July 16, 2018

Tyson Salmonella Outbreak Ends, Nine Sick in TN

A Salmonella outbreak linked to Tyson mechanically separated chicken sickened nine inmates at the Bradley County Jail in TN and did not include cases in other states, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has determined. Health officials looked at 23 cases of Salmonella Heidelberg infections in 15 other states that took place during the same time period as the illnesses at the jail and concluded that they were not part of the outbreak. A food source for the cases that were ruled out was not determined.

SalmonellaMechanically separated chicken is made by forcing chicken bones and attached edible tissue through a sieve or similar device to separate meat from bone. It has a looser consistency than ground chicken, more like a paste or batter. The product is normally used as an ingredient in hot dogs, bologna, luncheon meats or other products that are sold fully cooked. But the Bradley County Jail and other institutions, received the product directly from Tyson in cases containing four, 10-pound tubes called chubs. It’s not clear how the product was served. Tyson recalled 34,000 pounds of the product, which was not sold retail, in January.

Lab tests on samples from two of the case patients found that the Salmonella outbreak strain showed resistance to ceftriaxone, an antibiotic commonly used to treat serious Salmonella infections, and other antibiotic combinations.

The product was served to the inmates the week of Thanksgiving 2013 and they began to show signs of illness on November 28, 2013. All of those sickened were males ranging in age from 22 years to 50 years old. The median age was 36. Two people were hospitalized.

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