December 9, 2022

New Listeria Outbreak Linked to Enoki Mushrooms Sickens Two

A new Listeria outbreak linked to enoki mushrooms has been announced by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). At least two people in two states are sick. The case count by state is: Michigan (1) and Nevada (1). The patient age range is from 30 to 42. Illness onset dates range from October 5, 2022 to October 8, 2022. Both patients have been hospitalized. And both reported eating enoki mushrooms or eating at restaurants that served items containing enoki mushrooms before they got sick. Whole genome sequencing conducted on patient isolates showed that they likely both got sick from eating the same product, since they are closely related genetically. And in November 2021, the FDA found Listeria monocytogenes in one sample of enoki mushrooms that were collected at … [Read more...]

FDA Adds Salmonella Outbreak; USDA Adds E. coli Outbreak

FDA adds Salmonella outbreak to its CORE Outbreak Investigation Table, while the USDA adds an E. coli O157:H7 outbreak to theirs, which may be associated with beef. Very little information has been provided for these new outbreaks. For the new outbreak of Salmonella Typhimurium on the FDA site, the food has not yet been identified. There are currently 264 cases, which is a very high case count for an unidentified outbreak. The FDA is working with partners to investigate "multiple food items of interest" to try to determine the cause of this outbreak. Traceback has been initiated. The new E. coli O157:H7 outbreak on the USDA table is suspected to be linked to beef. There is no information about patient case counts, patient ages, states where ill persons live, or what type of beef … [Read more...]

History of Deli Meat and Cheese Listeria Outbreaks

Once again, a new Listeria monocytogenes outbreak linked to deli meats and cheeses has been reported by the CDC. These outbreaks have happened regularly since 2018, and cause serious illness and hospitalizations. The history of deli meat and cheese listeria outbreaks is deadly. These products are susceptible to Listeria contamination for several reasons. First, this pathogen is very persistent and it can protect itself against regular cleaning products by producing a biofilm. Once it has been introduced into a deli environment it is very difficult to eradicate. The bacteria can hide in cracks and in machines that are difficult to clean, such as deli meat slicers. And since many establishments may not clean their slicers often enough or thoroughly enough, cross-contamination … [Read more...]

New Listeria Monocytogenes Outbreak Added to FDA CORE Table

A new Listeria monocytogenes outbreak has been added to the FDA's CORE Outbreak Investigation Table. This investigation joins four other active outbreak investigations on that Table. In the new outbreak, which is not the same as the new Listeria outbreak linked to deli meats and cheeses in the upper northeastern part of the United Sates, at least two people are sick. A possible source of the pathogen has not been identified. Traceback has been initiated, but no recall has been issued, there has been no on-site inspection, and no sample collection or analysis. We do not know the patient age range, illness onset dates, or whether or not anyone has been hospitalized. There is one other mystery outbreak on the Table: an E. coli O157:H7 outbreak in a not yet identified food that has … [Read more...]

Oklahoma Campylobacter and E. coli Outbreak Sickens Residents

An Oklahoma Campylobacter and E. coli outbreak has sickened residents in several cities, according to the Oklahoma State Department of Health (ODSH). This outbreak was originally identified on October 25, 2022 in Hydro county, especially the city of Weatherford, but OSDH and local county health departments have been working with other partners to conduct tests and found more patients. No possible cause of these illnesses has been named. Public health officials are asking residents of Custer county and Hydro, Hinton, and Lookeba residents to fill out a survey, which is being shared through the local Emergency Alert System. They hope that this information will help find more patients who may not have been to a doctor, as well as get information about difference in activities between … [Read more...]

Most Deli Meat and Cheese Listeria Cases Are in New York State

In the latest outbreak, most of the deli meat and cheese Listeria cases are in New York, according to the FDA and CDC. Seven of the 16 cases live in that state. In fact, among seven patients from New York who were interviewed, five said they bought sliced deli meat or cheese from at least one location of NetCost Market. In 2021, the outbreak strain of Listeria monocytogenes was found in several environmental and food samples during inspections at NetCost Markets in Brooklyn and Staten Island. Then, in September 2022, the outbreak strain was found in the same Brooklyn NetCost Market. That store is not linked to the most recent illnesses, however. That suggests that this may be an ongoing issue, especially since illness onset dates extend back to April 2021. But investigators do … [Read more...]

Three Sick in E. coli O157:H7 Outbreak in King County, Washington

Three people are sick in an E. coli O157:H7 outbreak in King County, Washington, according to information from the King County Health Department. No one has been hospitalized and no deaths have been reported. And no source for the pathogen has been identified. Three people from three separate households have been sickened with Shiga toxin-producing E. coli bacteria (STEC). The illness onset dates range from October 4 through October 16, 2022. The patient age range is from 18 to 36 years. Confirmed cases are linked through whole genome sequencing, which means they likely have a common source of infection. Two out of those three patients reported eating dishes that were prepared with raw or undercooked beef before they got sick. But officials cannot rule out other possible sources … [Read more...]

New Deli Meat and Cheese Listeria Outbreak Sickens 16

A new deli meat and cheese Listeria outbreak has sickened at least 16 people, hospitalized 13, and killed one person, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Those patients live in six states. The case count by state is: California (1), Illinois (2), Maryland (3), Massachusetts (2), New Jersey (1), and New Y0rk (7). Illness onset dates range from April 17, 2021 to September 29, 2022. The patient age range is from 38 to 92 years. Eleven of the patients are of Eastern European background or speak Russian. Of 14 people who gave information about their illnesses to public health investigators, 13 have been hospitalized. One person got sick during their pregnancy, resulting in a fetal loss. And one death from Maryland has been reported. Officials are … [Read more...]

Will There Be More Romaine Lettuce E. coli Outbreaks This Year?

This is the time of year that we typically start seeing E. coli outbreaks linked to romaine lettuce, as the harvest patters shift. Will there be more romaine lettuce E. coli outbreaks this year? Studies have shown that fall harvested romaine is more likely to case E. coli outbreaks. ┬áThe problem may be that the pathogen survives better on cold stored packaged romaine lettuce. In November, harvest shifts to the Yuma, Arizona region and the area of California near the Imperial Valley. And the issue with this type of lettuce is its shape and the way it's grown. The lettuce is grown very close to the ground. And the cup shape holds water, which lets any pathogens in that water have easy access to the leaves. The bacteria can get inside the leaves, and it can also burrow into the … [Read more...]

Deadly Big Olaf Ice Cream Listeria Outbreak Ends with 28 Sick

The deadly Big Olaf ice cream Listeria monocytogenes outbreak has ended with 28 people sick in 13 states, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). That is an increase of three more cases since the last update on August 4, 2022. The new patients live in Florida, Massachusetts, Minnesota, and New York. The new states are Minnesota and Massachusetts. The case count by state is: Colorado (1), Florida (14), Georgia (1), Illinois (1), Kansas (1), Massachusetts (2), Minnesota (1), Nebraska (1), Massachusetts (2), Minnesota (1), New Jersey (1), New York (4), and Pennsylvania (1). The patient age range is from less than one to 92 years. Illness onset dates range from January 24, 2021 to August 19, 2022. Of 28 ill persons, 27 were hospitalized. One person from … [Read more...]

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