Health & Medicine

16 Kentuckians diagnosed with salmonella strain connected with now-recalled melon

A strain of salmonella connected to pre-cut melon sold in several states has sickened people in Kentucky, according to the Department for Public Health.

The state department announced Monday that 16 Kentuckians had been diagnosed with the salmonella carrau strain.

The strain has been linked to pre-cut melon by the Centers for Disease Control. The affected melons include watermelon, honeydew and cantaloupe. The products were distributed in 16 states, including Kentucky.

Caito Foods voluntarily recalled their cut melon products, which were prepared in an Indianapolis facility, according to the Food and Drug Administration.

Not every product is clearly labeled as being produced by Caito Foods, so it is recommended that consumers should not purchase, eat, sell or serve pre-cut melons, according to the state public health department.

Most people diagnosed with salmonella start displaying symptoms of diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps 12 to 72 hours after the contaminated food is eaten, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

Salmonella carrau is a rare strain of salmonella that is known to appear in imported melons, according to the FDA. Authorities are working to trace the affected melons to a country, and potentially farm, of origin.

Nationally, 93 cases have been reported in 9 states, according to the Centers for Disease Control. There have been 23 people hospitalized, but no deaths have been reported.