January 27, 2020

E. coli HUS Outbreak: Forty Sick, CDC Says Avoid All Romaine From Salinas, CA

The CDC just posted a food safety alert, telling consumers that in the wake of the newest E. coli HUS outbreak, they should avoid buying or eating all romaine lettuce from the Salinas, California growing region until more information is available. This is an echo of the same advice from the CDC last April, when another, deadly E. coli O157:H7 outbreak was linked to romaine. The advice in 2018 was to avoid all romaine lettuce until officials found the source. This newest outbreak is growing by leaps and bounds. Now 40 people in 16 states are sick. That's an increase of 23 more patients and 8 more states in just the last two days. Twenty-eight people have been hospitalized, which is a very high percentage of cases. Five people have developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), which is a … [Read more...]

FDA Weighs In On the Newest Romaine E. coli O157:H7 HUS Outbreak

The FDA has weighed in on the newest romaine E. coli O157:H7 outbreak that has sickened at least 17 people in 8 states. If Maryland Health Department information is added to that total, there are 22 people sick. But the CDC announcement said 17 are ill because only two of the seven Maryland cases have been definitely linked to the outbreak through whole genome sequencing (WGS). This outbreak took some time to unfold. A cluster of Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC)  illnesses was first identified in Wisconsin last week. Then, an E. coli outbreak in Maryland was identified. The CDC and FDA put it all together, announcing the multistate STEC HUS outbreak on November 20, 2019. The outbreak has been associated with Ready Pac Bistro® Chicken Caesar Salad sold at Sam's Club in … [Read more...]

Missa Bay Salads Recalled As Part of E. coli O157:H7 Outbreak Investigation

Missa Bay LLC, of Swedesboro, New Jersey, is recalling about 97,272 pounds of salad products made with meat or poultry because the lettuce ingredient used to make the salads may be contaminated with E. coli O157:H7. The notice does not state that no illnesses have been reported that are connected to these products. There is a multistate E. coli O157:H7 outbreak just announced yesterday by the CDC that is linked to some types of lettuce, including romaine. As part of an investigation into the Maryland section of the outbreak, the state collected and tested ingredients in a Ready Pac Bistro Caesar Salad with FSIS EST number 18502B on the label that was taken from the home of one of the patients sickened in this outbreak. The romaine lettuce tested positive for E. coli O157:H7. All … [Read more...]

CDC Investigating E. coli O157:H7 Romaine Outbreak Including MD and WI Illnesses

An E. coli O157:H7 romaine outbreak that includes illnesses reported by Maryland and Wisconsin has just been announced by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The Maryland outbreak was announced on November 18, 2019, and the Wisconsin outbreak was announced on November 16, 2019, although the first indication of the Wisconsin illnesses was posted on ProMED-mail. So far, the CDC says that 17 people are sick in 8 states. The case count by state is: Arizona (1), California (2), Colorado (1), Idaho (3), Maryland (2), Montana (1), Washington (1), and Wisconsin (6). The case count for Maryland posted by the CDC is different from the case count posted by the Maryland Department of Health, which is seven sick. So there may be as many as 22 people who are ill in this … [Read more...]

As Many as 20 Sick in Wisconsin E. coli Lettuce Outbreak

The Wisconsin Department of Health Services is investigating an E. coli O157:H7 outbreak in that state that may be linked to lettuce. There may be as many as 20 cases; three of the cases are children. The law firm of Pritzker Hageman has been retained by multiple patients in this outbreak and  is representing two of those children. One is a 4-year-old who is hospitalized and seriously ill, and the other child is 14 and also hospitalized. Dr. Larry Lutwick posted a notice on ProMed-Mail on November 17, 2019 about three women sickened with E. coli O157 infections who live in northwestern Wisconsin; those women told investigators that they ate salad before becoming sick. Since then, there are news reports that there may be people in other states, in particular Illinois, who may also … [Read more...]

MD E. coli O157:H7 Outbreak Linked to Ready Pac Chicken Caesar Salad

A MD E. coli O157:H7 outbreak may be linked to Ready Pac Bistro® Bowl Chicken Caesar Salad that was purchased from several Sam's Club locations in that state, according to the Maryland Health Department. Seven people are sick. One person has been hospitalized and no deaths have been reported. The health department is recommending the consumers not eat Ready Pac Bistro® Bowl Chicken Caesar Salad. The lot number on the product is 255406963, and the best by date is October 31, 2019. Officials tested unopened salad purchased by one of the patients, and found E. coli O157 in the romaine lettuce used in the salad. In addition to Sam's Club, these salad bowls are distributed to many other retailers. The notice did not name those retailers. The investigation is ongoing and more … [Read more...]

New Seasons Ground Beef E. coli O157 Recall Expands: One More Case

New Seasons Market has expanded its recall of fresh ground beef sold at its Portland, Oregon stores for possible E. coli O157:H7 contamination after new tests show that some of the potentially contaminated meat was available for sale as recently as November 8, 2019. In addition, one more illness case that is closely associated with one of the three confirmed cases has been identified. The first recall notice and notice of the outbreak was posted on November 10, 2019 and stated that the ground beef in question was sold from October 13 to October 23, 2019. At that time, three patients had been identified and their illnesses had been confirmed via lab tests. There is no word about any hospitalizations or hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) development. That means that four people may … [Read more...]

E. coli Outbreak Associated With New Seasons Market Ground Beef in Portland, OR

An E. coli O157:H7 outbreak in Portland, Oregon is associated with ground beef sold at meat counters in three New Seasons Market stores. Three people in the metro area are sick after eating New Seasons Market ground beef purchased at those outlets. All are recovering from their illness, according to a press release by the Oregon Health Authority. The company is also issuing a recall. The recalled fresh ground beef was sold at the company's North Lombard, North Interstate, and Cedar Hills store locations. The product comes in 5%, 10%, and 20% fat content varieties. The beef is ground at the stores before sale. The ground beef was purchased between October 19, 2019 and October 23, 2019. If you purchased these products, throw them away in a sealed container, even if you planned to cook … [Read more...]

FDA Released Info About Secret E. coli O157:H7 Romaine Outbreak

Last night, the FDA released information about a secret E. coli O157:H7 romaine lettuce outbreak that apparently sickened 23 people in 12 states. The outbreak is now over, according to a statement by the FDA. FDA Commissioner Frank Yiannas said in a statement, "Today, we are sharing news of a recent E. coli O157:H7 outbreak that was likely associated with romaine lettuce. We do not believe there is a current or ongoing risk to the public and we are not recommending the public avoid consuming romaine lettuce. "However, our investigation, along with previous outbreaks linked to romaine, reinforces the recommendations that we have made to the leafy green industry: producers must continue to review their practices and improve traceability to enhance food safety. We remain committed … [Read more...]

University of Arizona Scientists Examine Yuma Romaine E. coli Outbreak

University of Arizona (UA) scientists are examining the Yuma romaine E. coli O157:H7 HUS outbreak linked to lettuce from that Arizona growing area to look at growing practices and the environment. That outbreak was the sixth largest of 2018. In all, 210 people in 36 states were sickened, 96 people were hospitalized, and five people, who lived in Arkansas, California, Minnesota, and New York, died. Twenty-seven of those patients developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a type of kidney failure. This study is meant to provide recommendations to growers, packers, and distributors toward enhanced food safety. The FDA, the Arizona Department of Agriculture, and state partners conducted an environmental assessment in 2018 that narrowed the scope of the outbreak. The outbreak strain of … [Read more...]

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