Nov 28, 2019 2:16 AM

Lawsuit filed over hepatitis A outbreak linked to berries

Posted Nov 28, 2019 2:16 AM

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — An Omaha woman who contracted hepatitis A after eating blackberries she bought at a Fresh Thyme grocery store has sued the company.

The woman who filed the lawsuit Wednesday, Kerrie Tabaka, said she was hospitalized for a week for treatment of hepatitis A and continues to experience fatigue and other symptoms.

Earlier this month, health officials warned consumers in 11 states against eating some berries bought from the Fresh Thyme chain. Federal and state health officials have confirmed 14 cases of hepatitis A, including six in Nebraska, as part of the outbreak in Nebraska, Indiana, Minnesota, Michigan and Wisconsin.

Fresh Thyme officials didn’t immediately respond to the lawsuit filed Wednesday. The company has said it is cooperating with investigators to identify the source of the contamination.

Hepatitis A is a virus that infects the liver and can cause mild, flu-like symptoms for several weeks. According to the World Health Organization, a small proportion of people infected with the virus could die from fulminant hepatitis.

“Hepatitis A in berries has been generally a problem with imports,” said Tabaka’s lawyer, Bill Marler. “We look forward to getting to the bottom of where these berries were grown and processed and how this potentially deadly pathogen contaminated the berries.”

The Food and Drug Administration last week urged consumers in Nebraska, Indiana, Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Minnesota, Ohio and Pennsylvania to not to eat any fresh blackberries bought from Fresh Thyme between Sept. 9 and Sept. 30.

Anyone who froze the berries for later use should throw them out, the FDA said.

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Nov 28, 2019 2:16 AM
Chadron business helping community with food, toy drive


Panhandle Post

A local Chadron business is helping the community with a food and toy drive.

Racheal's ReThreads and Consignment is hosting a food and toy drive through Dec. 21. You can drop off items at 261 Main Street in Chadron.

"It's something that I've always wanted to do," said Racheal's ReThreads owner, Racheal Miller. "At the same time I've been there and there's not really a whole lot of resources for people around here to help them."

Miller said people can donate new or used toys, board games, nonperishable food items, gift cards to buy nonperishable items, and monetary donations. She said they will accept checks, and donations from credit cards.

Miller reminds residents that they will get a 20% discount in the store when they donate to the food and toy drive. She added that Chadron State College students, first responders, and teachers in Chadron receive a 10% discount when shopping at the store. That would in turn be a total of 30% when donating.

You can find more information about the food and toy drive on the Racheal's ReThreads facebook page here: