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Consumer Kashrut Alerts

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The following health alert is from the FDA on March 22, 2008

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has issued an import alert regarding entry of cantaloupe from Agropecuaria Montelibano, a Honduran grower and packer, because, based on current information, fruit from this company appears to be associated with a Salmonella Litchfield outbreak in the United States and Canada.
The FDA recommends that consumers take the following steps to reduce the risk of contracting Salmonella or other foodborne illnesses from cantaloupes:

  • Purchase cantaloupes that are not bruised or damaged. If buying fresh-cut cantaloupe, be sure it is refrigerated or surrounded by ice.
  • After purchase, refrigerate cantaloupes promptly.
  • Wash hands with hot, soapy water before and after handling fresh cantaloupes.
  • Scrub whole cantaloupes by using a clean produce brush and cool tap water immediately before eating. Don't use soap or detergents.
  • Use clean cutting surfaces and utensils when cutting cantaloupes. Wash cutting boards, countertops, dishes, and utensils with hot water and soap between the preparation of raw meat, poultry, or seafood and the preparation of cantaloupe.
  • If there happens to be a bruised or damaged area on a cantaloupe, cut away those parts before eating it.
  • Leftover cut cantaloupe should be discarded if left at room temperature for more than two hours.
  • Use a cooler with ice or use ice gel packs when transporting or storing cantaloupes outdoors.

A video on how to wash and cut a cantelope can be found at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-v4DYoKjwFw

Many cantelopes and cantelope based products are being recalled. I am listing some below:

  • http://www.fda.gov/oc/po/firmrecalls/centralamerican03_08.html>Central American Produce, Inc. of Pompano Beach, FL announces a voluntary recall of cantaloupes grown, packed and shipped by an independent third-party grower, Agropecuaria Montelibano of San Lorenzo Valle, Honduras.The cantaloupes were distributed for sale in medium brown cardboard cartons with the brands “Mikes Melons” or “Mayan Pride” all showing “PRODUCE OF HONDURAS” printed on each of the four side panels of the carton. The address of the shipper appears on one end panel of the carton as follows: GROWN, PACKED AND SHIPPED BY: AGROPECUARIA MONTELIBANO, SAN LORENZO, VALLE, HONDURAS (3/25/08)
  • Tropifresh, Inc. Recalls Whole Cantaloupe Products Because of Possible Health Risk (March 26)
  • T.M. Kovacevich International, Inc. Recalls Cantaloupe Because of Possible Health Risk. Whole cantaloupe fruits subject to this recall were sold in boxes marked with the following text: “Cantaloupe, Mike’s Melons, Produce of Honduras, Grown, Packed and Shipped by Agropecuaria Montelibano, San Lorenzo, Valle, Honduras”. 3/26/08
  • Chiquita Brands International, Inc. Recalls Whole Cantaloupes Grown by Agropecuaria Montelibano, Honduras, Due to Possible Health Risk. The cantaloupes were distributed for sale throughout the US and Canada in cardboard cartons with the brands "Mike's Melons," "Mayan Pride" and "Chiquita" all showing "PRODUCE OF HONDURAS" printed on each of the side panels of the carton. The address of the shipper appears on one end panel of the carton as follows: GROWN, PACKED AND SHIPPED BY: AGROPECUARIA MONTELIBANO, SAN LORENZO, VALLE, HONDURAS. 3/27/08
  • Bounty Fresh, LLC. Recalls Cantaloupe Because of Possible Health Risk. Whole cantaloupe fruits subject to this recall are packed three melons in a sleeve under the brand "Chestnut Hill Farms" and one melon per sleeve under the "Perfect Melon" brand. Individual melons are not labeled, but sleeves contain tags that say either "Perfect Melon" (one count) or "Chestnut Hill Farms" (3 count). Whole cantaloupe fruits subject to this recall were sold in boxes marked with the following text: "Cantaloupe, "Chestnut Hill Farms" (3 count) or "Perfect Melon" (one count) , Produce of Honduras, Grown, Packed and Shipped by Agropecuaria Montelibano, San Lorenzo, Valle, Honduras". All boxes also contain the Chestnut Hill Farms logo. 3/27/08
  • Simply Fresh Fruit Announces Nationwide Recall of Some Fresh Cut Fruit Products Containing Cantaloupe Due to Possible Salmonella Contamination. The products being recalled include: Simply Fresh Fruit Brand food service Fruit Mix in Syrup products dated “sell by 4 – 18 08” or earlier, food service Cantaloupe Chunks in Syrup products dated “sell by 4 – 08 8” or earlier, and retail and club store Simply Fresh, Fresh Cut Fruit Brand containing cantaloupe dated “sell by 3 – 29 8”or earlier. 3/27/08
  • Spokane Produce, Inc. of Spokane, Washington is recalling Garden Patch, Yokes, and Rosauers Classic labels of various products of fresh cut and cut fruits containing cantaloupe, because they have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella. 3/28/08
  • Dole Fresh Fruit Company, a subsidiary of Dole Food Company, Inc., has voluntarily recalled all Honduran Cantaloupes grown, packed and shipped by an independent third-party grower, Agropecuaria Montelibano of San Lorenzo Valle, Honduras. 3/28/08
  • JARD Marketing Corp Announces Recall of Some Fresh Cut and Foodservice Fruit Products Containing Cantaloupe Due To Possible Salmonella Contamination. Retail products containing cantaloupe packed in plastic cups and trays include the following brands: Frosty Fresh, Fresh Hand Cut, Fruit On The Go, Highland Park, Bruegger’s Bagels, Sid Wainer & Son, Hannaford Brothers and Garden Highway Plant # P-005. Plastic cups and trays under this recall are coded with a sell by date of "3/29/08" or earlier. photos here (3/28/08)
  • Fresh Express Foods Corporation, Inc. Recalls Cube Cut Cantaloupe Due to Possible Health Risk. The recalled cut cubed cantaloupe was distributed to 2 local restaurants, 1 hospital and 1 retirement center in Medford and 1 restaurant in Klamath Fall Oregon. One grocery store, Price Less "Deli Department", in Cave Junction Oregon received cut product and all have been contacted under our food safety recall policy. 3/28/08
    The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/Alerts/?alert=A2343
  • The following health alert is from the FDA on March 31, 2008.

    Organic yogurt maker Stonyfield Farm has announced a voluntary product recall of its non-fat blueberry yogurt products. The recall comes in response to the possibility of glass fragments in the product. Although the company believes the problem is not widespread, it is taking this precautionary measure to ensure the safety of its consumers. Affected products would be 6-ounce Fat Free Blueberry yogurts carrying one of following product codes printed along the cup bottom that start with the following dates:

    • Apr 14 08
    • Apr 15 08
    • April 25 08
    • Apr 26 08
    Consumers are instructed to return opened and unopened containers to their retailers. Those returning product will be reimbursed for the full value of their purchase.

    The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/Alerts/?alert=A2347

    The following kashrus alert is from the MK on March 27, 2008.

    The MK wishes to inform the public that the following brands of juices should no longer be purchased without the MK mark as they are no longer kosher certified:
    Allen's, Fruite, Great Value, Loblaw's, Merit-Selection, No-Name, Oasis, President's Choice, Rougemont & Sun-Maid.

    The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/Alerts/?alert=A2346

    The following kashrus alert is from the Kashrus Magazine on March 23, 2008 and confirmed with the Vaad of Cincinnati.

    The Vaad Hoier of Cincinnati no longer certifies Romaine Lettuce, Leaf Lettuce or Lettuce Spring Mixes from any distributor or source, even when bearing the CVH symbol. The Vaad Hoier continues to certify shredded iceberg lettuce and coleslaw from the Club Chef Company located in Covington, Kentucky. If you see an unauthorized use of our CVH kosher symbol, please contact the Vaad Hoier at (513) 731-4671 or fax a copy to (513) 731-4685.

    The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/Alerts/?alert=A2345

    The following kashrus alert is from the Kof-K on March 26, 2008

    Please be advised that Kirkland Brand Organic Animal Crackers sold by Costco in Mexico are certified Kof-K Dairy. The Dairy designation was inadvertently omitted. Packaging is being re-printed with the Dairy designation.

    The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/Alerts/?alert=A2344

    The following kashrus advisory is from the OU on February 22, 2007 and reissued March 20, 2008.

    Starbucks Coffee Liqueurs: Although the OU symbol is not yet on the bottles, please be advised that these products are certified as follows:

    • Starbucks Coffee Liqueur is OU, Kosher and Parve.
    • Starbucks Cream Liqueur is OU-D, Kosher and Dairy.

    The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/Alerts/?alert=A1980

    The following kashrus advisory is from the OU in response to a reader's question on November 5, 2007 and the OU on November 6, 2007 and March 20, 2008.

    Due to an error, the OU symbol was omitted from Godiva Chocolate Liqueur labels. These products continue to be certified without change as follows:

    • Godiva Chocolate Cream Liqueur, White Chocolate Cream Liqueur, Cappuccino and Caramel Milk Chocolate Liqueur are Kosher and Dairy.
    • Godiva Chocolate Liqueur is Kosher and Parve.

    The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/Alerts/?alert=A2200

    The following kashrus alert is from the MK dated Feb. 14, 2008 and resent on March 20, 2008.

    It has come to our attention that members of our community are purchasing fresh fish sold at stores or fish counters that do not have certification by the VAAD. Currently, no supermarkets have a Kosher certified fish department. It is imperative that the community understand that purchasing fresh fish has extensive restrictions and provisions, and that there are many non-kosher species being sold that closely resemble kosher species.
    A shocking example of the dangers involved in this practice has recently come to our attention. A local supermarket has been selling STURGEON and BASA (PANGASIUS, otherwise known as Vietnamese catfish), which are NOT KOSHER, while claiming to its customers that they sell only kosher fish.
    The consequences of using non-kosher fish are the same as TREIF meat. If you have bought fish from any unsupervised establishment, and you were unable to positively identify them as kosher fish you need to consult with your Rabbi for further instructions regarding the status of your pots and pans, etc. We are asking members of our community to be aware of this issue and to understand that without a reliable hechsher, one cannot always tell whether or not a fish has scales and fins. It is certainly forbidden to purchase fish that has already been filleted without a Hechsher. We therefore urge our community to purchase their fish in locations that have kosher certification.

    Ed. note: Information on purchase of fish can be found at http://www.kashrut.com/articles/fishfaq/

    The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/Alerts/?alert=A2342

    The following Shabbos/Yom-Tov appliance alerts are from the Star-K on March 20, 2007.

    The Star-K has posted alerts about the Shabbos mode of a number of KitchenAid Built-in Double Ovens and interior lights in several Star-K certified built-in 48" KitchenAid refrigerators.
    The Star-K has also posted alerts concerning some GE MONOGRAM OVENS Further information can be found at Star-Kwww.star-k.com/alerts/alerts-MARCH2008.htm

    The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/Alerts/?alert=A2341

    The following kashrut alert is from the Star-K on March 20, 2007.

    Baffles brand Snack Clusters distributed by Cereal Foods USA is no longer certified by the Star-K.

    The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/Alerts/?alert=A2340
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