April 18, 2024

Cilantro May Be the Source in Mystery Multistate Salmonella Outbreak

Cilantro may be the source in the mystery multistate Salmonella Oranienburg outbreak, according to a dendrogram on the National Center for Biotechnology Information site, part of the National Institutes of Health. According to that information, cilantro has tested positive for Salmonella Oranienburg, the bacteria that has caused this outbreak.

Cilantro May Be the Source in Mystery Multistate Salmonella Outbreak

Cilantro has been linked to many food poisoning outbreaks in the past. It is a herb that is commonly used in Tex-Mex cooking. And 43% of the cases in this outbreak are in Texas and Oklahoma.

In 2015, cilantro was linked to a huge cyclospora outbreak that sickened at least 218 people in Texas and Wisconsin. And in 2014, another cyclospora outbreak was linked to fresh cilantro. The same thing happened in 2013.

Going further back, in 2008, a Salmonella Saintpaul outbreak linked to multiple raw produce items, including cilantro, sickened at least 1,442 people in 43 states and the District of Columbia. And in 1999, an outbreak of Salmonella Thompson sickened 41 people in restaurant-associated clusters along with 35 sporadic cases. That outbreak had a significant association between illnesses and eating cilantro at a restaurant.


In the current Salmonella Orianienberg outbreak, at least 279 people in 29 states are sick. The states that have the most cases are Texas (81), Oklahoma (40), Illinois (28), Virginia (22), and Minnesota (19). The association with restaurants is significant given that cilantro may be the culprit in this case and restaurant settings have been involved in cilantro outbreaks in the past.

Symptoms of Salmonella food poisoning include a fever, nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, abdominal cramps, and diarrhea that can be bloody. If you have eaten fresh cilantro, either purchased at a grocery store or in a restaurant, and have been ill with these symptoms, see your doctor and ask for a Salmonella test. You may be part of this Salmonella Oranienburg outbreak. And cilantro may be the source.

Pritzker Hageman Food Safety Lawyers

If you or a loved one have been sickened with a Salmonella Oranienburg infection after eating cilantro at a restaurant or at home, please contact our experienced attorneys for help at 1-888-377-8900 or 612-338-0202.

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