December 14, 2019

FDA Updates Romaine E. coli O157:H7 HUS Outbreaks

The FDA updates romaine E. coli O157:H7 outbreaks in a notice sent on December 12, 2019. This update is interesting because, although case counts in the large outbreak have not changed, the notice states that the two other ongoing E. coli O157:H7 outbreaks are linked to the large outbreak in a special way: "tracebacks on all three outbreaks have identified a common grower in Salinas." Those outbreaks are in the upper Midwest, sickening nine people in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and North Dakota; and an outbreak in the Seattle, Washington area that is linked to Evergreen restaurants. One interesting tidbit: these two outbreaks are caused by E. coli strains that are different from each other and different from the larger outbreak. The case count is still 102 people sick in 23 states. … [Read more...]

Fresh Express Sunflower Crisp Salad E. coli Outbreak in Canada Updated

The Fresh Express Sunflower Crisp salad E. coli O157:H7 outbreak in Canada has been updated by Public Health Canada. Now, 24 people are sick with E. coli infections in six provinces. An E. coli O157:H7 outbreak in the U.S., which has sickened 9 people in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and North Dakota is linked to the same product. This outbreak appears to be ongoing. The Fresh Express product has been recalled in Canada, but not in the United States. The genetic fingerprint of the pathogen that is making people sick is similar in both countries, indicating a common source of infection. Based on the investigation to date, exposure to Fresh Express Sunflower Crisp Chopped Salad kits has been identified as a likely source of this outbreak. Many of those sickened told investigators they ate … [Read more...]

FDA Has Identified a Common Grower in Three Ongoing E. coli Outbreaks

The FDA has identified a common grower in the three ongoing E. coli O157:H7 outbreaks that are linked to or associated with romaine lettuce. A statement from FDA commissioner Frank Yiannas issued last night updated the public on the investigation into these outbreaks. While a common grower, not named at this time, has been identified, the outbreaks are "currently being considered as three separate outbreaks caused by three different strains of E. coli O157:H7," according to the statement. These outbreaks were all identified at different times in November 2019 and early December 2019. While the FDA has identified a common grower in these outbreaks, Yiannas states "Because of the expansive nature of these outbreaks, our investigation remains a complicated work in progress, and it is … [Read more...]

Lincoln Correctional Center Salmonella Outbreak Sickens 6 in Nebraska

A Lincoln Correctional Center Salmonella outbreak in Nebraska has sickened at least six inmates, according to a press release by the Nebraska Department of Correctional Services. Food poisoning outbreaks at prisons and jails are fairly common because of close quarters and serving large quantities of food. However, none of the inmates incarcerated during the Lincoln Correctional Center Salmonella outbreak were tested when they got sick. All are recovering from their symptoms. Most of the patients were from one particular housing unit at the LCC. Dr. Harbans Deol, medical director at the Nebraska Department of Correctional Services (NDCS) said that it is likely that all of the patients consumed something that caused their illnesses. "Salmonella is one of those medical conditions … [Read more...]

FDA Info on Fresh Thyme Woodman’s Blackberries Hepatitis A Outbreak

The FDA has released information on the Fresh Thyme Woodman's blackberries hepatitis A outbreak that has sickened 18 people in 6 states, including Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, and Wisconsin. The outbreak is potentially linked to fresh, conventional (non-organic) blackberries sold at the grocery stores Fresh Thyme Farmers Market and Woodman's Market in the upper midwest.   The case counts were updated to include 18 illnesses  from 16 from the last update on December 3, 2019 , with the most recent illness onset date on November 15, 2019. Ten people have been hospitalized. The FDA is urging consumers not to eat any fresh, conventional blackberries if they were purchased from 9/9/19 and 9/30/19 from Fresh Thyme Farmers Market stores located in Iowa, … [Read more...]

Minnesota Resident Sickened in Possible Tailor Cut Produce Salmonella Outbreak

A Minnesota resident sickened in a possible Tailor Cut Produce Salmonella Javiana outbreak joins at least 10 other ill people who live in Pennsylvania, according to an outbreak update from the FDA. The person from Minnesota apparently got sick in New York, one of the states that received the recalled Tailor Cut Produce along with facilities in Delaware, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. Epidemiologic and traceback evidence indicates that the fruit mix from Tailor Cut Product of North Brunswick, New Jersey is a potential source of this outbreak. The FDA has started an inspection at the Tailor Cut Produce facility and is collecting records to start a traceback investigation. The Tailor Cut fruit mix, called Fruit Luau, was distributed to nursing homes, schools, hospitals, and other … [Read more...]

Fresh Thyme Blackberries Hepatitis A Outbreak Grows to 18 Sick

The Fresh Thyme blackberries hepatitis A outbreak has grown again to include 18 sick in 6 states, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). These cases are potentially linked to conventionally grown blackberries sold at Fresh Thyme Farmers Market stores and Woodman's Market stores in several states from September 9, 2019 through September 30, 2019. The case count by state is: Indiana (3), Michigan (1), Minnesota (1), Missouri (1), Nebraska (7), and Wisconsin (5). Illness onset dates range from October 8, 2019 to November 15, 2019. The patient age range is from 14 to 73 years. Ten people, or 59% of those interviewed, have been hospitalized, which is a very high percentage for a hepatitis A outbreak. This outbreak could still grow, since hepatitis A … [Read more...]

Wisconsin Officials Found E. coli in Fresh Express Chopped Romaine

Wisconsin officials found E. coli in Fresh Express romaine salad from Salinas, California, according to the Wisconsin Department of Heath Services. This outbreak is the large one that is linked to romaine harvested in Salinas, California, with at least 102 people sick and 58 hospitalized. More laboratory testing is pending to see if the bacteria found in the romaine matches the strain that has caused the illnesses in the outbreak. Another Fresh Express product, Fresh Express Sunflower Crisp Salad Kit, is linked to second E. coli outbreak that has sickened nine people in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and North Dakota. According to the CDC, whole genome sequencing conducted on isolates from people in that outbreak does not match the isolates taken from patients in the larger outbreak. And … [Read more...]

Fresh Express Sickens Five Minnesotans with E. coli O157:H7 Infections

Fresh Express sickens five Minnesotans with E. coli O157:H7 infections, according to the Minnesota Department of Health. (MDH). Yesterday, the FDA's press release stated that there were four people sick in that state. Doug Schultz, Information Officer for MDH told Food Poisoning Bulletin that there are no hemolytic uremic syndrome cases in the state, but that two of the five patients have been hospitalized. One patient has been released from the hospital. The illness onset dates for these patients range from November 8 to November 16, 2018. The patient age range is from 21 to 91. Four of the patients live in the Minneapolis-St. Paul metro area, and one lives in Greater Minnesota. Three people are sick in Wisconsin, and one person living in North Dakota is ill. The product linked … [Read more...]

Fresh Express E. coli O157:H7 HUS Outbreak Investigated by FDA

The new Fresh Express E. coli O157:H7 HUS outbreak that has sickened eight people in the Upper Midwest is being investigated by the FDA. The outbreak is linked to Fresh express Sunflower Crisp Chopped Salad Kits both in the United States and in Canada. The case count by state is Minnesota (4), North Dakota (1), and Wisconsin (3). Illness onset dates range from November 5, 2019 to November 15, 2019. Three people have been hospitalized because their illness is so severe. One person has developed hemolytic ureic syndrome (HUS), which is a type of kidney failure that can develop after an E. coli infection. The outbreak strain of E. coli O157:H7 bacteria that is found in these case patients is different from the outbreak strain of the large E. coli O157:H7 outbreak linked to romaine … [Read more...]

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