The hepatitis A attorneys at Marler Clark, a Seattle based law firm, filed lawsuits against Scenic Fruit Company, LLC (berry grower) and Californica Splendor, Inc. (berry distributor), on behalf of Tanna Mosalsky and Ryan Darrow. Costco sold Kirkland Signature frozen organic strawberries linked to a multi-state hepatitis A outbreak that is responsible for Ms. Mosalsky's and Mr. Darrow's illnesses and injuries. The plaintiffs are represented by Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm. Complaint # 2:23-cv-00516-RSM and 2:23-cv-01235.
After eating Kirkland Signature organic frozen strawberries, Ms. Mosalsky developed symptoms consistent with hepatitis A which included nausea, shortness of breath, abdominal and torso pain and extreme fatigue. When Ms. Mosalsky sought medical treatment, she was hospitalized for four days and eventually diagnosed with hepatitis A. Testing revealed severely elevated liver enzyme levels. She continues to suffer complications of hepatitis A and will need to have her gallbladder removed.
Mr. Darrow purchased Costco organic strawberries in December 2022, consumed them in February 2023 and became ill in April 2023. Because a hepatitis A infection can incubate and occur 15 to 50 days after consumption, this illness fell well within the time frame. His symptoms included nausea, abdominal pain, dark urine fatigue and jaundice. He sought medical care and tests showed elevated liver enzymes, and an inflamed liver. A diagnosis of hepatitis A has left Mr. Darrow with lifelong complications and symptoms which include significant fatigue, pain and other physical discomforts.
As of July 18, 2023, 10 outbreak-associated cases of hepatitis A had been reported, from four states (California, Hawaii, Oregon, and Washington). Illness dates ranged from November 24, 2022, to June 4, 2023, with four people requiring hospitalization. Interviews with those sickened about foods they ate 2 to 7 weeks prior revealed that 100% reported eating organic frozen strawberries.
Epidemiologic and traceback evidence collected by investigations by the CDC, FDA, Washington state and local health departments indicated that frozen organic strawberries imported fresh from certain farms in Baja California, Mexico, in 2022 are the likely source of the outbreak.
For more information: prnewswire.com