Our law firm is representing people sickened in an outbreak of Salmonella food poisoning caused by contaminated cucumbers. This week, our Salmonella attorneys filed a lawsuit against Andrew & Williamson Fresh Produce (Andrew & Williamson), a distributor of cucumbers, and Red Lobster.
Pinpointing Andrew & Williamson Cucumbers
Hundreds of people have been sickened in an outbreak of Salmonella Poona infections in 27 states. According to the CDC, as of September 3, 2015, 285 people infected with the outbreak strains of Salmonella Poona have been reported from the following states: Alaska (8), Arizona (60), Arkansas (6), California (51), Colorado (14), Idaho (8), Illinois (5), Kansas (1), Louisiana (3), Minnesota (12), Missouri (7), Montana (11), Nebraska (2), Nevada (7), New Mexico (15), New York (4), North Dakota (1), Ohio (2), Oklahoma (5), Oregon (3), South Carolina (6), Texas (9), Utah (30), Virginia (1), Washington (9), Wisconsin (2), and Wyoming (3). Illnesses started on dates ranging from July 3, 2015, to August 26, 2015. One death has been reported from California, and 53 people have reported being hospitalized.
The CDC, FDA, and state health departments have been, and continue to, investigate this outbreak. Preliminary results of epidemiological studies (interviews of people sickened and the parents of children sickened) indicate that a food item containing cucumbers was associated with the Salmonella infections. Based on these studies, health officials conducted traceback investigations to try to determine where the cucumbers came from, who grew and distributed them. According to the CDC, preliminary traceback information gathered during these investigations indicates that cucumbers eaten by ill people in these clusters were imported from Mexico and distributed by Andrew & Williamson Fresh Produce.
On September 3, 2015, FDA and the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) briefed the management of Andrew and Williamson Fresh Produce on the status of the investigation, and the company issued a recall of all cucumbers sold under its Limited Edition® label during the period from August 1, 2015, through September 3, 2015.
The recall announcement did not provide a list of retailers and restaurants where the recalled Andrew & Williamson cucumbers had been sold or served. The FDA links to a page on the Andrew & Williamson website that lists “many companies they supply to,” but this is inadequate. Some of the companies listed did not buy cucumbers, and this is a partial list of companies Andrew & Williamson supplies, according to the FDA. The following are the companies listed (less five that we know did not get recalled cucumbers):
Olive Garden, Red Lobster, The Capital Grille, Costco, Safeway, Walmart, Kroger, HEB, United Supermarkets, and Save Mart.
Walmart and Save Mart indicate on the company websites that they got some of the recalled cucumbers. Kroger stores Ralphs and Food 4 Less are affected, according to the company website. Safeway recalled deli sandwiches containing cucumbers sold at certain Safeway and Carrs stores in Alaska. There is no information about the cucumber recall on the websites of retailers Costco, HEB or United Supermarkets.
The only restaurant that has been named in this outbreak is Red Lobster. The Minnesota Department of Health press release on the outbreak stated:
In Minnesota, 12 cases have been identified as part of the national outbreak. At least 10 cases were exposed to contaminated cucumbers at five Red Lobster locations.
Recalled cucumbers were received by Red Lobster restaurants and other Minnesota companies. Investigations to determine specific companies that received recalled cucumbers are still ongoing.
As stated above, our law firm filed a lawsuit against Red Lobster and Andrew & Williamson.
Contaminated Cucumber Form
Contact our law firm if you have information regarding cucumbers at the restaurants or retailers listed above, or at other locations. If you or your child has been sickened, you can request a free consultation with Fred Pritzker or Eric Hageman, our lead lawyers for our cucumber Salmonella cases.