April 28, 2015

Now 14 Turkey Farms in MN Diagnosed with Bird Flu

Fourteen turkey farms in Minnesota, and an egg-laying facility in Wisconsin, have now been confirmed with the highly pathogenic H5N2 avian influenza, or bird flu. The 14th farm was confirmed today. At leasts 900,000 turkeys in the state have been euthanized as a result of this outbreak. No human infections with the virus have ben detected at this time. The newly affected flocks are in Kandiyohi County, Cottonwood County, Lyon County, Stearns County, and Watonwan County. These farms have been quarantined, meaning movement of poultry and poultry-moving equipment has been restricted. The flocks will be euthanized, and the region will be monitored. The farms will be disinfected, and tested until the farms are confirmed to be free of the virus. In Wisconsin, the USDA has confirmed that … [Read more...]

Campylobacter Causes the Most Raw Milk Outbreaks


Campylobacter is the source of most raw milk outbreaks, according to a new study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The study, which found raw milk outbreaks are on the rise, compared data from the two-year periods 2007-2009 and 2010-2012. Campylobacter causes an illness in humans called campylobacteriosis which produces diarrheal illness, fever, and abdominal cramps that can last up to 10 days. In rare cases, a Campylobacter infection can cause Guillain-Barré syndrome, an illness that causes paralysis and death. In every year from 2007 to 2012, Campylobacter was the source of the majority of raw milk outbreaks, accounting for 81 percent of them overall. E. coli caused the second most with 17 percent, Salmonella was third with 3 percent and Coxiella burnetii was … [Read more...]

Wisconsin Included in Caramel Apple Listeria Outbreak, Recall

Wisconsin has three confirmed cases of listeriosis in the U.S. caramel apple Listeria outbreak and also received deliveries of Happy Apples, a product made in Missouri that has been recalled because it has the potential to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes, according to separate CDC and FDA announcements. The Happy Apple Company recall was announced via the FDA on Christmas Eve, two days after the CDC added a confirmed case of listeriosis to Wisconsin's outbreak count. Now with three caramel apple Listeria cases, Wisconsin is home to 10 percent of the nation's 29 confirmed outbreak patients. Wisconsin's neighbor to the west, Minnesota, has four confirmed cases, including two deaths. A caramel apple lawsuit was filed in California shortly before the recall was announced. Happy … [Read more...]

In Durand Raw Milk Football Team Outbreak, Farm May Be Identified


Wisconsin's Department of Health Services will finally identify the farm that supplied raw milk linked to a large food poisoning outbreak in the west-central town of Durand this fall. Based on numerous accounts, participants in a potluck banquet for the Durand High School football teams were not informed that the milk they were served was unpasteurized. Within days, multiple students were hospitalized and state health investigators ultimately confirmed 38 victims. The outbreak was so severe, the football program was forced to cancel two of its games and school officials marked 150 absences. Stephanie Smiley, a spokeswoman for the  Department of Health Services, told the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel that the raw milk farm could be named in a report on the outbreak that  is due out next … [Read more...]

Durand High School Campylobacter Outbreak Case Count at 22


The Campylobacter outbreak at Durand High School in Pepin County, Wisconsin has now sickened 22 people as of Tuesday, September 30, 2014; all are members of the football team. The Wisconsin Department of Health Services and the Wisconsin State Laboratory of Hygiene have confirmed that the outbreak was caused by Campylobacter bacteria. Campylobacter bacteria has been found in specimens from ill patients. The Pepin County Health Department is working with the DHS and the Durand School District to investigate the outbreak. Public health officials are working to compile a list of food and beverages consumed by ill persons days before they got sick. Campylobacter has a two- to ten-day incubation period. The first symptoms of the illness are muscle pain, headache, and fever, followed by … [Read more...]

Wisconsin School Cancels More Football due to Campylobacter


The Durand School District is continuing to reschedule various student activities as the western Wisconsin community grapples with a sweeping outbreak of Campylobacter food poisoning. According to the official school calendar, Monday's C-squad and junior varsity Panther football games against Amery have been canceled. Meanwhile, school volleyball matches canceled last week have been rescheduled for Thursday. The moves were made as the Wisconsin State Laboratory of Hygiene continues to offer testing for any ill students and staff. The most recent school district announcement notes that the source of the outbreak is still actively under investigation by the Pepin County Health Department and the Wisconsin Department of Health Services. "To date, Campylobacter has been detected in multiple … [Read more...]

Campylobacter Outbreak in Durand, Wisconsin Schools


The Pepin County Health Department says there are eight confirmed cases of Campylobacter infections in students at Durand High School in Pepin County, Wisconsin. The investigation is ongoing, with results still pending for other students. More than 50 other students are sick with flu-like symptoms. In the past five years, there have only been 15 cases total of Campylobacteriosis reported in Pepin County. Campylobacter is a bacteria that can cause serious illness. People become infected by eating food or drinking water that has been contaminated with fecal matter from an animal or a person who is sick. The symptoms of a Campylobacter infection include muscle pain, headache, and fever, followed by watery and/or bloody diarrhea, abdominal pain, and nausea. The first symptoms usually … [Read more...]

Crave Brothers Listeria Cheese Outbreak Exemplifies Who is at Risk


The deputy chief of enteric diseases for the CDC's epidemiology branch, Barbara Mahon, was recently quoted as saying that Listeria is one of the rarer food-borne illnesses, but it's also one of the most severe. Her statement is borne out in the current  soft cheese Listeria outbreak associated with Crave Brothers Les Freres cheese sold at Whole Foods, other large retail chains and restaurants in Illinois, Wisconsin and Minnesota. Another truism reflected in the outbreak is that pregnant women, newborns and older adults with weakened immune systems are most at risk for contracting listeriosis. According to the cheese recall and related food poisoning announcement by the CDC, one person from Minnesota has died, along with an unborn baby in another state. The pregnant mother and all other … [Read more...]

Walmart Sold Farm Rich Frozen Snacks Recalled for E. coli O121

Recalled Farm Rich Mozzarella Bites

The USDA has released the distribution list of the recalled Farm Rich frozen snacks that have been recalled for E. coli O121. The snacks are associated with an outbreak that has sickened at least 24 people in 15 states. WalMart sold the snacks nationwide in their stores. The recalled foods are heat treated, not fully cooked frozen mini meals and snack items. The Rich Products Corporation has recalled many of the items. You can see the complete list of recalled items at the USDA web site, along with pictures of the product labels. The FDA has also issued a recall for the Frank Rich products they monitor, which do not include meat or poultry. They include Farm Rich Mozzarella Bites in 22 ounce bags and 7 ounce cartons. You can see pictures of those product labels at the FDA web … [Read more...]

Farm Rich Products Recalled For Possible E. coli O121

Farm Rich Pizza Slices E. coli 0121

Rich Products Corporation of New York is recalling about 196,222 pounds of frozen chicken quesadillas and various other heat treated, not fully cooked frozen mini meals and snack items because they may be contaminated with E. coli O121. A multistate outbreak of E. coli O121 may be associated with these products, which were sold at Walmart. The New York State Department of Health Wadsworth Laboratory found the outbreak strain of the bacteria in a Farm Rich frozen chicken mini quesadilla product obtained from a case patient. These products are recalled: 7.2 ounce cartons of Farm Rich mini pizza slices with cheese pepperoni and sauce in pizza dough with UPC number 041322376909 and best by date of May 15 or May 16, 2014. Farm Rich mini pizza slices with cheese pepperoni and sauce in … [Read more...]

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