CDC warns of Midwestern parasite outbreak linked to bagged salads

If you live in the Midwestern United States, you may want to avoid bagged salad mixes for a while. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention details a new outbreak that has been linked back to the products, putting consumers at risk of contracting a parasite that can cause gastrointestinal distress. Multiple brands of bagged salads sold by various retailers have been recalled as part of this outbreak.

The outbreak involves a foodborne pathogen called Cyclospora that, in this case, has been linked back to mixed, bagged salads containing iceberg lettuce and various other veggies like carrots and cabbage. As of June 23, the CDC reports that this outbreak has infected 122 people throughout the Midwest ranging in age from 19 to 92.

Out of the 118 people for whom data is available, the CDC reports that 19 of them have been hospitalized, but there haven't been any reports of deaths. It takes four and six weeks for someone to become ill after consuming the contaminated food, however, so additional cases may appear in the future.

By June 20, multiple bagged salad products were recalled under this outbreak, including recalls from Hy-Vee, Jewel-Osco, and Aldi. Brands affected by the recall include Signature Farms Garden Salad, Little Salad Bar Garden Salad, and Fresh Express Garden Salad. The recalls apply to North and South Dakota, Iowa, Indiana, Illinois, Minnesota, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Wisconsin, Arkansas, and Michigan.

If you have any of these recalled salad mixes, the CDC says to throw them away. In the case of the Jewel-Osco and Hy-Vee brands, the recall applies to 12-ounce bags. The Aldi recall merely details the Little Salad brand; the CDC says that if you're not sure whether your product is recalled, throw it away out of an abundance of caution.