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FDA IDs farm in salmonella cantaloupe outbreak

U.S. health officials have identified Chamberlain Farm Produce Inc. of Owensville, Ind., as one possible source of cantaloupes tied to an outbreak of salmonella food poisoning that now has sickened 178 people in 21 states. Two people have died.

Federal Food and Drug Administration officials warned late Wednesday that consumers should not eat melons from the previously unidentified farm.

FDA officials were under pressure from food safety advocates to release the name of the grower that now has voluntarily recalled the rest of this year’s cantaloupe crop because of detection of a strain of salmonella Typhimurium.

The two deaths occurred in Kentucky. Sixty-two people have been hospitalized nationwide after eating salmonella-tainted fruit, officials said.

FDA officials added that the investigation into the outbreak is continuing and that other possible sources could be identified.

The cantaloupe in question was shipped to seven states – Indiana, Kentucky, Missouri, Tennessee, Ohio, Illinois and Wisconsin – though further shipment was likely.

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