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U.S. Death Toll From Bacteria-Contaminated Cantaloupe Rises

At least 13 people have died in the U.S. from listeria infections linked to cantaloupes grown in Colorado, making it the most deadly U.S. outbreak of food-borne infection since 1998, authorities said.

Seventy-two people in 18 states have become ill with listeriosis traced to contaminated cantaloupe, the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said today in a statement posted on its website.

The Food and Drug Administration on Sept. 14 warned consumers not to eat cantaloupes from Colorado’s Rocky Ford region shipped by Jensen Farms. The cantaloupes with the brand name Rocky Ford were distributed from July 29 to Sept. 10 in at least 17 states.

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  • Ron

    And, what was the contributing factor for this?

    • Bushmaster66-68

      @ Ron. My recollection is hazy, and I’m not sure about Listeria contamination, and without effective investigation we can only speculate, BUT… Since Colorado has the reputation for being ILLEGAL ALIEN FRIENLY, AND since farm workers generally crap in the fields where they work, AND this crap gets on everything [shoes, clothes, hands, hand tools, farm equipment, processing equipment, et al] it is likely this is how it’s spread.

      Sanitation in the fields on most farms and ranches is almost nil, and regardless of the bacteria name, most will be spread easily in these environments.

      Also, I suspect that as in some of the California outbreaks, that many farmers use “DITCH WATER” to rinse their produce. IF that ditch water is contaminated from either human waste, OR water runoff from adjacent property used for cattle grazing, or worse, a feedlot operation, then one can expect contamination of all ditch water and anything “rinsed” in it.

      • Lipstick

        You are right. What we need to understand is that in Europe no crop whatsoever is picked by had. Al mechanical. I believe we are being held here in the dark ages by people who just want cheap labor. They put our health at risk. As a child my grandpa grew cotton. We don’t eat cotton so when we crapped in the field who cared. It is this type of thinking that will kill us now. They must stop using illegals.

  • jason

    Again, Factory Farms are behind contamination. If their were More Small Farms we would not have this problem. I know that the USDA will only fine them and let them continue to opperate like the factory egg company who also had a contamination problem from the way they produce the product.(Sardine Pact Chickens Egg Layers) Alot of this is cross contamination from other nearby factory farms animal waste getting into the growing fields that usually cause outbreaks of diseases.

    • rocky

      And what makes you the expert?

      • jason

        Do some google searches on factory food contamination or watch the video documentry: Food Inc. This will make you informed on how bad these factory farms are and how they are shuting down small farms across the country. Also by making only a few places that produce food there is the posiblity that if these factories are hit by a disaster such as flood, earthquake or drought, there would be an almost instant food shortage in the U.S. These include the food factories in other countries.

        • C. Pierce

          I believe FEMA is expecting a “food shortage,” either real or man-made. They have been buying millions of ready-to-eat meals with taxpayer $ (of course). Surely the food will be distributed to hungry citizens, right? Not a chance: Its for FEMA personnel. I can’t prove any of this, but I believe this food is being stocked in underground bunkers.
          Here’s something from:
          http://ricochet.com/
          Does FEMA know something you and I don’t know?

          Here is a report of government food hoarding activity and you make up your own mind

          “… One of the nation’s largest suppliers of dehydrated food has cut loose 99% of their dealers and distributors. And it’s not because of the poor economy. It’s because this particular industry leader can no longer supply their regular distribution channels. Why not? Because they’re using every bit of manufacturing capacity they have to fulfill massive new government contracts…

          … Earlier this month, FEMA (the Federal Emergency Management Agency) put out a Request for Proposal, or RFP, for even more dehydrated food. The RFP called for a 10-day supply of meals – for 14 million people. That’s 420 million meals. Typically, FEMA maintains a stockpile of about 6 million meals. Why the sudden need to increase the stockpile by 420 million more…

          … In this economic climate, you would expect FEMA also to be minimizing expenses. But clearly, they’re not. If you do the math, the approximate tab for 420 million meals comes to about a billion dollars.

          What is so urgent that FEMA is spending a billion dollars on survival food…”

          • Berenice

            I believe that the government is set to do several things one of which is to create famine in this country. The other is to enforce martial law. If the martial law doesn’t work then they will go on with the famine plan. They will start to put people in camps as Hitler did and probably with the excuse of limiting some sort of epidemic’s spread. Either way, we the people will become we the slaves. I pray every day that this will not be so.

  • DoctorBob

    First, I work in medicine, so spare me the “what makes you qualified” comments. Lysteria is being spread by the farm workers picking these crops. MEXICANS. They do not practice sanitation as Americans were taught in school. They don’t wash their hands after defecating, and if they carry some odd disease, they pass it right along in the food chain when they pick crops with their contaminated hands. The SOLUTION is to return Mexicans to Mexico, and hire AMERICAN workers for picking crops. If it adds a few cents to the price of a canteloupe, then I think it’s money well worth it. 12 people are dead because Obama refuses to enforce our borders, and encourages Mexicans to come up here and work. That must STOP. For now, if you purchase fruits and vegetables, you can resort to the old trick we used to use in Japan 40 or 50 years ago: rinse all your fruits and veggies in a 5% bleach solution. Give them a minute to soak in the bleach, and then rinse them before eating them. That kills all the pathogens on the skin of the fruit or vegetable, rendering them safe to eat. Until we can gain control over who picks our crops, I’m planning on doing this indefinitely. Obama is turning this country into a Third World nation! Protect yourself accordingly.

    • Berenice

      Thanks for the tip about using the bleach solution to rinse the fruits and veggies. I rinse or soak mine in a natural solution which contains citrus but I think I will be switching.

  • metoo

    in S.Arabia, we had to use bleach water and rinse, pat dry and refrigerate foods bought locally. The stomach virus could land you in the hospital for weeks or you could die from it..all because as DrBobsaid, the other countries defecate where they are and do not clean ..that is why is arab countries, you never offer your left hand. it was your dirty hand. It was much easier to drive an hour away to shop in an American grocery store. The gov. will either place such restrictions and fines so they can no longer operate, or take over..we do need to take control of the crops, start with getting rid of Obama. Seal the borders. Ship out the illegals. May take awhile, but all wars do.

    • Pat

      I use vinegar to wash food. A biochemist told me that he was watching bacteria under a microscope, when vinegar hit them, they exploded! I had a cantaloupe tonight, doused it with vinegar, let it sit for a few minutes, then rinsed it off and peeled it. I use it to wash vegetables and fruit, salad greens, raw chicken. I also use vinegar for cleaning cutting boards and counters, the smell dissipates when it dries. Cheap, safe and easy…

  • NOZ CAVAN

    BUSHMASTER 66-68 AND JASON TOGETHER HIT THE NAIL ON THE HEAD. THE LARGE FACTORY FARMS USEING DIRTY WATER AND KNOWING IT, TO KEEP COST DOWN, ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR THEIR WORKERS, HEALTH AND ACCESS TO FIELD HYGIENE. THE OWNERS OF THE LARGE FACTORY FARMS, TO SHIP THEIR PRODUCE TO THE MARKET SAFELY, STARTS AT THE TOP, ONLY THE OWNERS CAN MAINTAIN THE SAFETY OF THEIR FARMS PRODUCT, NOT THE WORKERS. I LIKE TO KNOW IF THE FIELD WORKERS HAS ANY REST BREAK, TO PROPERLY DISCHARGE THEIR BODY WASTE. RACE OR RELIGION IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR THE SAFETY OF THE FARMS PRODUCE, IT IS THE LARGE FACTORY FARMS CAPITALISM GREED, IS THE REAL DIEASE TO BUYING PUBLIC.

  • interest

    Personal sanitation is only part of the equation – post harvest procedures can infuse contaminated water into the flesh of the melon
    http://www.fda.gov/Food/GuidanceComplianceRegulatoryInformation/GuidanceDocuments/ProduceandPlanProducts/ucm174171.htm#post