Red Onions Recalled Over Listeria Fears

Gills Onions of California recalled 2,360 pounds of diced red onions on Saturday over fears that the product may contain the deadly bacteria known as Listeria.

Recalled onions were shipped to retailers in the United States and Canada. States affected by the recall include California, Oregon, Washington, Arizona, Idaho, Texas, Illinois, Michigan, Arkansas, Ohio, Tennessee, New Jersey, Georgia and Florida.

Gills Onions notes that the product is already past its “use-by” dates which included products for May 14, 15 and 17 and no illnesses have been reported. Gills Onions is urging customers to throw away any remaining onions they are holding.

Listeriosis which is caused by Listeria monocytogenes is rarely found in healthy people but it can cause high fever, headaches, neck stiffness and nausea. Listeriosis is also linked to birth defects and other pregnancy related issues including miscarriages and stillbirths.

Individuals with poor immune systems can also be killed by listeria infections.

The recall was a voluntary step taken by Gills Onions after a random tested by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency discovered the listeria contamination.

Gills Onions says the recall specifically involves clear, 7-ounce container in retail stores and clear, 5-pound plastic bags which were sold to distributors.

Company spokeswoman Amy Philpott

“So far, they were seeing operating procedures looked normal. A normal sanitation procedure after dicing the onions include cleaning all equipment with fresh water, soap and a high-pressure rinse, and then sanitizer.”

Gills Onions has been in operation since 1983 and has had one other recall in its history, in that case diced yellow onions in 2007 led to no illness and a voluntary recall of the product was also announced at that time.