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Marler Blog Providing Commentary on Food Poisoning Outbreaks & Litigation

Cantaloupe, a Deadly Fruit – Again

Update

According to Bloomberg News, Salmonella linked to cantaloupes are responsible for killing two people and sickening 141 others in 20 U.S. states. Among those sickened, 31 were hospitalized. Kentucky had the most reports of illness, 50, followed by Alabama, 7; Arkansas, 3; California, 2; Georgia, 1; Illinois, 17; Indiana, 13; Iowa, 7; Michigan, 6; Minnesota, 3; Missouri, 9; Mississippi, 2; New Jersey, 1; North Carolina, 3; Ohio, 3; Pennsylvania, 2; South Carolina, 3; Tennessee, 6; Texas, 1; and Wisconsin, 2.

“It is great that state health departments give us the numbers, but why not the name of the farm where the cantaloupes were grown, and more importantly, what grocery stores they were sold at,” Bill Marler, a lawyer at Marler Clark LLP in Seattle who represents more than 40 victims of the Jensen Farms outbreak, said in an e-mail.

Since the story broke of yet another recall and outbreak linked to cantaloupe – this time Salmonella with nearly 150 sick in several states with two dead – I have received several phone calls from clients from last year’s Listeria cantalupe outbreak – 137 sick with likely 37 dead.  This should not be happening again.  Let’s hope that I can stop updating my chart.

No.

Year

State(s)

Confirmed Illnesses

Pathogen

Description

1.

1985

Wisconsin

16

Campylobacter

Melon or cantaloupe

2.

1990

30 states

245

Salmonella

Cut cantaloupe at salad bars

3.

1991

International, including U.S.

400

Salmonella

Likely Mexican cantaloupe

4.

1997

California

24

Salmonella

Mexican cantaloupe.

5.

1998

Ontario, Canada

22

Salmonella

Cantaloupe

6.

1999

Iowa

61

Norovirus

Restaurant, cantaloupe or melon

7.

2000

California, Oregon, Colorado, Washington, New Mexico, Nevada

47

Salmonella

Mexican cantaloupe

8.

2001

Multi-state and International

50

Salmonella

Viva Brand cantaloupe

9.

2002

California, Minnesota, Oregon, Arkansas, Vermont, Nevada, Texas

58

Salmonella

Susie Brand cantaloupe

10.

2003

New York, Ohio, New Mexico, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Missouri

58

Salmonella

Day care center and private homes, cantaloupe/honeydew melon

11.

2006

Multi-State and International

41

Salmonella

Cantaloupe cut at processing facility in Canada

12.

2007

California

11

Salmonella

Private home

13.

2008

Multi-State

53

Salmonella

Agropecuraria Mobtelibano cantaloupe, from Honduras

14.

2008

California

23

Norovirus

Restaurant, melon and cantaloupe

15.

2011

Multi-State

20

Salmonella

Del Monte cantaloupe

16.

2011

Multi-State

147

Listeria

Jensen Farms cantaloupe

17.

2012

Multi-State

141

Salmonella

Indiana Farm cantaloupe