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Food Poison Journal Food Poisoning Outbreaks and Litigation: Surveillance and Analysis

Hepatitis A Outbreak Spreads East

As of June 24, 2013, 120 people have been confirmed to have become ill from Hepatitis A after eating ‘Townsend Farms Organic Anti-oxidant Blend’ in 8 states: Arizona (16), California (62), Colorado (24), Hawaii (5), New Mexico (5), Nevada (5), Utah (2), and Wisconsin (1). [Note: The one case reported from Wisconsin resulted from exposure to the product in California.]

70 (58%) ill people are women

Ages range from 2 – 84 years;

73 (61%) of those ill were between 40 – 64 years of age.

Currently, 5 children under age 18 have been infected as part of this outbreak; of these, none were hospitalized, and none were previously vaccinated.

Illness onset dates range from 3/31/2013 – 6/14/2013

54 (45%) ill people have been hospitalized, and no deaths have been reported

Investigation by state and local health departments, FDA, and CDC is ongoing. Costco notified its members who purchased this product since late February 2013, and has removed the “Townsend Farms Organic Antioxidant Blend” frozen berry and pomegranate mix from its shelves. The product was distributed in 12 states (AZ, AK, CA, CO, HI, ID, MT, NV, NM, OR, UT, and WA); however, no cases from Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, or Washington have been linked to the outbreak at this time. One case was reported from Wisconsin, however, the product was not distributed in the state and the person was exposed in California.