The Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control are investigating a deadly listeria outbreak that has been linked to enoki mushrooms sold by Sun Hung Foods, Inc, reports CBS News. Sun Hung Foods officially recalled the mushrooms on Monday, March 9. The mushrooms were sold in clear plastic packaging with a green label. This outbreak may have allegedly begun as far back as November 2016.
According to the article, the outbreak had led to four deaths and over 30 hospitalizations across 17 different states. The deaths occurred in Hawaii, California, and New Jersey. Listeria is particularly harmful to pregnant women. The outlet claims that six pregnant women have gotten sick since the outbreak, and at least two have suffered from miscarriages.
While the piece confirms that at least 30 people have been hospitalized, it also states that there are approximately 36 infections in total. The other six may not have had a severe enough reaction to be checked into a medical facility, at this time. Listeria infection is typically treated with a course of antibiotics.
Common symptoms of a listeria infection “include high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea.” However, symptoms can vary in different people.
“Enoki mushrooms are white, with long stems and small caps. The affected mushrooms were sold in clear plastic bags with a green panel and are labeled as ‘Product of Korea,'” says the article.
The CDC has advised anyone who purchased these mushrooms to throw them out immediately and to sanitize and clean the area they were stored in thoroughly. The organization also warned consumers not to eat the mushrooms if they have already purchased them, even if someone has eaten them and not gotten sick from the contact.
“Until the CDC learns more about the source of the mushrooms and how they’re distributed, it advises all people at higher risk of infection — pregnant women, people 65 and older and people with weakened immune systems — to avoid eating any enoki mushrooms labeled as being from Korea,” reports an article from CNN.
On social media, several people were thankful for the news and claimed they would throw out their mushrooms as soon as possible. A few people said they had eaten them recently and not had any reaction, although it should be noted that the infection can sometimes take a few weeks to present symptoms. Other people recommended only buying organic mushrooms from American farmers, or growing them in their own backyard.