The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) is warning consumers not to eat Harry’s Berries Salsa (mild or hot flavors) or Harry’s Berries Dilled Beans, packed by Gean Farms, Inc., because they may have been improperly produced, making them susceptible to contamination with Clostridium botulinum. No illnesses have been linked to any of the affected products at this time.
Gean Farms, Inc., of Oxnard, California, is voluntarily recalling the products after CDPH discovered they were produced without the required controls to prevent botulism toxin. Ingestion of botulism toxin from improperly processed foods can lead to serious illness and death.
These products were sold under the Gean Farms, Inc. label and packaged in one-pint glass canning jars with screw-on metal lids, labeled as “Harry’s Berries Salsa” and “Harry’s Berries Dilled Beans.” These products do not contain production or date codes. Additional product information, including photos of affected products, can be found on the CDPH website.
The products were sold between May 2011 and November 2012 at certified farmers markets in Los Angeles, Ventura and Santa Barbara counties.
Botulism toxin is odorless and colorless. Symptoms generally begin 18- to-36 hours after eating contaminated food, but can occur as early as six hours, or as late as ten days. Symptoms typically begin with blurred or double vision, followed by trouble speaking and swallowing, progressing to muscle weakness that starts in the upper body. Botulism can lead to life-threatening paralysis of the muscles used in breathing.