If You Bought This at Trader Joe's, Throw It Out Now, CDC Says

Twenty people across eight states have become ill from the snack so far.

For some shoppers, a visit to Trader Joe's isn't just a way to stock up on food for the week: It's a full-blown lifestyle. The store has managed to maintain an intensely devoted fan base who return in droves for the company's popular brand items and affordable prices. But before you dive into your latest Trader Joe's haul, you might want to double-check what's in your bags after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a new safety warning about one of the products sold there. Read on to see which food item you should be throwing away immediately.

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The CDC issued a warning about Citterio brand Salame Sticks sold at Trader Joe's.

Salami sticks resting in a mesh metal bowl.

On Oct. 23, the CDC issued a food safety alert that warns anyone who purchased Citterio brand Premium Italian-Style Salame Sticks at Trader Joe's not to consume the product due to a recently established link with a salmonella outbreak. However, the agency still warns that products purchased from other stores could also be contaminated with the bacteria and emphasizes they should not be eaten.

The CDC says customers who purchased the Citterio Salame Sticks should throw them away immediately.

man throwing away black trash back
Shutterstock / Mike_shots

According to the agency's food safety alert, any customers who purchased the Citterio Salame Sticks should throw the products out immediately, regardless of the best-by date printed on the packaging. It also advises that any containers or surfaces that have come in contact with the product should be washed with hot soapy water or run through the dishwasher immediately to help prevent cross-contamination.

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The outbreak has sickened 20 people across eight states

Senior man with stomach pain

The CDC says it issued the alert upon investigating a salmonella outbreak. It was found that eight out of nine people who were interviewed about foods they ate before getting sick reported eating or maybe eating the product.

So far, 20 illnesses have been reported in total across eight states, including California, Illinois, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, and Virginia. The agency added that "investigators are still working to determine if additional products may be contaminated."

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Contact your doctor if you experience any severe salmonella poisoning symptoms.

View of young woman suffering from stomachache on sofa at home. Woman sitting on bed and having stomach ache. Young woman suffering from abdominal pain while sitting on sofa at home

The health agency advises that the most commonly reported symptoms of salmonella poisoning are diarrhea, fever, and stomach cramps, which usually start anywhere from six hours to six days after ingesting the bacteria. And while most people recover without medical treatment within four to seven days, others may be at a higher risk of more serious sickness.

"Some people—especially children younger than five years, adults 65 years and older, and people with weakened immune systems—may experience more severe illnesses that require medical treatment or hospitalization," the CDC warns. The agency advises that anyone who experiences severe symptoms should call their doctor right away, including diarrhea and a fever higher than 102 degrees Fahrenheit, diarrhea for more than three days that is not improving, bloody diarrhea, excess vomiting that prevents you from keeping liquids down, and signs of dehydration such as reduced urination, dry mouth and throat, and dizziness when standing up.

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Zachary Mack
Zach is a freelance writer specializing in beer, wine, food, spirits, and travel. He is based in Manhattan. Read more
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