Health alert issued for beef, poultry, and pork products over Cyclospora concern


Trader Joe's, the Monrovia, Calif. -based grocery chain, posted the health warning on its website for three products - tarragon chicken salad wrap, Caesar salad with chicken, and Chinese inspired salad with chicken - which were sold only in IL and 10 other Midwestern states.

A public health alert has been issued by the USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) warning consumers not consume certain pre-packaged salads and wraps from major retailers, including Walgreens, Kroger and Trader Joe's, over concerns about possible parasite contamination.

The summer has been rife with recalls and reported cyclospora infections, especially in IL.

The salads and wraps were produced between July 15 and 18 and the "Best by", "Enjoy by", "Best if sold by" or "Sell by" dates will range between July 18 and July 23.

The Cyclospora parasite causes cyclosporiasis, characterized by vomiting and "explosive" diarrhea a week or even more than a month after eating the offending food. These products should be thrown away or returned to the place of purchase. The USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service notes the incubation period for cyclospora is up to two weeks, which will last until August 6.

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A full list showing the products' labels can be seen here. Cyclosporiasis can be treated with antibiotics.

The salad and wrap products were distributed by Caito Foods LLC, which received a notice from its lettuce supplier, Fresh Express, that the chopped romaine used in some of the products was being recalled.

The products also bear establishment number "EST".

Although the U.S. Department of Agriculture said no illnesses have been reported, it's possible that some people may have been infected and don't yet realize it. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently announced that the McDonald's outbreak was tied to Fresh Express salad mix, which was distributed to McDonald's.