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Red onions sicken 640 in 43 states


  • By Laurel Huster
  • |
  • Aug. 10, 2020 - 1:58 PM

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Red onions sicken 640 in 43 states

Photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is investigating a multistate outbreak of Salmonella Newport infections linked to red onions that have sickened 640 people in 43 states, including 85 people who have been hospitalized due to the illness.

The FDA’s investigation is ongoing but has identified Thomson International, Inc. of Bakersfield, California as a likely source of potentially contaminated red onions, according to a release from the FDA.

On Aug. 1, Thomson International, Inc. recalled all varieties of onions that could have come in contact with potentially contaminated red onions, due to the risk of cross-contamination.

Recalled products include red, yellow, white and sweet yellow onions shipped nationwide from May 1 to Aug. 1, sold under the following brand names: Thomson Premium, TLC Thomson International, Tender Loving Care, El Competitor, Hartley’s Best, Onions 52, Majestic, Imperial Fresh, Kroger, Utah Onions and Food Lion.

Onions were distributed to wholesalers, restaurants and retail stores in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Canada, according to the FDA.

Publix has also recalled red onions, packaged by Del Monte Fresh Produce, Inc. and sold in Georgia.

In addition, products containing the recalled onions are being identified and recalled. Giant Eagle and Taylor Farms have recalled products containing recalled onions and USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service has published a list of Ready-to-Eat Meat and Poultry Products Containing Recalled Onions .

The investigation is ongoing to determine the source of contamination and if additional products are linked to illness. The FDA said additional information will be provided as it becomes available.

The FDA recommends that consumers, restaurants and retailers should not eat, sell or serve recalled onions from Thomson International, Inc. or products containing recalled onions. If you cannot tell if your onion is part of the recall, or your food product contains recalled onions, you should not eat, sell or serve it, and should throw it out.

FDA recommends that anyone who received or suspects having received recalled onions use extra vigilance in cleaning and sanitizing any surfaces and containers that may have come in contact with recalled products to reduce the risk of cross-contamination. This includes cutting boards, slicers, countertops, refrigerators and storage bins.

Consumers who have symptoms of Salmonella infection should contact their health care provider. Most people with salmonellosis develop diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps. More severe cases of salmonellosis may include a high fever, aches, headaches, lethargy, a

rash, blood in the urine or stool and in some cases may become fatal, according to the FDA.

Those who have symptoms should contact their health care provider to report their symptoms and receive care.

To report a complaint or adverse event (illness or serious allergic reaction), you can: