US withdraws alert for Salmonella in Mexican papayas

The Food and Drug Administration of the United States (FDA) informed the National Food Health, Safety, and Quality Service (Senasica) that the recommendation issued on the outbreak of Salmonella Uganda in Mexican papayas was null and void.

After the notification of June 28 and an epidemiological tracking, the US agency determined that Agroson's LLC, located in New York, is the exclusive distributor of imported papayas of the Cavi brand.

Since the evidence does not involve another distributor, the FDA concluded that the consumption, purchase or commercialization of the Cavi brand should be avoided while they conclude the investigation to find the root cause of this outbreak.

They also notified Senasica and the Federal Commission for the Protection against Sanitary Risks (Cofepris) that all companies that comply with the Protocol of Action for the Exportation of Mexican Papaya (Carica papaya L) to the United States may continue to send their lots to the distributors in a normal manner.

The FDA investigation is based on the evidence of epidemiological tracking on 72 confirmed cases in different entities of the American union.

Even though the FDA maintains that the New York distributor sells Mexican papaya, it has not ruled out that the source of contamination was the company itself.

The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (Sader) noted that Senasica has implemented various actions on this issue since they were informed about it by the FDA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) last week.

The first action was to send technical personnel to take samples of the product in various productive units of the country, in order to rule out possible contamination in Mexico, and to carry out inspection visits and environmental assessment of packaging facilities and orchards, he said.

The head of Senasica, Francisco Javier Trujillo Arriaga, held a working meeting on Friday with producers, packers, and exporters of this fruit where he emphasized that the head of Sader, Victor Villalobos Arambula, had instructed them to defend the producers that comply with the protocol to sell the food abroad.

There is documentary support that most of the exporting companies have done their job well, he said in a statement.


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