walmart, Jay C and Payless stores in the affected states have removed pre-cut melon products tied to the outbreak.

At least 60 people were sickened with salmonella poisoning over the weekend after consuming contaminated pre-cut melon purchased from major retailers across the country. While the illness can be serious, many people recover without the help of a doctor after four days to a week of being sick.

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The Illinois Department of Public Health is recommending that no one eat pre-cut melon bought at a Walmart store in the state, due to an outbreak of salmonella. The CDC says 21 people have been hospitalized.

Eating undercooked beef, poultry and seafood, as well as foods that contain raw eggs puts a person at high risk of contracting salmonella. Those in the affected states are advised to throw the melon away. On the other hand, in MI alone, there were 32 salmonellosis cases confirmed by the CDC. Some cases require hospitalization and the illness can be fatal. Therefore, it is recommended that people not eat pre-cut melon from Walmart stores anywhere in IL. If treatment is not started soon enough, the infection can cause death.

The CDC said that Caito Foods LLC recalled a selection of watermelon, honeydew, cantaloupe, a fruit medley on June 8. During the 2012 to 2013 season, there were 171 reported deaths, while an average flu season sees about 110.

So far only pre-cut melons have been linked, but it's important to remember food safety measures if you buy whole melons.