November 30, 2021

Chicken and Salmonella Infantis, the Neverending Outbreak?

When the CDC ended its investigation of a deadly Salmonella Infantis outbreak linked to raw chicken products in February 2019, it added an unusual note at the top of the posting. "This investigation is over. Illnesses could continue because this Salmonella strain appears to be widespread in the chicken industry," it read in part. Two and a half years later, the impact of that statement came into focus when an investigative report from ProPublica revealed that the outbreak, linked to a multidrug-resistant strain of Salmonella Infantis, has never ended. “Many people are still becoming ill, and some of them gravely ill,” Robert Tauxe told ProPublica. Tauxe, who is the director of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC’s) Division of Foodborne, Waterborne, and Environmental … [Read more...]

Can USDA Solve Chicken’s Salmonella Problem?

For the last 25 years, the USDA has been trying to reduce Salmonella illnesses by testing for the presence of the bacteria on poultry at processing plants. On the face of it, this seems like a solid plan. According to the CDC, Salmonella causes more foodborne illness than any other bacteria, about 1.35 million cases each year, and contaminated poultry accounts for about 23 percent of those illnesses. But something strange happened. Two decades of test results showed an overall reduction in the occurrence of Salmonella on poultry products, but the percentage of Salmonella illnesses linked to poultry didn’t decrease. In fact, it went up. And while the number of Salmonella illnesses linked to poultry increased, so did the severity thanks to the growing prevalence of dangerous, … [Read more...]

Did Citterio Facebook Giveaway Winners Get Salmonella Salami Sticks?

Did Citterio September Facebook giveaway winners receive salami sticks now linked to a multistate outbreak?  Here's why there may be a concern. Citterio USA of Freeland, PA announces a giveaway about once a month on Facebook. Salami sticks are one of the items in the photo for the September 7 post announcing last month's giveaway. The entry deadline was September 15, 2021, with winners announced the next day. Based on the comment section, it looks like prizes were mailed out at the end of the month. On September 30, one winner posted a photo of the box she'd won. It contains a variety of products including salami sticks, which Citterio calls salame sticks. See below. The problem is that a few weeks after the giveaway, Citterio Premium Italian-style Salame Sticks, which are … [Read more...]

Great Moon Buffet Salmonella Outbreak Sickens 17 in West St. Paul, MN

A Salmonella outbreak at Great Moon Buffet in West St. Paul, MN has sickened 17 people, according to the Minnesota Department of Health. Three people were hospitalized. The illnesses are associated with meals purchased at the restaurant from June 26 to June 28 and some July visits to the restaurant. A particular food item has not yet been identified, the investigation is ongoing. Thirteen of the illnesses are lab-confirmed cases of Salmonella Enteritidis. Four of the illnesses were reported from people who ate at the restaurant but weren't tested. After the illnesses were reported, health officials initiated interventions at Great Moon Buffet and the risk is no longer ongoing, according to the health department. Symptoms of a Salmonella infection include vomiting, fever, … [Read more...]

How Does Greenhouse-grown Lettuce Get Contaminated with Pathogens?

Since mid-July, there have been two recalls for salad greens grown in greenhouses, one of them in conjunction with a multistate Salmonella outbreak. These recalls have some consumers wondering how does greenhouse-grown lettuce get contaminated with pathogens? The first recall was linked to herbs and salad greens produced by BrightFarms of Rochelle, IL. On July 15, BrightFarms issued a recall for a variety of products packaged in clamshell containers and sold at grocery stores in five states. On July 22, health officials identified BrightFarms salad greens and herbs as the source of a Salmonella outbreak that has sickened 11 people in Illinois, Michigan, and Wisconsin.  In recent years, consumers have learned from a string of E. coli O157:H7 outbreaks that neighboring livestock farms can … [Read more...]

Organic Yogurt E. coli Outbreak Expands, Investigation Continues

An E. coli outbreak linked to organic yogurt sold under the brand names Pure Eire and PCC Market now includes 16 cases, a spokesperson told Food Poisoning Bulletin today. Most of the people sickened are children. Ten people have been hospitalized, and four have developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a form of kidney failure associated with E. coli infections. The organic yogurt E. coli outbreak includes 14 cases in Washington and two cases in Arizona. Both cases in Arizona are considered secondary infections, meaning the Arizona patients did not eat the yogurt but were in close contact with a visitor from Wahington who did. The grass-fed, organic yogurt associated with the outbreak is produced by Pure Eire Dairy of Othello, WA  and sold under the brand names Pure Eire and PCC … [Read more...]

Is Serenade Foods tied to Breaded Chicken Salmonella Outbreak?

Food safety investigators working with Salmonella lawyers at Pritzker Hageman have identified an establishment where breaded chicken products associated with an ongoing Salmonella outbreak were made.   People sickened in this outbreak reported eating chicken cordon bleu, chicken with broccoli and cheese, and chicken Kiev they had purchased frozen from grocery stores before they became ill. During an investigation of the outbreak, which includes 17 confirmed cases from six states, the Minnesota Department of Agriculture found the outbreak strain of Salmonella Enteritidis in Kirkwood Chicken Cordon Bleu. Kirkwood is an ALDI store brand but it may not be the only brand associated with this outbreak. Case patients reported eating products sold under a variety of brand names. … [Read more...]

Organic Yogurt E. coli Outbreak Now Includes Secondary Case in AZ

An organic yogurt E. coli outbreak that includes 11 confirmed cases in Washington now also includes a secondary food poisoning case in Arizona, a health department spokesperson told Food Poisoning Bulletin today. The patient, a 2-year-old girl, did not eat the yogurt but appears to have been exposed to the bacteria by a relative visiting from Washington. She did not require hospitalization. The E. coli O157:H7 outbreak has been linked to grass-fed, organic yogurt made by Pure Eire Dairy of Othello, WA. It was sold under the brand name PCC at PCC Community Markets and the brand name Pure Eire at Super 1 Foods, Andy’s Market and Blue Valley Meats in Walla Walla County and elsewhere. PCC and Pure Eire have both issued yogurt recalls. In addition to 8-oz and 16-oz containers of yogurt, … [Read more...]

After Deadly Listeria Outbreak, El Abuelito Stops Making Cheese

After a Listeria outbreak linked to El Abuelito queso fresco ended two pregnancies and left one person dead, the company is no longer making ready-to-eat cheese, a spokesperson from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) confirmed to Food Poisoning Bulletin today. El Abuelito first halted production and distribution of its cheese on February 19, 2021, after genetic tests showed the Listeria strain found in queso fresco made by El Abuelito and purchased by one of the people who became ill matched the strain cultured from outbreak patients. Before the outbreak, El Abuelito made queso fresco and other soft, fresh cheeses sold under the brand names El Abuelito, Rio Lindo, Rio Grande, Viejito, El Paisano, El Sabrosito, La Cima, Quesos Finos, San Carlos, and Ideal. These cheeses were … [Read more...]

Velvet Ice Cream’s Facebook Page: Recall? What Recall?

Ten days ago, Velvet Ice Cream of Utica, OH recalled all of the products it has made since March 24, 2021, but you'd never know by its Facebook page. There, it's business as usual with posts of products, historic photos, and an invitation to come and eat ice cream at Ye Olde Mill on opening weekend, which was May 1, four days after the recall was announced. Velvet may be selling scoops from a stockpile of ice cream made before March 24 that are stored inside its warehouse freezer. Completed in 2016, the $3 million, 23,000-square-foot expansion transformed a small freezer area into a warehouse distribution facility. The addition, which stores the ice cream at -20°F, can hold 3.2 million cartons of ice cream, enough to fill 18 tractor-trailers, according to information released when it … [Read more...]

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