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May 6, 2015: Increased surveillance for listeriosis due to recall of apple product
Increased surveillance for listeriosis due to recall of apple product

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is recalling sliced apples and products containing sliced apples produced by Sun Rich Fresh Foods Inc. in Brampton due to possible Listeria monocytogenes contamination. CFIA is reporting one confirmed illness in Canada associated with the consumption of these products.

The product was offered as a menu option to patients at Hamilton Health Sciences. As the recall affects apple products with a best before date of May 17th, it is possible that patients may have received the product prior to the recall notice which was issued on April 29.

Upon notice of the recall, Nutrition Services at HHS initiated its Food Product Recall Procedure to ensure that all product with the lot numbers indicated in the recall were identified and removed from HHS facilities.

Along with Hamilton Public Health Services, Infection Prevention & Control is monitoring the issue closely across our patient population. To date, Hamilton Public Health has not received any reports of listeriosis associated with this recall.
In addition to hospitals, the affected apple products may have also been distributed in the community through places like retail stores, food service establishments, nursing homes and hotels. We can confirm that none of the affected products are carried by shops and services operated by the Hamilton Health Sciences Volunteer Association.

Any recent Hamilton Health Sciences patients or visitors, or members of the community experiencing symptoms of listeriosis, as outlined below should seek attention of their family physician or go to an Emergency Department or Urgent Care Centre.

More information about the recall and a list of the recalled items is available on the Canadian Food Inspection Agency’s website.

Thank you.

What is Listeriosis?

Listeriosis is a rare foodborne infection caused by consumption of contaminated foods. Commonly implicated foods include unpasteurized dairy products and foods contaminated after processing such as hot dogs, cold cuts or deli meats. Food contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes may not look or smell spoiled and the bacteria can grow even if the food is stored in the refrigerator. Illness occurs most commonly in the elderly, pregnant or immunocompromised individuals.

Listeriosis can lead to mild illness with flu-like symptoms, fever, muscle aches, and gastrointestinal symptoms such as nausea or diarrhea. Infections in pregnancy and immunocompromised patients can also be severe causing meningitis, encephalitis or sepsis. It can also lead to miscarriage, stillbirth or neonatal disease. The incubation period is from 1 day up to 3 months.

Diagnosis is through laboratory testing and detection of Listeria monocytogenes, a gram positive rod, from CSF, blood, amniotic fluid, placenta, meconium or other sites of infection.

Hamilton Health Sciences • Hamilton, Ontario • 905.521.2100

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