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28 Now Dead In Listeria Outbreak In Cantaloupe

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CANTALOUPE DEATHS
FILE - In this Sept. 28, 2011, file photo, cantaloupes rot in the afternoon heat on a field on the Jensen Farms near Holly, Colo. Pools of water on the floor and old, hard-to-clean equipment at the farm's cantaloupe-packing facility were probably to blame for the deadliest outbreak of foodborne illness in 25 years, the Food and Drug Administration said Wednesday, Oct. 19, 2011. Government investigators found positive samples of listeria bacteria on equipment in the Jensen Farms packing facility | AP

WASHINGTON -- The death toll in an outbreak of listeria in cantaloupe is still growing as federal health authorities report new deaths in Colorado, Kansas and Missouri.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Tuesday that there now are 28 deaths linked to the outbreak in a dozen states. The CDC said 133 people have been sickened in 26 states, including the deaths.

The tainted Colorado cantaloupes are off of store shelves by now but since the symptoms of listeria can take up to two months to appear, federal officials said they will monitor the outbreak until November at least.

Deaths also have been reported in Indiana, Louisiana, Maryland, Nebraska, New Mexico, New York, Oklahoma, Texas and Wyoming.

Jensen Farms in Holly, Colo., recalled the cantaloupes Sept. 14.

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