Costco and Kroger Recall Frozen Fruit Due to Hepatitis Contamination

By Derrick Lane

Costco and Kroger have issued a massive recall of frozen blackberries, including those in frozen berry mixes, for a possible Hepatitis A contamination. The frozen berries are from the brand Townsend Farms, Inc.

The recall includes Private Selection Frozen Triple Berry Medley and Private Selection Frozen Blackberries. Costco Kirkland Signature Three Berry Blend has also been added to the recall list. The recalled products are sold at both Kroger (and their affiliates Ralph’s, Dillon’s, and Harris Teeter) and Costco.

Hepatitis A is a highly contagious liver infection caused by the hepatitis A virus. It can range from a mild illness lasting a few weeks to a severe illness lasting several months. Although rare, hepatitis A can cause death in some people. Hepatitis A usually spreads when a person unknowingly ingests the virus from objects, food, or drinks contaminated by small, undetected amounts of stool from an infected person. Hepatitis A can also spread from close personal contact with an infected person such as through sex or caring for someone who is ill.

Most people who get hepatitis A feel sick for several weeks, but they usually recover completely and do not have lasting liver damage. In rare cases, hepatitis A can cause liver failure and death; this is more common in people older than 50 and in people with other liver diseases.

Many of us buy frozen fruit and store it in our freezer for weeks and then use it for things like smoothies or other recipes. So, if you shop at these stores, please check your freezer.

The FDA and CDC recommend that you get rid of them immediately. If you have these frozen berries in your home or buy them regularly, look for the following product codes (according to the FDA and CDC):

Private Selection Frozen Triple Berry Medley, 48 oz. (Best By: 07-07-20; UPC: 0001111079120), Private Selection Frozen Triple Berry Medley, 16 oz. (Best By: 06-19-20; UPC: 0001111087808), Private Selection Frozen Blackberries, 16 oz. (Best By: 06-19-20, 07-02-20; UPC: 0001111087809)

Costco Kirkland Signature Three Berry Blend (sold in California and Hawaii.

Please talk to your doctor about the next steps and monitor your health if you have eaten even a little of these recalled products, and be aware that the virus can also be spread through personal contact.