Two women in Florida found a decomposed bat in their Walmart salad, but the CDC says they probably don’t have rabies.
If you thought that pizza you indulged in over the weekend was “bad,” at least it wasn’t a decomposed bat. Two women (in Florida) discovered the dead bat (a Mexican free-tailed bat, sometimes called a Brazilian free-tailed bat) in their salad (Fresh Express’ Organic Marketside Spring Mix) after eating some of the salad. Walmart and Fresh Express have issued a limited recall out of an “abundance of caution” and report that the potentially at-risk salads were only distributed to Walmarts in the southeastern United States.
Meanwhile, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shared a press release describing, among other things, that the bat carcass was too decomposed to be tested for rabies. According to the CDC, the chance of a live rabies virus making its way from the bat to the salad to the women is very low.
Still, the women are being monitored and the CDC recommends post-exposure rabies treatment anyways. If you have eaten Walmart’s Fresh Express’ Organic Marketside Spring Mix and have found animal material in it, the CDC recommends that you too contact your health department for evaluation.
Dan Flynn, editor in chief of Food Safety News, told the New York Times that this kind of stuff happens about once a year. Arguably more concerning, Flynn says these things are usually intentional plants. If it’s any comfort – it shouldn’t really be – finding a decomposed bat in your salad is less of a health risk than Listeria-tainted ice cream or e. coli-laced Mexican food.
In related news, Walmart should probably send Pepsi and United flowers for covering this news cycle.