May 20, 2019

Chia Powder Salmonella Outbreak in Canada Updated

The Public Health Agency of Canada has updated its investigation into the Salmonella outbreak in that country and in the United States linked to sprouted chia seed powder. Now, 34 people in Canada are sick, and 17 people in the U.S. are ill after eating contaminated products.

SalmonellaSeveral products have been recalled in the U.S. and in Canada because they may be contaminated with the pathogenic Salmonella bacteria. Anyone who bought these products should discard them, and should see a doctor immediately if they have symptoms of a Salmonella infection, which include diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, fever, chills, headache, and abdominal pain.

In Canada, two Salmonella strains are associated with this outbreak: Salmonella Newport and Salmonella Hartford. The case count is: British Columbia (6), Alberta (4), Ontario (22) and Quebec (2). Five people have been hospitalized; four people have been released and are recovering. At this time, 19 of the 19 people interviewed reported consumption of sprouted chia seeds or sprouted chia seed powder before they became ill, and 16 of 19 cases specifically reported consuming sprouted chia seed powder.

These products do have a long shelf life and may still be in people’s homes. If you have any of these products in your home, do not eat them. Discard in a sealed container or return to the place of purchase for a refund. And remember that food contaminated with Salmonella bacteria will not look, smell, or taste spoiled.



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