The FDA is detaining shipments of “cantaloupe from Agropecuaria Montelibano, a Honduran grower and packer, because, based on current information, fruit from this company appears to be associated with a Salmonella Litchfield outbreak in the United States and Canada.”
The FDA says it has received reports of 50 illnesses in 16 states and nine illnesses in Canada linked to the consumption of cantaloupes, and has issued some instructions to keep you salmonella free:
The FDA recommends that consumers take the following steps to reduce the risk of contracting Salmonella or other foodborne illnesses from cantaloupes:
* Purchase cantaloupes that are not bruised or damaged. If buying fresh-cut cantaloupe, be sure it is refrigerated or surrounded by ice.
* After purchase, refrigerate cantaloupes promptly.
* Wash hands with hot, soapy water before and after handling fresh cantaloupes.
* Scrub whole cantaloupes by using a clean produce brush and cool tap water immediately before eating. Don’t use soap or detergents.
* Use clean cutting surfaces and utensils when cutting cantaloupes. Wash cutting boards, countertops, dishes, and utensils with hot water and soap between the preparation of raw meat, poultry, or seafood and the preparation of cantaloupe.
* If there happens to be a bruised or damaged area on a cantaloupe, cut away those parts before eating it.
* Leftover cut cantaloupe should be discarded if left at room temperature for more than two hours.
* Use a cooler with ice or use ice gel packs when transporting or storing cantaloupes outdoors.