The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a “Food Safety Alert” for blackberries linked to a hepatitis A outbreak. The initial recall included fresh conventional (non-organic) blackberries purchased between Sep. 9- 30, 2019 from Fresh Thyme Farmers Market.

According to the CDC’s latest update, the outbreak is ongoing and has impacted consumers in six states. Anyone who purchased the affected blackberries during the Sep. 9 through 30 time-frame and froze the fruit should through the berries out immediately.

photo: Magova via Pexels

As of Dec. 2, 2019, the states affected by the berries include Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska and Wisconsin, with 16 cases of hepatitis A reported. While nine hospitalizations have occurred, there are currently no deaths due to the recalled blackberries.

The CDC is still investigating the outbreak. Even though the 16 current reported illnesses started between Oct. 8 and Nov. 15, 2019, it can take between two and seven weeks after exposure for symptoms to appear. Common symptoms of hepatitis A include yellow skin/eyes, upset stomach, stomach pain, vomiting, fever, dark urine, light-colored stools, diarrhea, joint pain and fatigue.

If you have the affected blackberries, from Fresh Thyme Farmers Market (sold between Sep. 9-30) or have frozen the berries, throw them away. Consumers who have already eaten the affected berries, or think they may have eaten them, and are not vaccinated against hepatitis A should contact their medical provider.

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—Erica Loop

 

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