September 2, 2014

Salmonella, E.coli Cases in MN Linked to Contact with Animals

Petting zoo E. coli outbreak

Salmonella and E.coli infections from contact with animals have been reported in Minnesota this summer. Sone of the illnesses were from pets, others were from petting zoos. Thirteen people who visited petting zoos at county fairs during July in Minnesota were sickened by E.coli.  Lab test showed that source of the illnesses was the Zerebko Zoo Tran traveling petting zoo which made appearances at the Nashwauk 4th of July Festival, July 3-5 , the Polk County Fair, July 9-13; the Rice County Fair, July 15-20;  and the Olmsted County Fair, July 21-27. Two of the 13 who were sickened developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), which can cause kidney failure. Three Minnesotans were part of a 36-state Salmonella outbreak linked to pet bearded dragons. The lizards that are native to Australia … [Read more...]

E. coli Sickens 122 in Alberta

E. coli Bacteria

At least 122 people in Alberta have contracted E.coli O157:H7, infections during the last month, according to the Canadian Press. There are 59 confirmed cases in Calgary, 48 in Edmonton, seven in the South,  six in the North and two the Central zone. Health authorities have not yet determined the source of the outbreak. Sprouts have been mentioned as possible source. Some of the case patients who were hospitalized earlier this month told investigators they ate fresh bean sprouts prior to becoming ill. E.coli can cause serious, sometimes life-threatening illness. Abdominal cramps and diarrhea that is sometimes bloody are the main symptoms. Anyone experiencing these symptoms should see a doctor. Canadian health officials remind consumers that ground beef should be cooked to an … [Read more...]

Potato Salad Ingredient Likely Cause of Fond du Lac E.coli Outbreak


An ingredient in potato salad is the likely cause of an E.coli outbreak that sickened 60 people on the Fond du Lac reservation in MN, according to a report in the Pine Journal.  The 60 case patients attended three different events between July 11-16 that were all catered by the same source. Public health investigators and tribal officials are not revealing the name of the caterer. A state health department spokesman told the paper that a review of the caterers operations found no cause for concern and that there were no signs of any cross contamination. Potato salad was served at two of the three events. Testing on the ingredients has not turned up any positives for E. coli, but that could be because all of the contaminated ingredients had been consumes aleady. The Minnesota … [Read more...]

Raw Goat Milk Cheese Recalled in WI for E. coli O111

Raw Goat Milk Cheese E. coli O111 recall

SW Wisconsin Dairy Goat Products Coop of Mount Sterling, Wisconsin is recalling Raw Milk Mild Cheddar Cheese because it may be contaminated with E. coli O111:H8. This is a shiga-toxin producing bacteria that can cause serious illness and can lead to kidney failure and death. No illnesses have been reported to date in connection with the consumption of this product. The product was distributed in the Midwest  and Southwest regions of the United States. It was sent through distributorship in Wisconsin and Georgia. From those states the cheese was sent to retail stores in the Midwest and Southwest. This bacteria is one of the six TEC strains that are a serious health concern. The cheese is Lot Code 103-114. It was packed in an 8 ounce cryovac retail piece with the code on a sticker … [Read more...]

Cheese Recalled in Canada for Possible E. coli O26:H11

La fromagerie Hamel cheese recall

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency and La Fromagerie Hamel are recalling St-Felicien lait cru France (Rhone-Alpes) cheese because it may be contaminated with E. coli O26:H11. The cheese was distributed at the retail level in Quebec. No illnesses have been reported in relation to the consumption of this product. The recalled cheese was sold in 180 gram packages. There is no UPC number. The codes on the product are 11772104 and Best Before 19/08/2014. If you purchased this product, do not eat it. Food contaminated with E. coli bacteria will not look, smell, or taste spoiled but can make you very sick. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, and watery and/or bloody diarrhea. This recall was triggered by a recall in another country. … [Read more...]

E. coli Outbreak on Fond du Lac Reservation

E. coli Bacteria

An E. coli outbreak has sickened between six and 12 members of the Fond du Lac band of Lake Superior Chippewa on the reservation in northeastern MN near Cloquet, about 20 miles west of Duluth. Health authorities say they have not yet determined the food source of the outbreak or the specific bacterial strain. The Minnesota Department of Health is currently investigating an E.coli O111 outbreak in the Twin Cities area. That outbreak has sickened at least 15 people, some of whom ate at Applebee's restaurants between June 23 and June 29 before becoming ill. Four of those sickened in the Twin Cities area were hospitalized and are recovering. Labs do not normally test for E. coli O111, a less common strain of the bacteria, so some cases may not yet be diagnosed. Symptoms of an E. coli … [Read more...]

Researchers Find Cinnamon a Natural Antibacterial Agent

E. coli

Researchers at Washington State University have found that cinnamon may help prevent food poisoning by killing pathogenic bacteria. Their work has been published in Food Control Journal. It turns out that cinnamomum cassia oil is very effective at killing the top six non-O157 STEC (shiga toxin producing E. coli) bacteria. The major component in C. cassia oil is cinnamaldehyde. The government recently declared the six non-O157 STEC bacteria as adulterants and require testing for those bacteria in beef slaughter plants.There is a "zero tolerance" policy for those bacteria in raw ground beef and trimmings. The essential oil "killed several strains of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli" according to the researchers, and it is effective in low concentrations. Just 10 drops in a liter … [Read more...]

E. coli Wrongful Death Takes Community Volunteer in Alabama


The Alabama E. coli death of a 71-year-old man who served as a volunteer in his community is at the center of a food poisoning outbreak in Morgan County that remains under investigation. The E. coli infections have been associated with a luncheon hosted by the Alabama Cooperative Extension Service (ACES). The Alabama Department of Public Health has promised to release a summary of its investigation when the outbreak report is final. The deceased man, Clarence Hampton, was a senior companion volunteer for the Community Action Partnership of North Alabama in Decatur. The leader of that organization, Chief Executive Officer Michael Tubbs, has said that at least 24 employees and volunteers of the group fell sick after the luncheon. Hampton's sister said she was one of the attendees who … [Read more...]

No E. coli in Recalled Dungeness Raw Cream, State Tests Show


Dungeness Valley Creamery issued a recall on June 28 for raw cream with an expiration date of July 2 for possible E. coli contamination, but tests from the the Washington State Department of Agriculture found the product free of the bacteria which causes serious, sometimes fatal illness. A post on the company's Facebook page said, "WSDA Lab Results 'did not confirm' the presence of e. coli in our Raw Cream sample dated 7/2. Our independent recall was in 'an abundance of caution', and is thankfully no longer necessary at this time. For those customers who disposed of, returned, or still otherwise wish to exchange those products with a 7/2 best by date, we will be happy to continue to process those requests.We appreciate your support and understanding. Thank you!" Laws governing the … [Read more...]

Study Finds Non-O157 STEC Bacteria in U.S. Cattle

Ground Beef Thermometer

A study published in the Journal of Food Protection has found shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) bacteria in ground beef sold in the U.S. at the retail level. Cattle are reservoirs for E. coli O26, O45, O103, O111, O121, O145, and O157. Those bacteria can cause serious illness and death in humans. STEC bacteria were declared adulterants in ground beef by the USDA last year. This study estimates the prevalence of non-O157 STEC and E. coli O157 in naturally infected beef cows at post-weaning, finishing, and at slaughter. The study also tested STEC presence in finished ground beef. They found non-O157 STEC in 8 to 39% of cows and 2 to 38% of steer calves. These findings are evidence that beef cows and steer calves shed non-O17 STEC bacteria at post-weaning and before they go into the … [Read more...]

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