Border Importer In Salmonella Outbreak Has Past Violations

April 29, 2013

TUCSON, Ariz. -- Testing is underway for further evidence of salmonella in cucumbers imported to Arizona from a Sinaloa company. The Arizona importer of the cucumbers has a close relationship with the Sinaloan grower and has had a health violation in the past.

Federal records show the Food and Drug Administration refused imports from Tricar Sales in Rio Rico, Ariz. in 2011. According to the FDA, a decomposed substance was found at the company during an inspection.

Up until last week’s enforcement, Tricar was importing cucumbers from Miracle Greenhouse of Culiacán. According to Rod Sbragia, manager of Tricar Sales, the family owns both the Mexican farm and the import company itself.

"We’re doing everything we can to make sure that we’re working with them to try and find the cause whether it was from us or some other avenue," Sbragia said.

Seventy-three cases of salmonella were found in 18 states, including nine in Arizona. No deaths were reported but 14 people were hospitalized.