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Salmonella outbreak causes Trader Joe's to recall a Miami firm's herbs in 29 states

David J. Neal, Miami Herald on

Published in News & Features

Trader Joe’s took herbs made by a Miami area company off the shelves of stores in 29 states and issued a recall of those already sold after a CDC and FDA investigation links the herbs to a salmonella outbreak.

Here’s what you need to know.

What basil did Trader Joe’s recall?

This recall involves Infinite Herbs Organic Basil from Feb. 1 through April 6 at Trader Joe’s stores in Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Missouri, Kentucky, Georgia, Illinois, Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Hampshire, Ohio, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, Wisconsin and Washington, D.C.

The basil came in 2.5-ounce clamshells.

Seven of the 12 people in the outbreak “purchased or likely purchased” the organic basil from Trader Joe’s.

Infinite Herbs is run out of Doral by President, Secretary and Treasurer Grego Berliavsky and Vice President of Operations Dalmiro Rodriguez, state of Florida records show.

What is salmonella?


Salmonella’s among the most common foodborne illnesses, making 1.35 million people in the United States sick each year, hospitalizing about 26,500 and killing about 420. Usually, it just means four to seven days of stomachaches, fever and diarrhea. As with most foodborne illnesses, those under 5 years old and over 65 years old are in greater danger of getting the worst salmonella symptoms.

How widespread is this salmonella outbreak?

Official counts of salmonella outbreaks tend to be significantly under the actual number of people sickened. Most people just suffer through the week without seeing a medical professional and get better.

So far, this outbreak includes 12 people in seven states. One of those people has been hospitalized. Minnesota reports four people ill. Florida reports three. Reporting one each are Missouri, Georgia, New Jersey, Rhode Island and Wisconsin.

What you should do now?

If you have this basil, return it to Trader Joe’s for a full refund or throw it deep into the garbage where the curious pets can’t get to it and make themselves sick.


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