June 28, 2013
The Texas Department of State Health Services is advising consumers not to eat Woodstock Frozen Organic Pomegranate Kernels because the product may be contaminated with Hepatitis A, a virus that can cause serious health problems.
Scenic Fruit Company issued a recall this week of Woodstock Frozen Organic Pomegranate Kernels, typically sold in 8-ounce resealable packages. DSHS is working with the distributor and will work with Texas stores to ensure the product has been removed from shelves. DSHS is advising people to check their freezers and dispose of the product if found. A complete list of recalled products can be found at www.fda.gov/Safety/Recalls.
No cases of Hepatitis A connected to this product have been identified in Texas at this time. Hepatitis A vaccination can prevent illness if given within two weeks of exposure to the contaminated product. People who consumed this product in the last two weeks and have never been vaccinated should contact their health care provider for guidance.
Hepatitis A virus is spread as a result of fecal contamination (fecal-oral route) and may be spread from person to person through close contact or through food handling. The virus is commonly spread by contaminated food or beverages. People are at increased risk of acquiring Hepatitis A if they have been in close contact with an infected person.
Early signs of Hepatitis A appear two to six weeks after exposure. Symptoms commonly include mild fever, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fatigue, pain in the upper right side of the abdomen, dark urine and jaundice (yellow eyes or skin). People with these symptoms should not go to work, especially if they work in food service, health care or child care, and should consult a physician immediately.
The disease varies in severity, with mild cases lasting two weeks or less and more severe cases lasting four to six weeks or longer. Severe cases may result in hospitalization. Some people, especially children, may not develop jaundice and may have an illness so mild it can go unnoticed. However, even mildly ill people can be highly infectious.
(News Media Contact: Christine Mann, DSHS Assistant Press Officer, 512-776-7511)
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