January 17, 2020

FDA Weighs in on Fresh Express Sunflower Crisp E. coli Outbreak

The FDA is weighing in on the Fresh Express Sunflower Crisp E. coli O157:H7 outbreak that sickened 10 people in 5 states. Four people were hospitalized and one patient developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a type of kidney failure. This salad mix also made 25 people sick in Canada, where the Fresh Express product was recalled. There was no recall issued in the U.S. The contaminated Fresh Express Sunflower Crisp Chopped salad kits that made people sick are "likely no longer available on the market," according to the FDA statement. The outbreak has ended as of January 15, 2020 after sickening 1 person in Georgia, Illinois, and North Dakota; three in Wisconsin; and four in Minnesota. Once again, the FDA states that this outbreak, the outbreak associated with Evergreen … [Read more...]

FDA Yiannas Statement on Salinas Romaine Lettuce E. coli Outbreaks

FDA Deputy Commissioner for Food Policy and Response Frank Yiannas has posted a statement on the Salinas romaine lettuce E. coli O157:H7 outbreak and investigation. There are three separate outranks the FDA is tracking, caused by three different strains of E. coli O157:H7. They are: the large multistate outbreak linked to that lettuce, a small outbreak linked to Fresh Express Sunflower Crisp Chopped Salad Kit in the upper Midwest, and an outbreak associated with Evergreen restaurants in Seattle. There is a common grower between each of these outbreaks, and that grower is located in Salinas, California. However, romaine from this grower doesn't explain all of the illnesses in these outbreaks. The last reported illness for all of the outbreaks was December 21, 2019. Yiannas says … [Read more...]

Fresh Express Sunflower Crisp E. coli O157:H7 Outbreak Ends With 10 Sick

The Fresh Express Sunflower Crisp E. coli O157:H7 outbreak is over, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), after sickening 10 people in 5 states and hospitalizing 4. One patient developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). That is an increase of two more patients in two more states from the latest outbreak update that was released on December 9, 2019. The two new patients live in Georgia and Illinois. The case count by state is: Georgia (1), Illinois (1), Minnesotas (4), North Dakota (1), and Wisconsin (3). Illness onset dates ranged from November 5, 2019 to November 16, 2019. The patient age range is from 21 to 92. Four of 10 patients were hospitalized, and one person developed HUS. No deaths were reported. The contaminated Fresh Express Sunflower Crisp … [Read more...]

Salinas Romaine E. coli O157:H7 Outbreak Over After Sickening 167

The Salinas romaine E. coli O157:H7 outbreak is declared over by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), after sickening 167 people in 27 states. That is an increase of 29 more patients and two more states since the last outbreak update on December 19, 2019. Eighty-five people were hospitalized, 15 people developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a type of kidney failure, and there were no deaths. The CDC is no longer telling people to avoid romaine lettuce from the Salinas Valley growing region in California, but the growing season is over in that area until later this year. Once again, no specific grower or producer was named in this outbreak, although several recalls of products were issued. The case count by state is: Arizona (4), California (8), Colorado (6), … [Read more...]

Minnesota State Fair Lawsuit Filed For a Child Sickened with E. coli O157:H7

The lawyers at Pritzker Hageman have filed a lawsuit on behalf of a 4-year-old boy who was sickened with an E. coli O157:H7 infection he contracted at the Minnesota State Fair last summer. The boy suffered permanent kidney damage as a complication of this infection. The outbreak at the fair sickened 11 people ; it was announced in mid-September 2019. Contact with livestock was a key factor in this outbreak according to public health officials, and in fact many patients said they visited the Miracle of Birth exhibit and had direct contact with goats, sheep, piglets, and calves. Ruminant animals such as goats, sheep, and cows can carry E. coli O157:H7 bacteria in their intestines. The pathogen is shed in their feces, and can contaminate bedding, floors, fences, and gates in the … [Read more...]

Yosemite National Park Stomach Illness Outbreak Sickens Visitors

Federal health officials say a Yosemite National Park stomach illness outbreak has sickened at least a dozen people, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. An investigation has been launched after the reports of illness began, and inspections are being conducted at the service facilities. The illness or origin of the outbreak have not been identified. Those sickened are recovering or have already recovered. There is no information about this outbreak on Yosemite's web site. The concession provider is Aramark. They operate Yosemite's hotels, snack shops, and restaurants. Officials say they are cleaning and disinfecting their venues in the Park, which include the Ahwahnee Hotel. According to NBC News, complaints about Aramark's service have been "numerous," ranging from for food … [Read more...]

Timeline of Three Romaine E. coli O157:H7 Outbreaks

This timeline of three romaine E. coli O157:H7 outbreaks is intended to reduce confusion about the illnesses and the products and restaurants they are linked to or potentially linked to. The three outbreaks are a large multistate outbreak linked to romaine lettuce grown in Salinas, California; an outbreak linked to Fresh Express Sunflower Crisp Chopped Salad Kit that has sickened people in the upper Midwest; and an E. coli outbreak associated with seven Evergreen restaurants in the Seattle, Washington area. Only the outbreak associated with Evergreen restaurants has been declared over. All three of these outbreaks have been named by the FDA as having a common grower, even though the strains of E. coli are different. The FDA notice states, "Currently, the tracebacks on all three … [Read more...]

Seven Seattle Evergreen Restaurants Associated with E. coli Outbreak

There are now seven Seattle Evergreen Restaurants associated with an E. coli O157:H7 outbreak that has sickened 15 people, an increase of two more patients since the last update posted in December 2019. The outbreak appears to be over, according to the Seattle King County Health Department, but the investigation is ongoing. Three people were hospitalized because they were so sick. The seven Seattle Evergreen restaurants named by the health department include Evergreen locations at: Pioneer Square (106 1st Avenue S, Seattle) University District (4609 Village Ter NE, Seattle) Downtown (823 3rd Avenue, Seattle) Chinatown-International District (504 5th Ave South, Seattle) Sammamish Highlands (600 228th Avenue NE, Sammamish) Seattle-Tacoma International Airport … [Read more...]

What Food Poisoning Outbreaks Are Carrying Over From 2019?

As we enter 2020, there are four multistate food poisoning outbreaks that have not ended, and may still grow. There were many outbreaks in 2019, sickening thousands of people, hospitalizing hundreds, and even killing some. These food poisoning outbreaks that were first announced in 2019 and are still not over include: A deadly Listeria monocytogenes outbreak linked to Almark Foods hard cooked eggs. was first announced on December 19, 2019. This outbreak has triggered seven secondary recalls for products that were made with those eggs. Seven people are five states are sick. Four of those patients have been hospitalized, and one person who lived in Texas died. Almark Foods has now recalled all hard cooked eggs produced at its facility in Gainesville, Georgia for potential … [Read more...]

What Are the Symptoms of Common Foodborne Pathogens?

Since 48,000,000 Americans are sickened with food poisoning every year, which hospitalizes 128,000 and kills about 3,000, consumers should know the symptoms of these illnesses so they can get prompt treatment. There are 31 different pathogens that are known to cause foodborne illness, but the three most common are Salmonella, Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC), and Listeria monocytogenes. What are the symptoms of common foodborne pathogens? Salmonella Symptoms Symptoms of a Salmonella food poisoning illness include a mild fever, a headache, abdominal cramps, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea that may be bloody. Symptoms usually start 12 to 72 hours after ingestion of the pathogen. Most people do recover on their own without medical treatment, which is why food safety experts use … [Read more...]

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