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Trader Joe’s organic fresh basil recalled in 29 states after salmonella outbreak

Trader Joe's retailer storefront^ Saugus Massachusetts USA^ June 30 2022

Trader Joe’s has pulled Infinite Herbs-branded basil from its shelves in 29 states after a salmonella outbreak has left 12 people sickened. The grocery store announced the recall April 17 on its website, stating that Infinite Herbs organic basil may have the potential to be contaminated with salmonella. On their website, Trader Joe’s advised customers who purchased Infinite Herbs organic basil during the Feb. 1–April 6 date range to discard the product or return it to any Trader Joe’s store for a full refund.  According to a food safety alert from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the ‘Infinite Herbs’ brand organic basil was sold in 2.5-ounce clamshell-style plastic containers in 29 states due to the risk of salmonella. The CDC reported that the outbreak had sickened at least 12 people in seven states, including one hospitalization, with zero deaths reported so far.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said that the people who have fallen ill are spread across seven states: Florida, Georgia, Minnesota, Missouri, New Jersey, Rhode Island and Wisconsin. The FDA shared on its website that “seven of eight cases with information available reported exposure to fresh organic basil purchased from Trader Joe’s before becoming ill,” adding that Trader Joe’s has already pulled all Infinite Herbs brand organic basil from their store shelves and the product should no longer be available for sale to customers in any stores.  The supplier of the basil is cooperating with the FDA investigation and has agreed to initiate a voluntary recall, the CDC stated.

In a statement posted to its website, Infinite Herbs CEO Grego Berliavsky said the company has voluntarily recalled some 2.5-ounce packages of fresh organic basil sold between February 1 through April 6 with UPC 8 18042 02147 7 because of the potential it could be contaminated with salmonella. Berliavsky wrote: “I am heartbroken at the thought that any item we sold may have caused illness or discomfort. We simply will not rest until we can once again be confident in the safety of this product .. Fresh basil naturally wilts and expires after five to seven days, so we are confident that the recalled basil is no longer available for sale. However, if you have food in your freezer that includes Infinite Herbs organic basil purchased between February 1 and April 6, do not consume it.”  In addition, Berliavsky said that the basil had been sourced from a single farm, which is no longer in production: “We are working with the farmer to conduct an internal investigation of the food safety practices. Through this investigation, our goal is to determine the cause of this recall and apply measures to prevent it from happening again.”

Trader Joe’s said that people who purchased the basil may return it to the store for a refund. Customers can also call Trader Joe’s at (626) 599-3817 or email customer service: here.

Editorial credit: QualityHD / Shutterstock.com

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