Avocados from a major California producer, including organic ones, have been recalled over concerns that the fruits may be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes, a report from USA Today said.
The recall was issued on Saturday by the Henry Avocado company after an inspection at its California packing facility led to “environmental samples” of its products testing positive, the company said in a statement, adding that there were no reported illnesses associated with the recall.
Listeria monocytogenes is an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems, a press release from the company said.
“Although healthy individuals may suffer only short-term symptoms such as high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea, Listeria infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women,” it continued.
The avocados in question are of both the conventional and organic varieties and were sent to retailers in six states: California, Florida, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Arizona and Wisconsin.
The conventional avocados feature the words “Bravocado” on their stickers while the organic varieties are labeled “organic” and include “California” on the sticker (the barcode on the stickers starts with the number 9). Mexican-grown avocados distributed by the company are not included in the recall.
“We are voluntarily recalling our products and taking every action possible to ensure the safety of consumers who eat our avocados,” Henry Avocado President Phil Henry said.
“Consumers who have purchased any recalled avocados are urged not to consume them, but to discard them or return them to the place of purchase for a full refund,” the company’s statement continued.
According to a report from EcoWatch, listeria monocytogenes causes listerosis, a food-borne illness especially dangerous to pregnant women and newborns, as well as people over 65 and those with weakened immune systems, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Listeria infects about 1,600 people per year and kills around 260.
Healthy individuals often suffer only short-term symptoms such as high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea. Symptoms usually kick in one to four weeks after exposure.
Listeria contamination was found last year in millions of pounds of pre-made salads and meals, all of which were linked to possible salmonella and listeria contamination at a single processing plant in California, and it has been found on cantaloupes in the past as well.
Those who purchased any recalled avocados are urged not to consume them, but to discard them or return them to the place of purchase for a full refund, the company’s statement said.
Anyone with further questions can also contact Henry Avocado at (760) 745-6632, Ext 132 or visit visit www.henryavocado.com/media.