According to federal health officials, a popular supermarket has issued a serious recall for a contaminated product that has hospitalized 18 people so far. The United States Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service said Thursday that the recalled product was contaminated with E. coli.
The 18 people who were reported sick became ill between July 5 and July 25, according to the government agency. The affected product had the strain of E. coli as Escherichia coli O26.
"Food safety is our top priority. We have been working closely with various federal agencies as we share the common goal of maintaining food safety and public health," the supermarket’s spokeswoman Maria Brous said.
If a consumer eats a food that is contaminated with E. coli, symptoms may include diarrhea, vomiting, nausea, abdominal cramping, and for some individuals, life-threatening form of kidney failure called hemolytic uremic syndrome, according to the “Mayo Clinic.”
Publix Super Markets are recalling several ground beef products. The following are the contaminated products: Bacon and cheddar burgers, bacon and cheddar meatballs, bacon and cheddar slider, bacon and fried onion burger, bacon and fried onion meatball, bacon and fried onion slider, Badia seasoned ground chuck burger, blue cheese burger, blue cheese meatballs, blue cheese slider, ground chuck, ground chuck burger, ground chuck for chili, ground chuck for meatloaf, ground chuck slider, jalapeno and cheddar slider, jalapeno and cheddar burger, jalapeno and cheddar meatballs, meatloaf grillers, mesquite seasoned ground chuck burger, Montreal seasoned chuck burger, seasoned meatloaf (oven ready), Spanish meatballs, steakhouse seasoned ground chuck burger, stuffed peppers (oven ready), stuffed pimento cheese burger, swiss and mushroom burger, swiss and mushroom meatball, and swiss and mushroom slider.
"Traceback information indicated that case-patients consumed ground chuck products purchased at various Publix Super Markets that was supplied by a yet-to-be-determined source," the USDA said.
The meat was sold in 24 counties in Florida, according to CNN. They are Brevard, Charlotte, Citrus, Collier, DeSoto, Flagler, Hernando, Highlands, Hillsborough, Indian River, Lake, Lee, Manatee, Marion, Orange, Osceola, Pasco, Pinellas, Polk, Sarasota, Seminole, St. Lucie, Sumter, and Volusia.
If you have this recalled product, health officials are urging consumers to discard the item in the trash or return it to the place of purchase.
Do you have any in your home? Be sure to inform your family and friends!