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CDC Provides Update for Listeria Caramel Apple Outbreak

Listeria Case Count by State

In its December 30, 2014, update, the U. S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced that a total of 32 persons have been infected with the outbreak strains of Listeria monocytogenes in a fatal Listeria outbreak linked to eating prepackaged caramel apples. The confirmed case count by state is as follows: Arizona (4), California (2), Minnesota (4), Missouri (5), Nevada (1), New Mexico (6), North Carolina (1), Texas (4), Utah (1), Washington (1), and Wisconsin (3). Available illness onset dates range from October 17, 2014, to December 11, 2014.

More About the Outbreak

Listeria moncytogenes is a bacterium capable of causing a serious and life-threatening infection known as listeriosis. Pregnant women and their fetuses, newborns, older adults, and those with weakened immune systems are at greatest risk for developing a Listeria infection and suffering its complications. The vulnerability of these groups to Listeria infection is demonstrated by the CDC’s latest caramel apple outbreak statistics:

  • Ten cases have been associated with a pregnancy (occurred in a pregnant woman or her newborn infant). One fetal loss has been reported.
  • Among those cases not associated with pregnancy, ages ranged from 7 to 92 years, with a median age of 66 years.
  • Three cases of meningitis occurred in otherwise healthy children aged 5–15 years.
  • Thirty-one of those sickened have been hospitalized.
  • Six deaths have been reported. Listeriosis contributed to three of these deaths. It is unclear whether listeriosis contributed to an additional two deaths. The sixth death was unrelated to listeriosis.

California Snack Foods, Happy Apple, and Merbs Candies Recall Their Prepackaged Caramel Apples

According to the FDA, three companies including California Snack Foods, Happy Apple, and Merbs Candies have recalled their commercially produced, prepackaged caramel apples. The recalling companies indicated that they have received notice from an apple supplier, Bidart Brothers, that there may be a connection between Bidart Brothers’ apples and the outbreak. The CDC continues to warn consumers not eat any commercially produced, prepackaged caramel apples, including plain caramel apples as well as those containing nuts, sprinkles, chocolate, or other toppings, until more specific guidance can be provided. Additional recall information can be found at FDA/Recalls.

Obtain a Free Listeria Food Poisoning Lawsuit Evaluation

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with listeriosis, or have a question regarding your legal rights, you can request a free legal case evaluation by using the Free Listeria Lawsuit Evaluation Form found on this page, or by calling the Law Firm of Eric H. Weinberg toll free at 877-934-6274. Our phones are answered 24/7.

The Law Firm of Eric H. Weinberg is currently assisting victims of food poisoning outbreaks including the Salmonella Raw Tuna Sushi Outbreak and the Kenosha County Salmonella Grocery Store Outbreak.