Nationwide fruit recall affects numerous grocery chains

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CUTLER, Calif. -- If you've picked up fruit at Costco, Trader Joe's, King Soopers, City Market or Walmart stores recently, keep reading.

Wawona Packing Co. is voluntarily recalling peaches, nectarines, plums and pluots that were packed at its Cutler, California, warehouses between June 1 and July 12. Wawona believes the products may be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes.

Costco, Trader Joe's, Kroger and the Walmart Corp. -- which operates Walmart and Sam's Club stores, have all posted notices about the fruit recall on their websites. The recall is nationwide, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Internal testing at Wawona revealed the potential Listeria contamination, the FDA says. The facility was shut down and sanitized; subsequent tests have been negative for the food-borne illness.

"We are aware of no illnesses related to the consumption of these products," Wawona President Brent Smittcamp said in a statement. "By taking the precautionary step of recalling product, we will minimize even the slightest risk to public health, and that is our priority."

Trader Joe's has urged customers not to eat any of these stone fruits -- meaning fruits with large pits -- and to return them to a nearby store for a full refund.

In addition, Wegmans Food Markets, Inc. has recalled several of its baked goods that contain fruit from Wawona Packing Co. This includes cakes, pies, tarts and other pastries. For a full list, see

Listeria monocytogenes is a bacterium that can cause Listeriosis. The most common symptoms of Listeriosis are gastrointestinal issues (such as diarrhea), fever and muscle aches. Pregnant women, infants, older adults and people with a weakened immune system are particularly at risk for a more serious infection, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The CDC estimates about 1,600 illnesses and 260 deaths are caused by Listeriosis each year in the United States. Overall, outbreaks have been on the decline since 2001, but the largest in U.S. history occurred in 2011. Cantaloupes from a farm in Colorado sickened 147 people and killed nearly three dozen. The farmers responsible recently were sentenced to five years' probation, including six months of in-home detention.

Cantaloupes from Jensen Farms in Granada, Colo., sickened 147 people and killed nearly three dozen. The farmers responsible recently were sentenced to five years' probation, including six months of in-home detention.



  • Anonymous

    Thank you for this scarey information. I normally don’t buy fresh fruit or meat from these places, but I was going to – So glad I didn’t!!!

  • reading comprehension/confirmation bias?

    @Anonymous and Jeanine. Voluntary recalls are an example of a food system functioning properly. The world is scary, this story is reassuring. According to the article you just read, a large fruit packer who supplies the entire nation with stone fruit did internal testing(as I hope they would) and found a food borne pathogen. They then recalled their products voluntarily and informed both the public and their customers about a potential issue. For a seasonal agricultural product like stone fruit, it is not surprising that many large retailers would purchase from a single large packing company. We are talking about california fruit right? How many companies do you think there are that could supply the volume of stone fruit needed to service national accounts? Wegman’s, Trader Joe’s, Kroger etc… are all reputable grocers and Cosco and Walmart are relatively new to groceries. Where would Walmart buy their stone fruit to confirm your dark conspiratorial world view? This article is an example of the media doing a public service in conjunction with the companies mentioned to spread the word and avoid any issues. It is not scary. It is informative. Maybe you could try reading the information instead of making assumptions and reading between the lines.

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