Plum Crazy Recall, Mass Shoppers Warned as Listeria Scare Yanks Peaches, Plums, Nectarines from Shelves

Plum Crazy Recall, Mass Shoppers Warned as Listeria Scare Yanks Peaches, Plums, Nectarines from ShelvesSource: Unsplash/ Andra Ion
Sam Cavanaugh
Published on November 28, 2023

In a twist that'll have peach pie aficionados thinking twice before preheating the oven, a nationwide recall of popular stone fruits, including peaches, plums, and nectarines, has been triggered due to a Listeria scare, and Massachusetts isn't immune to the fruit fiasco. MassLive reports that multiple brands of these succulent sweets, found tucked away on the shelves of grocery giants from Publix to Walmart and even Aldi, have been plucked from distribution effective immediately.

Caught with contaminated stone fruit in your crisper? It's time to toss them, as these possibly tainted treats have been sold in stores from May 1, 2022, through November 15, 2022, and once again from May 1, 2023, up to this November, the Boston 25 News shared. If the sticker madness has got you reeling, here's a cheat sheet: yellow peaches might bear 4044 or 4038, white peaches are tagged 4401, find 4036 or 4378 on yellow nectarines, 3035 on white nectarines, and plums red or black flaunt 4042 or 4040, respectively.

"The firm has directly notified their customers who received recalled products, and this advisory will be updated as more information becomes available," the FDA mentioned, confirming that while the fruits of our labor are past their prime, there's a chilling chance they've been cozied up in consumers' freezers. A bevy of brands are implicated, including HMC Farms and Signature Farms, the former identified by bags and the latter by the number 6359 shining from a sticker presumably supposed to signify freshness but now signaling potential peril. Customers who find themselves staring down a bag of stone-cold suspect fruits should consider their kitchen a potential crime scene, where everything from cutting boards to canning tools must be sanitized post-haste in an effort to prevent the spread of the pesky pathogen, as reported by MassLive.

Now, while the common cold of fruit maladies this is not: facing off with Listeria is a heavyweight bout of fever, muscle aches, and occasionally more sinister symptoms like a stiff neck and convulsions, things could get dire for those with compromised immune systems—and let's not start on the risks it poses for pregnant women. As MassLive chillingly detailed, the bacterium's hit list has already tallied up at least one casualty and hospitalized over ten individuals nation-wide due to this outbreak.

So here's the rub: if you're sitting on a fruit-laden freezer, plumb out of answers about whether your stock is safe, the FDA's advice is crystal clear—discard it, don't risk it, it's not worth the gamble; the roulette wheel of food safety has no place in the home kitchen. And for confirmation on your fruit's fate, detailed images and further information can be acquired through the vigilant watchdogs at the FDA, who are closely monitoring this fruit fumble until the final peach has been pitched.