Swedesboro, New Jersey — A listeria recall is affecting pre-sliced apples, commonly found as a “healthier” option in fast-food kids’ meals across the country, served in lieu of larger quantities of fries.
The listeria recall came to light on Friday, and was initiated by distributor Ready Pac Foods Inc. of Swedesboro, New Jersey. According to the distributor, 293,488 cases and 296,224 individual units were sent out to 36 states and the District of Columbia, containing apples that were possibly contaminated with the food-borne listeria — which can result in the infection listeriosis.
Among the states to which the potentially contaminated apple slices in the listeria recall were distributed are, according to the Food and Drug Administration website, Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Washington D.C., Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, Wisconsin and West Virginia.
According to the FDA website, the apples potentially contaminated with listeria bear use‐by dates of July 8, 2012 through August 20, 2012 and the affected apples are either sliced or diced.
The agency explains that listeria does not pose a large risk to healthy portions of the population, but those who are pregnant, elderly, very young or immunocompromised may be at higher risk:
“Listeria monocytogenes is an organism that can cause serious or life‐threatening food borne illness in a person who eats a food item contaminated with it. Symptoms of infection may include fever, muscle aches, gastro intestinal symptoms such as nausea or diarrhea. The illness primarily impacts pregnant women and adults with weakened immune systems. Most healthy adults and children rarely become seriously ill.”
Further information about the listeria recall of apples can be found on the FDA website.