The CDC announced that an outbreak of Listeria infections, traced to imported mushrooms, appears to be over.
The CDC, public health and regulatory officials in several states, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration investigated a multistate outbreak of Listeria monocytogenes infections linked to enoki mushrooms. A total of 36 people infected with the outbreak strain of Listeria monocytogenes were reported from 17 states. A list of the states and the number of cases in each can be found on the Map of Reported Cases page.
Listeria specimens from ill people were collected from November 23, 2016, to December 13, 2019. Ill people ranged in age from less than 1 to 96 years, with a median age of 67. Fifty-eight percent of ill people were female. Of 33 ill people with information available, 31 hospitalizations were reported. Four deaths were reported from California (2), Hawaii, and New Jersey. Six cases were pregnancy-associated, with two resulting in fetal loss.
Epidemiologic, traceback, and laboratory evidence showed that enoki mushrooms supplied by Green Co. LTD, located in the Republic of Korea, were the likely source of this outbreak.
In interviews, ill people answered questions about the foods they ate and other exposures in the month before they became ill. Twelve out of 22 (55%) reported eating mushrooms, including enoki, portobello, white, button, cremini, wood ear, maitake, and oyster.
On March 18, 2020, the Korean Ministry of Food and Drug Safety published its investigation findings and steps it will take to prevent future illnesses. It found Listeria monocytogenes in enoki mushrooms produced by two firms in the Republic of Korea.
Recalled enoki mushrooms are past their shelf life and should not be available for sale. As of June 9, 2020, this outbreak appears to be over.
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