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Urgent fruit recall: These berries might be carrying norovirus

Published May 22nd, 2022 9:12AM EDT
Raspberries in a bowl.
Image: mars58/Adobe

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Food products that test positive for bacteria and viruses are usually recalled to reduce the risk of infection. And most food-related recalls follow positive testing for a type of bacteria, whether it’s E. coli, Salmonella, or Listeria. But viruses can also be found in food. And now, a virus is responsible for a brand new fruit recall. It’s the norovirus, which was found on samples coming from a lot of Below Zero raspberries, thus triggering a recall.

Below Zero raspberries recall

Manatab just issued a recall for Below Zero Whole Raspberries IQF following the detection of the norovirus. The announcement comes from the Canadian recalls authority.

The agency reveals that a single Below Zero raspberries lot is included in the recall. Here are the identifiers:

  • Below Zero Whole Raspberries IQF – 1 kg – Lot #: Code XT21253, PO #: M14475, BB: 2023-SE-09; UPC 0 69821 06020 4

However, the recall report doesn’t explain how the contamination occurred or how it was detected. It’s unclear whether there have been any cases of illness due to people eating these frozen raspberries.

Below Zero raspberries recall: Package example.
Below Zero raspberries recall: Package example. Image source: Mantab

Customers who purchased frozen raspberries recently should check their freezers and see whether they have any berries from Below Zero. Manatab sold the product in the following Canadian provinces: Alberta, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Ontario, and Quebec.

Symptoms of a norovirus infection

The group of noroviruses is responsible for illnesses that mainly have digestive symptoms. You can experience nausea, vomiting, diarrhea (watery or loose), stomach pain or cramps, low-grade fever, and muscle pain.

You’ll start feeling ill suddenly after consuming food or water containing the norovirus. Alternatively, you can catch it via close contact with someone who has it.

Symptoms can appear 12 to 48 hours after exposure to the virus. Eating the Below Zero raspberries from this recall poses a risk of infection, as the pathogen can survive cold temperatures.

The symptoms can last 1 to 3 days. You might also infect others in your proximity while you’re experiencing symptoms. The virus can even be present in your stool for a few weeks after your symptoms go away.

The Mayo Clinic explains that doctors can diagnose a norovirus infection based on symptoms, but a stool sample is needed to confirm it. People with weakened immune systems or other medical conditions can experience more severe illnesses and will require a test. Young children and older adults are also at risk of developing complications, like severe dehydration and even death.

Below Zero raspberries recall: Package example.
Below Zero raspberries recall: Package example. Image source: Mantab

Most people will recover without treatment within a few days. The most important thing to do is to drink lots of fluids to prevent dehydration.

What you should do

If you’ve purchased Below Zero raspberries from the recalled lot, you should absolutely not eat them. Instead, throw the product out, or return it to the place of purchase.

As you can see above, the product has a best-by date of September 9th, 2023. That’s why it’s crucial to ensure you don’t have it stored in your freezer, or you might forget about the recall and the infection risk.

Also, you should contact your doctor if you think you’ve experienced symptoms consistent with a norovirus infection.

Finally, make sure you check out the Canadian Food Inspection Agency’s recall announcement at this link. There, you’ll find contact information for the Candian recalls authority. Manatab’s website is available over here in case you need to reach out to the company.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.