Chamberlain Farms of Owensville, Indiana is the cantaloupe grower linked to the Salmonella outbreak that has sickened 178 people in 21 states, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has announced. So far, 62 people have been hospitalized and two have died from Salmonella Typhimurium infections.
State and federal investigators who are working together on the investigation of the outbreak, say that cantaloupe from the farm is a likely source of the outbreak but there may be others. Chamberlain has issued a recall of cantaloupes that were initially shipped to Indiana, Kentucky, Missouri, Tennessee, Ohio, Illinois, and Wisconsin and were then redistributed. Illnesses in the each of the 21 states are as follows: Alabama (13), Arkansas (3), California (2), Georgia (3), Illinois (21), Indiana (18), Iowa (7), Kentucky (56), Massachusetts (2), Michigan (6), Minnesota (4), Mississippi (5), Missouri (12), New Jersey (2), North Carolina (3), Ohio (4), Pennsylvania (2), South Carolina (3), Tennessee (6), Texas (2), and Wisconsin (4).
Many grocery stores including, Krogers, Marsh, Meijer, Schnucks and Wal-mart (Walmart) have removed cantaloupe from their shelves. In Mississippi, one of the people who became ill reported purchasing a whole cantaloupe from Walmart.
Symptoms of a Salmonella infection, called salmonellosis, include fever, diarrhea, and abdominal cramps which usually develop 12 to 72 hours after ingestion of the bacteria and last up to seven days. Sometimes, the diarrhea becomes so severe patients need to be hospitalized. And, should the infection spread from the intestines to the blood stream, it can be fatal if it isn’t treated promptly with antibiotics. Health officials advise anyone who has eaten the cantaloupe and develops these symptoms to see a health care provider.