November 12, 2020

Canadian Salmonella Red Onion Outbreak Has Sickened 339 in 7 Provinces

The Canadian Salmonella red onion outbreak has now sickened ant least 339 people in seven provinces, according to the Public Health Agency of Canada. That is and increase of 100 more illnesses since the last update on August 7, 2020. Forty-eight people have been hospitalized. This outbreak is linked to red onions that are imported from the United States, where there is a similar outbreak that has sickened at least 640 people in 43 states.

Canadian Salmonella Red Onion Outbreak Has Sickened 339 in 7 Provinces

The case count by province is: British Columbia (78), Alberta (208), Saskatchewan (19), Manitoba (19), Ontario (8), Quebec (6), and Prince Edward Island (1). The patient age range is from 3 and 100 years of page. Illness onset dates range from mid-lune and late July 2020.

No onions grown in Canada are associated with this outbreak. Onions imported from the U.S. are under investigation. Do not eat, use, sell, or serve any red, white, yellow, or sweet yellow onions from Thomson International of Bakersfield California, or any product made with those onions. If you aren’t sure whether or not a food item made with those onions falls into this category, or if any onions you haw purchased are from Thomson International, don’t eat it.

Food recall warnings have been issued for related products that have been imported into Canada. Some of these products may have been distributed nationally. Recalled brand names of onions and foods made with them include El Competitor, Fresh is Best, Imperial Fresh, Onions 52, and Skeena Select, among others. In addition to whole onions, salads and sandwiches have been recalled. Please look at the list of recalled products to see if you have purchased any; if so, throw them out.

In the United States, the CDC is investigating and outbreak of Salmonella Newport illnesses with a similar genetic fingerprint to illnesses reported in Canada. That means those sickened are likely to share a common source.

More illnesses may be reported, since there is a lag time between when a person gets sick, sees a doctor, is tested, and those test results are reported to the government. That time is between two and four weeks for this outbreak.

While anyone can get sick from a Salmonella infection, the groups that are more likely to become seriously ill are the young, older adults, pregnant women, people with compromised immune systems, and those with chronic illnesses, such as diabetes. Symptoms of Salmonella food poisoning include a fever, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, stomach cramps, and diarrhea that may be bloody.

If you have been experiencing these symptoms, especially if you have eaten onions, see your doctor. You may be part of this Canadian Salmonella red onion outbreak.

 

 

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