The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) has reported six cases of Salmonella that match a multi-state strain. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is reporting 60 cases from five states, with pre-cut melons, including fruit salads, the likely source of this outbreak. Indiana, Michigan, Missouri, and Ohio that have seen similar cases.
“The Illinois Department of Public Health is urging people not to eat pre-cut melon purchased from any Walmart store in Illinois, or any of the other affected states, at this time,” said IDPH Director Nirav D. Shah, M.D., J.D. “If you have recently purchased pre-cut melon from Walmart, throw it out. If you have recently eaten pre-cut melon from a Walmart store and experience diarrhea, fever, and cramps, contact your health care provider.”
Illinois cases range in age from 23 to 87 years, and have been reported in all regions of the state. It is recommended that people do not eat pre-cut watermelon from Walmart stores in Illinois. Other grocery stores may be added to the list as the investigation continues.
Walmart stores in Illinois have removed pre-cut melons linked to this outbreak from their shelves.
IDPH advises people to use the proper food safety measures when buying whole melons. Make sure to wash the melons before you start cutting. Also make sure you’ve washed your hands and all utensils, knives and cutting boards, and don’t let fresh fruits and vegetables come into contact with raw meat.