Dead bat found in Walmart bagged salad prompts rabies investigation

Customers had already eaten a bit of the salad before spotting the carcass

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The Independent US

Walmart stores in Florida have prompted a regional recall after a dead bat was found inside a bag of salad.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Florida Department of Health and the US Food and Drug Administration are investigating after two customers found the dead animal after eating some of the Organic Marketside Spring Mix. 

They alerted authorities, who sent the bat to a CDC lab to be tested for rabies.

Although CDC said transmission of rabies is “extremely uncommon”, it has warned customers not to eat salads from bags. 

It added that “the deteriorated condition of the bat did not allow for CDC to definitely rule out whether this bat had rabies.“

Neither of the customers from southeastern Florida showed any sign of rabies and were both in good health, said the CDC.

No other dead bats have been reported.

Fresh Express has issued a limited recall for salad products sold in a clear container which have a best-used date of 14 April.

“Consumers who may have already purchased the recalled product should discard and not consume it,” the CDC said.

It added that anyone who had eaten the salad and not found “animal material” were not at risk, but they could contact the company for a full refund.

In a statement, Fresh Express said it “takes matters of food safety very seriously and rigorously complies with all food safety regulation”.

The CDC added an advisory for customers: “Anyone who ate the recalled salad product and found animal material in it [should] contact their health department for evaluation.”