State Health Department Warns Of Melons Linked To Deadly Listeria Outbreak

Tuesday, September 13th 2011, 2:55 pm
By: News 9

LaShauna Sewell,

OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) is warning Oklahomans not to eat cantaloupe from the Rocky Ford, Colorado growing region.

OSDH, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and several other states are investigating on outbreak of Listeria linked to Rocky Ford cantaloupe. The melon has been blamed for illnesses in Oklahoma, Texas, Nebraska, New Mexico and Colorado. One case of listeriosis has been confirmed in Oklahoma. Another six cases are being investigated.

The CDC says four deaths in Colorado and New Mexico have been connected to the tainted fruit.

Consumers who believe they may have purchased the Rocky Ford cantaloupe can check the label, or check with the store the fruit came from. The OSDH recommends putting the fruit in a sealed plastic bag then disposing of it in a sealed trash can so pets cannot get to it.

Listeriosis is especially dangerous for pregnant women, people age 60 or older, and those with weakened immune systems. Symptoms include:

  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

Read the CDC update on multistate outbreak of Listeriosis linked to Rocky Ford cantaloupes.