by in Food Borne Illnesses, Listeria

On March 31, 2016, the CDC declared that the outbreak of LIsteria monocytogenes linked to prepackaged Dole salads is now over. The final case count rests at 19 people sick. These illnesses were spread across 9 states, including Connecticut with 1 case, Indiana with 1 case, Massachusetts with 1 case, Michigan with 4 cases, Missouri with 2 cases, New Jersey with 1 case, New York with 6 cases, Ohio with 2 cases, and Pennsylvania with 1 case. Only 1 death was reported, in Michigan. Every case of illness required hospitalization.

The end of the CDC investigation follows a few days after Canadian health officials declared an end to their investigation. A total of 14 cases and 3 deaths were reported in Canada over the course of their investigation. This brings the multinational outbreak to a total of 33 people sickened with 4 deaths reported. Most of the cases were centered around the Great Lakes region in both countries. Dole was quick to issue a recall for contaminated salads after they were linked to the outbreak. Only salads produced by their Springfield, Ohio facility were affected by the recall.

The CDC classifies Listeria monocytogenes as an important health issue in the United States. The bacteria is especially dangerous to pregnant women, infants, the elderly, and those with suppressed immune systems. Listeria poisoning may begin to show symptoms as soon as three days after infection, although symptoms may take 2 months to appear. Generally, a Listeria monocytogenes infection will produce symptoms including stiff neck, diarrhea, fever, nausea, headache, and muscle aches. If you or a loved one begins to show the symptoms of LIsteria poisoning, contact a medical professional.