May 9, 2021

Bagged Salad Cyclospora Outbreak is Number Two Outbreak of 2020

The bagged salad cyclospora outbreak that sickened at least 701 people in 14 states is the number two multistate food poisoning outbreak of 2020. Thirty-eight people were hospitalized because they were so sick. The bagged salad was produced by Fresh Express and contained carrots, red cabbage, and iceberg lettuce.

Bagged Salad Cyclospora Outbreak is Number Two Outbreak of 2020

The case count by state is: Georgia (1), Illinois (211), Iowa (206), Kansas (5), Massachusetts (1), Michigan (4), Minnesota (86), Missouri (57), Nebraska (55), North Dakota (6), Ohio (7), Pennsylvania (2), South Dakota (13), and Wisconsin (47). Illness onset dates ranged from May 11, 2020 through July 24, 2020. The patient age range is from 11 years to 92 years. Exposures were reported in these 13 states: Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, and Wisconsin.

Fresh Express recalled Fresh Express brand bagged salad and private label brand salad products that were produced at its Streamwood, Illinois facility on June 27, 2020. More than 90 different types of salads and brands are on the recall list. Some of the brand names include ShopRite, ALDI, HyVee, Jewel Osco, Walmart, and Giant Eagle.

In interviews, patients answered questions about what they ate the week before they got sick. Several illness clusters, defined as two or more people who do not live in the same household who said they ate at the same restaurant or shopped at the same grocery store, were identified.

The FDA and other officials in several states then collected records to discover the source of the bagged salad sold from those stores. Product distribution information indicated that the Streamwood, Illinois Fresh Express production facility is the likely producer of the bagged salad mixes these patients ate.

The symptoms of a cyclospora infection include gas, bloating, fatigue, weight loss, fever, loss of appetite, vomiting, and diarrhea that is explosive and frequent. These symptoms usually start 2 to 5 days after someone eats food contaminated with the cyclospora oocyst. If you have experienced these symptoms, especially if you ate a bagged salad mix, see your doctor. You may be part of this Fresh Express bagged salad cyclospora outbreak.

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