Outbreak Investigation of Hepatitis A Virus Linked to Strawberries

Recall You Need to Know About

The FDA, along with the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Public Health Agency of Canada, and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, are investigating a multistate outbreak of hepatitis A infections in the United States and Canada potentially linked to fresh organic strawberries branded as FreshKampo and HEB, purchased between March 5, 2022, and April 25, 2022.

Currently, the potentially affected FreshKampo and HEB products are past shelf life. People who purchased FreshKampo and HEB fresh organic strawberries between March 5, 2022, and April 25, 2022, and then froze those strawberries for later consumption should not eat them. These products were sold at the following retailers, including, but not limited to:
  • Aldi

  • HEB

  • Kroger

  • Safeway

  • Sprouts Farmers Market

  • Trader Joe’s

  • Walmart

  • Weis Markets

  • WinCo Foods

Reported Hepatitis Cases

Seventeen hepatitis cases have been identified in California, Minnesota and North Dakota, which have led to 12 hospitalizations, FDA said.

Traceback investigations show that cases in California, Minnesota, and Canada reported having purchased the strawberries. More products may be included as the investigation is ongoing. People became ill between March 28 and April 30.

As of May 27, 2022, there are 10 confirmed cases of hepatitis A illness being investigated in two provinces in Canada: Alberta (4) and Saskatchewan (6).

What you should do to protect your health

  • Check your freezer for these fresh organic strawberries purchased between March 5 and 9, 2022. If you froze them to eat later, do not eat them. Throw away any remaining organic strawberries. If you don’t know where the strawberries came from, throw them out.

  • Wash and sanitize any drawers, shelves, or containers where the products were stored using a kitchen sanitizer.

  • If you have eaten these organic strawberries, purchased fresh and later frozen, or have symptoms consistent with hepatitis A, see your health care provider immediately.

  • Wash your hands before and after preparing or eating food.

  • If you have been diagnosed with hepatitis A, do not prepare or serve food and drinks to others.

Hepatitis A Virus (HAV)

Hepatitis A is a contagious virus that can cause liver disease. A hepatitis A virus (HAV) infection can range in severity from a mild illness lasting a few weeks to a severe illness lasting several months. In rare cases, particularly for people with a pre-existing health condition or people with weakened immune systems, hepatitis A infections can progress to liver failure and death.

According to the CDC, symptoms of hepatitis A usually appear two to seven weeks after infection and typically last less than two months. Not everyone has symptoms, and some people can be ill for as long as six months.

Symptoms can include yellow skin or eyes, not wanting to eat, an upset stomach, vomiting, stomach pain, fever, dark urine or light-colored stools, diarrhea, joint pain, and feeling tired.

Adults are more likely than children to have symptoms if they are infected.

Anyone who thinks they may have symptoms after eating the strawberries should contact their health care provider.

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