Recall of pre-cut melons sold at Whole Foods, Kroger and other stores in 9 US states; 93 people sick in a salmonella epidemic

Caito Foods LLC is voluntarily recalling pre-cut watermelon, honeydew melon, cantaloupe and fruit mix products containing one of these melons due to the potential for salmonella contamination, control centers and Disease Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration announced Friday.

A total of 93 cases were reported in the outbreak, from nine states: Alabama, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio and Wisconsin. Twenty-three people were hospitalized and no deaths were reported.

"Caito Foods has temporarily suspended the production and distribution of these products as the company and the FDA continue to investigate," the FDA said in its announcement.

The products were packaged in clear-shell plastic containers and sold under different brands depending on the point of sale. Retailers include Amazon / Whole Foods, Kroger, Target, Walmart and Trader Joe's. A complete list of recalled products is available on the FDA website.

"As it is possible that products remain in stores, this reminder concerns both retailers and consumers," announced the FDA announcement. "Consumers should not consume the product and should immediately eliminate any remaining product."

The investigation is ongoing. Caito Foods did not immediately respond to calls requesting a statement.

According to the CDC, Salmonella is causing one million cases of foodborne illness in the United States each year.

Symptoms usually start between 12 and 72 hours after consumption of the bacteria and can last from four to seven days. They include diarrhea, fever, and stomach cramps, according to the CDC. Most people heal on their own. Patients with severe diarrhea may require hospitalization. If seriously ill patients are not treated, the disease can be fatal.

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