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Consumer Advisory – Potential Salmonella Contamination in Papayas from Mexico

OTTAWA, August 26, 2011 - There was a recent outbreak of Salmonella agona in the United States linked to papayas from Mexico. As a result, the United States Food and Drug Administration has put import controls on papayas from Mexico.

Canada imports papayas from Mexico through the United States. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is working with authorities in the United States and Mexico to identify any products that have been shipped to Canada. Based on this information, the CFIA will determine if Canada requires additional import controls.

The CFIA will also implement enhanced interim monitoring and sampling measures for papayas from Mexico. This will add an additional safeguard to Canada’s existing import controls. CFIA maintains rigorous controls and tracking systems for imported food.

As officials are still investigating the Salmonella outbreak in Mexico, these measures will be adjusted, as warranted, to ensure the Canadian food supply remains protected.

The CFIA issued a Health Hazard Alert on July 23 with subsequent recall for papayas from Agromod Produce, Inc, a Texas-based company, due to a potential Salmonella contamination. The papayas had been imported from Mexico and distributed in the United States and to four provinces in Canada. This recall was related to the recent Salmonella agona outbreak that was linked to 100 illnesses in the United States.

There have been two reported illness of Salmonella agona in Canada; however, both cases had indicated consuming papayas while travelling in Mexico.

The CFIA, in collaboration with our government partners, will take all necessary steps to protect the safety of the Canadian food supply.

For more information on Salmonella , please see the CFIA website.

Consumers and industry can call the CFIA at 1-800-442-2342 / TTY 1-800-465-7735 (8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern time, Monday to Friday).

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