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Wal-Mart recalls fruit because of possible listeria contamination

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Posted: Wednesday, July 23, 2014 9:16 am

As a precautionary measure, area Wal-Marts and Sam’s Clubs removed from their shelves produce possibly affected by a nationwide voluntary recall, a spokesman said.

Wal-Mart spokesman Brian Nick said produce was pulled from the Killeen, Harker Heights and Copperas Cove Wal-Marts, as well as Harker Heights’ Sam’s Club.

“Our supplier notified us of the voluntary recall, and as soon as we were aware, we took immediate action for all impacted stores and clubs,” Nick said.

The supplier, California-based Wawona Packing Co., issued a notice July 19 of voluntarily recalling whole peaches, nectarines, plums and pluots packed between June 1 and July 12 due to the possible contamination of listeria monocytogenes.

According to a news release from the company on the Food and Drug Administration’s website, the organism can cause serious and fatal infections in young and elderly individuals with weakened immune systems. The recall was initiated based on internal company testing, with negative subsequent tests.

“We are aware of no illnesses related to the consumption of these products,” said Brent Smittcamp, president of Wawona Packing Co. “By taking the precautionary step of recalling products, we will minimize even the slightest risk to public health, and that is our priority.”

Nick said Wal-Mart uses different produce suppliers, including the California company, and does not know of any illnesses related to the recall.

Customers of impacted stores and clubs will be issued full refunds with proof of purchase, he said.

The Los Angeles Times contributed to this report.

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