Valdosta tomato sales on the rise - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Valdosta tomato sales on the rise

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June 13, 2008

Valdosta - At least seven Georgians are sick from eating tainted tomatoes but health officials say Georgia-grown tomatoes aren't the problem.

They believe six people in Atlanta and one in northeast Georgia got salmonella from eating contaminated tomatoes.

The number of confirmed illnesses nationwide is more than 225.

Farmer Brown's Market in Valdosta says the outbreak hurt their business.

Tomato sales went down. But they seem to be going back up now that people are getting word that Georgia tomatoes are safe.

"Its thought that the contaminated tomatoes are from an outside source. Locally grown tomatoes are definitely safe," says Jonathan Fairley of the South Health District.

"It's a gradual increase in the restaurant side of sales," says Robert Martin, Whole Sale Manager at Farmer Brown.  "As far as retail is concerned it'd doing very well."

Area markets expect sales to be back to normal next week.  Especially those, like Farmer Brown's, who only sell regionally grown tomatoes.

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