Blackberry recall prompted by hepatitis A contamination

Close-up picture of various berries

Some of Kroger’s Private Selection brand blackberries have been recalled. | Courtesy of Pixabay and Andrew Wilson

If you’re a fan of blackberries, take note: Hepatitis A contamination has resulted in the recall of some frozen packages of the smoothie and pie ingredient sold under Kroger’s Private Selection brand.

The berries were available at Kroger as well as other retail locations, according to a news release on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration website.

Contamination of the products, which have a two-year shelf life, was discovered during sampling by the FDA.

If you have any of these, you should throw them away:

Recalled Private Selections blackberries

Example of the recalled Private Selection blackberries | FDA

  • Private selection frozen triple berry medley, 48 ounce (Best by: 07-07-20; UPC: 0001111079120);
  • Private selection frozen triple berry medley, 16 ounce (Best by: 06-19-20; UPC: 0001111087808);
  • Private selection frozen blackberries, 16 ounce (Best by: 06-19-20, 07-02-20; UPC: 0001111087809)

The FDA says it’s continuing to investigate to determine whether there are other products involved.

Neither the FDA nor the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention were aware of any cases of hepatitis A linked to consumption of the recalled berries as of Friday. But hepatitis A contamination can result in a liver infection that might not be readily apparent.

“Most people who get hepatitis A feel sick for several weeks, but they usually recover completely and do not have lasting liver damage,” according to the CDC. “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.”

Symptoms may not arise until 15 to 50 days after exposure and can include fever, headache, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, yellowing of the skin or eyes (jaundice), dark urine and pale stool.

Young children may show no symptoms, though.

If you think you’ve eaten tainted berries, contact your health-care provider to see if you need post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP), such as an injection of hepatitis A vaccine or immune globulin. PEP may be recommended for unvaccinated people who’ve been exposed to the virus in the last two weeks.