October 16, 2017

Archives for February 2016

Oklahoma Among States Hit by Sweetwater Sprouts Salmonella Lawsuit

There are at least three people sick in Oklahoma with Salmonella Muenchen infections linked to raw sprouts produced by Sweetwater Farms. Five people total in this outbreak have bene hospitalized; no deaths have been reported. Sweetwater Farms, located in Inman, Kansas has been tested. Investigators found Salmonella in samples of irrigation water and in sprouts collected during an inspection at that facility. Testing is underway to determine the type and DNA fingerprint of Salmonella isolated from these samples. Alfalfa sprouts produced by Sweetwater Farms are not safe to eat because they may be contaminated with Salmonella bacteria. There has been a recall attached to this outbreak; all of the company's sprout products have been recalled from the market as of February 26, … [Read more...]

New York Hard Hit in Dole Listeriosis Outbreak

The state of New York has been hard hit in the Listeria monocytogenes outbreak linked to recalled Dole salad mixes. Four people in that state are sick. At least eighteen people in nine states have been infected with the outbreak strain of Listeria. Whole genome sequencing has been performed on samples from all of these people and the bacteria that sickened them are "highly related" genetically. All eighteen people sickened in this particular outbreak have been hospitalized. One person has died "as a result of listeriosis" according to the CDC. That person lived in Michigan. The most recent illness was diagnosed on January 31, 2016, so it the outbreak numbers may grow. The brand names of the salad mixes include Dole, Fresh Selections, Simple Truth, Marketside, The Little Salad Bar, … [Read more...]

E. coli Sproutbreak in MN and WI: What is It About Sprouts?

An E. coli O157:NM outbreak in Minnesota and Wisconsin had been linked to alfalfa sprouts made by Jack and the Green Sprouts in River Falls, Wisconsin. The outbreak has sickened at least nine people so far. Two of those sickened have been hospitalized. The sprouts have been recalled and hopefully there will be no new illnesses reported. But there will be more recalls and outbreaks involving sprouts in the future, because these products are inherently risky. Just browse through all of the stories of recalls and outbreaks we've written about in the past four years. What is it about sprouts that makes them so prone to contamination? The answer lies in how the seeds are sprouted and how they are grown in the first place. The seeds themselves can be contaminated, from feces from animals, … [Read more...]

Illness Outbreak at Michigan State University’s Kellogg Center

Officials from the Ingham County Health Department in Michigan are reporting that at least 120 people are sick after attending events at the Michigan State University's Kellogg Center in mid February. The number of those confirmed sick will probably increase as more people report their illnesses. The outbreak was initially centered on an event that took place at that venus on February 18, 2016, but has expanded to include all events in the Kellogg Center between Tuesday, February 16, 2016 and Sunday, February 21, 2016. If you were at the Kellogg Center during that time frame, for whatever reason, whether or not you got sick, please take an online survey to help officials with their investigation. You can find the survey online, or leave a message at 517-887-4312. Linda S. Vail, … [Read more...]

Jarred Pesto Linked to 2014 Botulism Outbreak

Jarred pesto isn't a common source of botulism but in 2014 it was the source of a botulism outbreak that sickened two people. The outbreak marked the only time pesto was documented as a source of a botulism outbreak in the U.S. and the first time in 15 years that it was the source of a botulism outbreak in other countries. The pesto had been purchased from a farm stand in San Clemente, California. Lab testing found botulinum toxin in leftovers of pasta with pesto. During an investigation of the company's facility, health officials found improper acidification and pressurization practices and that the company lacked the proper license to sell canned products. Botulism can cause life-threatening illness or death. Food that is contaminated with botulism may not smell or look spoiled. … [Read more...]

Paint Valley Farm Recalls Goat Milk in Ohio

Paint Valley Farms, of Beach City, Ohio is recalling whole goat milk products that were improperly pasteurized. The milk may contain pathogens because of the error, according to the Ohio Department of Agriculture. This recall includes approximately 115 gallons, sold in quart plastic bottles with the code date of March 13, 2016. No illnesses have been reoprted in connection with this recall. Anyone who drank the milk and became ill should see a doctor and mention possible exposure to foodborne bacteria. … [Read more...]

E. coli, Salmonella Spouts Join Long List of Outbreaks, Recalls

Current E. coli and Salmonella outbreaks are the latest additions to a long list of food safety problems linked to to sprouts. Public health officials consider sprouts a known risk, but as dozens of recalls and outbreaks show, the health risk associated with raw sprouts may not clear to consumers. Sprouts have been recalled an average of four times a year since 2012.  And since 2006, there have been more than 40 outbreaks linked to sprouts contaminated with Salmonella, E. coli and Listeria. Often, the source of the problem is traced to the seeds so washing the sprouts won't eliminate the source of bacteria. The bacteria can actually be inside the seeds, so treatments and washing them does not work. "Given the risks, sprout producers need to be more measured in touting the health … [Read more...]

Sprouts Recalled for E. coli Sold at Seward Co-op, Mississippi Market

Jack and the Green Sprout alfalfa and onion sprouts recalled for E. coli were sold at a variety of locations in Minnesota and Wisconsin including Seward Co-op and Mississippi Market locations. The recalled sprouts have been linked to an outbreak that has sickened seven people in Minnesota and two people in Wisconsin. Consumers who have purchased these products should not eat them as E. coli can cause serious illness. The recalled sprouts were packaged in plastic clamshell containers with a brightly colored round label on the top and were distributed throughout the Midwest to grocery stores, co-ops, restaurants, salad bars and commercial food service operations. "In this outbreak, the pathogen is E. coli O157:NM, a highly dangerous bacteria.  Given the risks, sprout producers need to … [Read more...]

Maytag Blue Cheese Listeria Recall Expands

Maytag Dairy Farms  of Newton Iowa is expanding its recall of “Maytag Blue” blue cheese wedges, wheels and crumbles for potential contamination with Listeria. The original recall was issued February 14, 2016. Consumers who have purchased these products should not eat them as Listeria can cause serious illness and death. At the time of the recall, no illnesses had been reported in connection with the recalled cheeses, however symptoms of a Listeria infection can take up to 70 days to develop. Among pregnant women, Listeria can cause miscarriage, stillbirth, premature delivery and infection of newborn. Symptoms of a Listeria infection include high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea. In addition to pregnant women, those most at risk are children, … [Read more...]

As Outbreaks Unfold CDC Advises: To Safely Eat Sprouts, Cook Them

As two ongoing multistate outbreaks linked to alfalfa sprouts unfold, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advises that the safest way to consume sprouts is to cook them.  Sprouts are a known source of food poisoning that have been the source of more than 40 outbreaks over the last 20 years, causing 2,405 illnesses, 171 hospitalizations, and three deaths federal health officials say. Currently there are two outbreaks linked to alfalfa sprouts. One is a Salmonella outbreak linked to sprouts produced by Sweetwater Farms in Kansas that sickened 13 people in Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri and Pennsylvania hospitalizing five of them. The other is an E.coli outbreak linked to sprouts produced by Jack and the Green Sprouts of River Falls, Wis. which has sickened nine people in … [Read more...]

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