The Tennessee Department of Health says six people in Tennessee have been sickened by Salmonella-laden cantaloupes.
The outbreak has hit several states, with 50 sick and two dead in Kentucky. Tennessee officials have been coordinating across state lines. They’ve traced the contaminated cantaloupes back to southwestern Indiana, though not to a particular farm.
Tennessee deputy epidemiologist John Dunn says it’s not necessarily the flesh of the melon that’s tainted, but people still get sick.
“It’s actually the outside of the melon that’s contaminated and when the knife goes through, it’s carrying the contamination to the cut melon.”
Dunn says cantaloupes purchased from southwestern Indiana should be trashed. He recommends consumers inquire about where melons are coming from before buying.
Fifty people were sickened last month in a separate salmonella outbreak localized to Humphreys County. They all attended the same picnic. Health officials say the exact cause hasn’t been pinpointed yet.