Investigators: Fresh basil linked to multistate cyclospora outbreak
Health officials warn not to eat basil from a Mexican exporter
Food businesses and shoppers should avoid fresh basil exported from Mexico by Siga Logistics de RL de CV because it may be linked to a cyclospora outbreak, health regulators announced.
The firm, of Morelos, Mexico, has agreed to a recall, the FDA says. The investigation is ongoing, but an analysis by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of epidemiologic information indicated that fresh basil likely caused the 132 illnesses, including four requiring hospitalization. Exposures to the parasite Cyclospora cayetanensis occurred at restaurants in Florida, Minnesota, New York and Ohio.
The FDA’s traceback investigation indicates that the basil sold at the restaurants was exported to the U.S. by Siga Logistics de RL de CV.
The agency has increased import screening on basil and continues to investigate the cause of the outbreak, working with Mexican food safety regulators.
People should not eat or buy fresh basil exported by Siga Logistics de RL de CV. Don’t eat fresh basil in uncooked dishes, perhaps salads or pesto, if you are uncertain whether it was exported by the company, the FDA says. If you can’t confirm the fresh basil’s source, avoid it.
Restaurants, retails and suppliers shouldn’t sell or serve fresh basil from the company or any fresh basil from an uncertain source, the agency advises.
For more information, visit the FDA’s site to assist industry and consumers at www.fda.gov/fcic.