Cucumbers Recalled After Salmonella Sickens More Than 160 People in 25 States

So far there have been 50 hospitalizations in the East and Midwest but no deaths tied to the outbreak.

cucumber recalled for salmonella
The recalled cucumbers were dark green, approximately 1.5 to 2 inches in diameter, and 5 to 9 inches long.Canva; Everyday Health
On June 5, 2024, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that they were jointly investigating a multistate outbreak of Salmonella Africana tied to cucumbers. So far, the outbreak has resulted in at least 162 illnesses in 25 states and the District of Columbia. More than 50 people have been hospitalized, but no deaths have been reported.

The CDC announced the joint investigation after the Florida-based company Fresh Start Produce Sales Inc. recalled whole cucumbers sold to distributors in 14 states. The cucumbers may have been repackaged and sold in other states as well, the agency said. Fresh Start issued the recall last weekend, after the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture found that a sample cucumber tested positive for salmonella.

The recall does not include mini cucumbers or English cucumbers.

The true number of people affected by this latest outbreak could be much higher, the CDC notes, as most people sickened by salmonella get better on their own and are not tested for the bacteria. The illnesses so far tied to the outbreak occurred between March 11 and May 16, 2024.

The agencies are also investigating an illness outbreak tied to a different strain, Salmonella Braenderup. “The two outbreaks share several similarities, including where and when illnesses occurred and the demographics of ill people,” the CDC said. The agencies have not yet been able to tie this second outbreak to a food source, though.

What Are the Symptoms of Salmonella Illness?

Salmonella is a group of bacteria that are commonly linked to foodborne infections.

Symptoms of salmonella infection can begin anytime from six hours to six days after exposure, and can last four to seven days. Symptoms can be severe, and include fever, diarrhea (sometimes with blood), nausea, vomiting, and stomach pain. Young children, people 55 and older, and those with weakened immune systems are at higher risk of serious or even fatal illness if sickened with salmonella.

What You Should Do in Light of the Outbreak

Businesses affected by the recall have been notified, and the cucumbers in question should no longer be available for purchase. If you have whole cucumbers at home, you should call the store where you purchased them to see if they are included in the recall. If you can’t find out, or aren’t sure, you should throw out the cucumbers to be safe, the CDC said.

Wash any surfaces that came into contact with the cucumbers with hot, soapy water.

If you have any of the follow severe symptoms, you should contact your doctor:

  • Diarrhea and a fever higher than 102 degrees F
  • Diarrhea for more than 3 days that isn’t getting better
  • Bloody diarrhea
  • So much vomiting that you cannot keep liquids down
  • Signs of dehydration, including not peeing much, feeling dizzy when standing up, and dry mouth or throat
Editorial Sources and Fact-Checking

Everyday Health follows strict sourcing guidelines to ensure the accuracy of its content, outlined in our editorial policy. We use only trustworthy sources, including peer-reviewed studies, board-certified medical experts, patients with lived experience, and information from top institutions.

Sources

  1. Salmonella: Investigation Details. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. June 5, 2024.
  2. Fresh Start Produce Sales Initiates Recall of Whole Cucumbers Because of Possible Health Risk. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. June 1, 2024.
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