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More warnings issued about fruit products potentially contaminated with hepatitis A

Recall expanded to include ready-to-go fruit cups and fruit salads


A warning about hepatitis A in packaged pineapple chunks has been expanded to include more fruit products sold in 58 stores in B.C. and Alberta.

Both Alberta Health Services and the B.C. Centre for Disease Control says the ready-to-go fruit cups, fruit salads and pineapples were sold at Save-on-Foods, Overwaitea Foods and PriceSmart Foods locations in the two provinces last month.

The products were also sold at Ferraro Foods in Trail, B.C., and at Save-On-Foods in Yorkton, Sask.

Initially the warning applied only to Western Family fresh pineapple chunks, but it was expanded to include fresh peeled and cored pineapple, fresh fruit salad and fresh citrus salad.

The agency says the investigation is ongoing and other products are believed to be affected.

Anyone who ate the products is advised to get a hepatitis A vaccine immediately as the vaccine can prevent infection if administered within two weeks of exposure to the virus.

So far, no illnesses have been reported.

It's unclear how the fruit was contaminated, but officials say the virus is found in stool and food handlers can pass it onto other people if they don't wash their hands with soap and water after using the bathroom.

Hepatitis A symptoms include nausea, yellow skin or eyes, loss of appetite, fever, stomach ache, dark-coloured urine, and light or whitish bowel movements.

The BCCDC warns the symptoms, which can develop 15 to 50 days after exposure, can be so mild that someone might not even know they have the virus, but Hepatitis A can still be life-threatening for the elderly or people with chronic liver disease.

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