The recent recall of Listeria-tainted vegetables elicited mixed reactions from many consumers on social media. An observant Facebook user posted that food recalls have been occurring way too frequently nowadays, generating likes from her friends in the US.

Another commenter stated that checking veggies is imperative, while a few poked fun at the situation. Many social media users slammed the retailers that carried the recalled products.

One harmful germ

Listeria is a harmful germ that can be concealed in many foods. The disease-causing organism may cause serious or fatal infections particularly in young kids, pregnant women, seniors, and individuals with weakened immune systems.

Among the telltale signs of being exposed to Listeria bacteria are a severe headache, muscle aches, diarrhea and other gastrointestinal symptoms, stiffness of the neck, loss of balance, and other nervous system problems.

Listeria infection outbreak is nothing new. Back in the 1990s, some products that were contaminated with Listeria included hotdogs and other deli meat. In March this year, consumer reports warning Americans not to consume certain brands of contaminated raw-milk soft cheeses went viral.

Today, the tagged items include fresh produce. Soft cheeses with unpasteurized milk, sprouts, melons, broccoli, cauliflower, and asparagus. Tainted vegetables were sold at Safeway, Walmart, Albertsons, H-E-B, and Aldi stores across Canada and the US.

Will product recalls end?

The recent health alert over Listeria-contaminated Food Products alarmed many people.

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It led to quick action by several suppliers and supermarkets operating across the US and Canada. Mann Packing in California opted to voluntarily recall its products, yet clarified that were no reported illnesses linked to its products. Product recalls were ordered, nonetheless, following a random test conducted in Canada, which produced a single positive result for Listeria.

Among the brands recalled were Kohlrabi Salad Blend carried by Trader Joe’s, Little Salad Bar products sold at Aldi, Archer Farms products sold at Target, Signature Farms products sold at Albertsons, and varieties of cauliflower and broccoli sold at Walmart. The vegetables bear the "best if used by" dates from October 11 through October 20.

This October, several product recalls were ordered. Grocery company Food Lion, which operates in 10 states in the US, recalled chicken tenders from select stores due to a label error – milk was not shown on the ingredient label.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued several reminders to consumers to safeguard their health. Guidelines on storing food, as well as a detailed listing of specific conditions that promote the growth of bacteria, including Listeria, were underscored.