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Dole Recalls Bagged Salad; Listeria Possibly Found

Medioimages/Photodisc/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Dole says it is voluntarily recalling 1,039 cases of bagged salad after a random sample tested positive for the Listeria bacteria.

Dole Fresh Vegetables, a division of Dole Food Company, which is based in Westlake Village, Calif., issued the statement Wednesday evening, saying no illnesses have been reported in association with the recall.

The specific product being recalled is 10 oz. Dole Italian Blend, with a “Use-By” date of Aug. 20, distributed in eight U.S. states: Florida, Alabama, North Carolina, South Carolina, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Mississippi and Virginia.

The company said the recall is in response to an “isolated instance in which a sample of Dole Italian Blend salad yielded a positive result for Listeria monocytogenes in a random sample test conducted by the North Carolina Department of Agriculture.”

However, Dan Ragan, director of the food and drug protection division of North Carolina’s agriculture department, said the testing did not take place in the state. He said samples were sent to his state’s agriculture department as part of a regular practice through the USDA’s Microbiological Data Program, a national food-borne pathogen monitoring program implemented in 2001.

Ragan said he does not know where the sample originated or where the testing took place.

A request for comment from Dole was not immediately returned.

Last year, 30 people died after being infected with one of four outbreak-associated strains of the bacteria, Listeria moncytogenes, and one ill pregnant woman had a miscarriage, the Center for Disease Control reported. A total of 146 people from 28 states were reported to the CDC as infected.

Dole said in a statement that it was “coordinating closely” with regulatory officials.

Because the product is two days past its “Use-By” date, Dole said “it is highly unlikely that any product is still available at retail….”

But the company said, “Retailers should check their inventories and store shelves to confirm that none of the product is mistakenly present or available for purchase by consumers or in warehouse inventories.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

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