Dr. Mark Horton, director of the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), today warned consumers not to eat Del Monte whole cantaloupe sold at Northern California and Nevada Raley’s, Bel Air, Nob Hill Foods and Food Source stores between October 5 and October 16, 2009 because the cantaloupe may be contaminated with Salmonella. Raley’s, which owns Bel Air, Nob Hill Foods and Food Source stores, is voluntarily recalling 1,120 cartons of Del Monte whole cantaloupe after routine testing detected Salmonella. No illnesses have been reported from these products.

CDPH is issuing this alert in case consumers may still have some of the affected cantaloupe in their possession.

Salmonella is an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Healthy persons infected with Salmonella often experience fever, diarrhea (which may be bloody), nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. Consumers who may eaten this product and are experiencing the above symptoms should consult their health care provider.

There have been several Salmonella cantaloupe outbreaks over the last few years – some involving serious injury and death.  Here are three:

Viva Cantaloupe

Susie Cantaloupe

Cantaloupe Litchfield