August 9, 2022

Salmonella Outbreak Linked to Corn in Canada Sickens 110

A Salmonella outbreak linked to corn in Canada has sickened at least 110 people in five provinces, according to Public Health Canada. The corn is frozen. The product linked this outbreak is Alasko IQF (individually quick frozen) whole kernel corn. A secondary recall was issued for Fraser Valley Meats Whole Kernel Corn. This is an ongoing outbreak.

Salmonella Outbreak Linked to Corn in Canada Sickens 110

The patient case count by province is: British Columbia (42), Alberta (49), Saskatchewan (4), Manitoba (13) and Ontario (2). The patients who live in Ontario traveled to Alberta and British Columbia before they got sick. Illness onset dates range from early September 2021 to late December 2021. Four people have been hospitalized because they are so ill. The patient age range is between one and 89.

Investigators had originally focused on avocados as the potential source of this outbreak, but after interviews with patients and conducting traceback, corn was identified as the source. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency collected food items from restaurants where ill persons ate. Testing found the outbreak strain of Salmonella in an unopened package of Alasko frozen whole kernel corn. And traceback identified Alasko as the common brand of frozen corn eaten by patients at various food establishments.

This outbreak is a reminder that frozen vegetables can be contaminated with pathogens that can make you sick. It is important to cook frozen vegetables to 160°F before serving.

Symptoms of Salmonella food poisoning can take 6 hours to six days to develop. Most people experience a variety of symptoms, including a fever, headache, chills, nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, stomach pain, and diarrhea that may be bloody. And this infection, even if mild, can have long term health complications including high blood pressure and endocarditis. If you have eaten Alasko frozen corn and have been ill with these symptoms, see your doctor. You may be part of this Salmonella outbreak linked to corn.

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