Authorities are warning people to check their freezers—for food bought as far back as 2014. It's one of the largest food recalls in recent memory, affecting well over 400 products from CRF Frozen Foods in Pasco, Wash., sold under more than 40 different brand names in all 50 states, Canada, and Mexico, per the AP. So far, eight people have been sickened by listeria that's genetically similar to that found in CRF vegetables, including six in California, and two have died in Maryland and Washington, though listeria was not the primary cause of death. The initial recall started April 22, covering 11 frozen vegetable products. On May 2, CRF expanded it to include all frozen organic and traditional fruit and vegetable products out of its Washington plant since May 1, 2014.
The CRF plant closed two weeks ago and the company is still trying to pinpoint the source of the contamination, a rep says. A CDC rep says consumers should check the online recall lists and discard the affected products from their freezers. Products were both packaged for sale as individual products and repackaged by places like Piggly Wiggly, Kroger, and ConAgra foods as ingredients in a host of other store-brand and private-label products for stores like Trader Joe's and Costco. Also, retailers including Target and regional distributors such as Hy-Vee Foods have recently recalled products made by Tokyo-based Ajinomoto Windsor due to the company recalling 70 of its Asian variety products that contain CRF vegetables—about 47 million pounds worth—some of which were also sold in Canada and Mexico.