The fall season of pumpkin picking and corn mazes may be over, but the CDC has just issued a disturbing warning: avoid eating caramel apples. Caramel apples have killed five people this year, and sickened 28 in 10 states (mostly in Missouri, New Mexico, Minnesota, and Arizona) due to an outbreak of listeria infection from the sticky treats. The CDC is warning consumers to “not eat any pre-packaged, commercially-produced caramel apples, including those with other toppings such as nuts, chocolate or sprinkles, until more information is available.”
Of the 28 people that were sickened, 26 were hospitalized, and nine of the cases involved a pregnant woman or an infant, according to Yahoo. Listeriosis, the infection that most of the victims were diagnosed with, is a severe bacterial infection that usually affects people with weakened immune systems.
All of the cases were diagnosed in October and November. No illnesses have been linked to non-packaged caramel apples, or regular apples.