October 24, 2014

Mexican Restaurant Salmonella Outbreaks in Illinois, Kentucky

Salmonella bacteria

Public health officials in Illinois and Kentucky are investigating separate outbreaks of Salmonella associated with independent Mexican restaurants. Combined, the Hacienda Don Villo outbreak in Channahon, Illinois, and the Casa Mexicana outbreak in Madisonville, Kentucky, have sickened about 50 people. In Kentucky, one of the outbreak patients has died. “Every outbreak of Salmonella carries the prospect of life-long illness for unsuspecting families,’’ said Fred Pritzker, founder of national food safety law firm Pritzker Olsen Attorneys. Pritzker said too many people downplay the burdens of Salmonella infection, which can trigger an assortment of long-term illness in some patients. In others, Salmonellosis resolves itself with no medical attention and the illness is over. Studies … [Read more...]

Kentucky Salmonella Probe at Casa Mexicana Has Breakthrough

Salmonella-bacteria

Casa Mexicana  in Madisonville, Kentucky, has been confirmed as the source of a deadly Salmonella outbreak after food poisoning investigators in Hopkins County found the outbreak strain of Salmonella bacteria in food from the restaurant. Using a technique known as pulsed field gel electrophoresis (PFGE), lab researchers derived the genetic fingerprint of  the pathogen from patient cultures and matched those prints to organisms in food from the restaurant. Food Poisoning Bulletin learned from Public Health Director Denise Beach in Madisonville that the Casa Mexicana outbreak has sickened 15 people and killed one person in the area. Five of the confirmed victims were hospitalized and there has not been a new report of onset of illness in more than a week, she said. The restaurant is … [Read more...]

Walmart, Schnucks, Other Chains Recall Cantaloupe

Jensen brothers are sentenced

Several major grocery chains have recalled the cantaloupes associated with the Salmonella Typhimurium outbreak that has sickened 178 people in 21 states. So far, WalMart, Schnucks, Meijer, and Marsh have pulled the recalled cantaloupes from their shelves. Kroger has pulled cantaloupes recalled by Burch Farms for Listeria. The cantaloupes, produced and processed by Chamberlain Farm Produce Inc. of Owensville, Indiana, were shipped from June 21, 2012 to August 16, 2012. The farm started recalling the cantaloupes on August 17, 2012. The outbreak is likely to grow because of this long time frame. Cities that are affected by this outbreak include Lousiville, Lexington, and Owensboro, Kentucky; Chicago, Aurora, and Rockford, Illinois; Indianapolis, Fort Wayne, and South Bend, Indiana; Kansas … [Read more...]

Kentucky Lab Links Cantaloupes To Deadly Salmonella Outbreak

Kentucky-Cantaloupe-Salmone

The Kentucky public health lab has established that Salmonella found in cantaloupes grown on a farm in southwestern Indiana matches the strain that has sickened 141 people in a 20 state outbreak that has hospitalized 31 people and killed two, according to the Kentucky Department of Public  Health.  "This finding is 'smoking gun' evidence that cantaloupe from the Indiana farm caused this outbreak," said Attorney Fred Pritzker, a national food safety lawyer who recently won $4.5 million for a client sickened in another outbreak. The Salmonella deaths occurred in Kentucky where at least 50 people have been sickened since the beginning of July. Public health officials are investigating whether other clusters of Salmonella food poisoning cases in the state might also be part of the … [Read more...]

Kentucky E.coli Outbreak Over, Officials Say

E. coli kills two children inPacific Northwest

An E.coli outbreak in Kentucky that sickened three Kindergarteners, two of whom remain hospitalized, is over, heath officials have declared. “At his point, the investigation into the outbreak has ended,” Beth Fisher, a spokeswoman for the Kentucky Center For Health and Family Services (KCHFS) told Food Poisoning Bulletin this morning. All three children attend school at Stanford Elementary in Lincoln County, where results of environmental and food sample tests this week were negative for E.coli. A source for the outbreak has not been determined, but the school has been ruled out as the origin of the outbreak, Fisher said. With classes ending next week and no new cases reported, health officials say the outbreak is over. Symptoms of an E.coli infection include abdominal cramping … [Read more...]

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