Tainted Cantaloupe Lawsuits Grow
Two years, two different outbreaks of potentially deadly food borne illness linked to cantaloupes tainted by bacteria.
The National Law Journal (subscription required) reports that the newest food poisoning outbreak involving cantaloupe has already yielded two new salmonella lawsuits and more litigation seems likely. Meanwhile, cases stemming from last year’s outbreak involving listeria-tainted melons remain pending.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), cantaloupes contaminated with listeria were linked to at least 33 deaths and 147 illnesses last year. Cantaloupes with Salmonella were reported in 21 states this summer, and so far there are 178 cases of infection and two deaths associated with the new outbreak.
Retailers are joining fruit growers at the receiving end of such lawsuits. And last week, the Center for Food Safety – a nonprofit public interest group – sued the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for failure to issue timely regulations, according to the National Law Journal.
The CDC says 48 million Americans develop a food borne illness, 128,000 are hospitalized, and 3,000 die annually. Such statistics raise concerns for the safety of the produce because with every outbreak, public health as a whole is at stake.
If you or a loved one has been harmed by an unsafe food product, contact Sokolove Law today for a free legal consultation and to find out if a product liability lawyer may be able to help you.