January 22, 2020

Northfork Bison Recalls Bison and Buffalo Burgers in Wake of E. coli Outbreak

Northfork Bison Distributors of St. Leonard, Quebec, Canada, is recalling its Bison Burgers (Buffalo Burgers) and Ground Bison (called Bison Ground) for possible E. coli O121 and O103 contamination. There is an outbreak associated with these recalled products. At least 21 people in 7 states are ill with these infections. The Bison Burgers (Buffalo Burgers) and Ground Bison were distributed across the eastern and central U.S. to institutions and retail outlets. All institutions that have Bison Burgers and Bison Ground in their inventory with the production dates of February 22, 2019 through April 30, 2019, should not serve it to customers, but return it to the distributors. For consumers, the recalled products are Buffalo Burgers (4 x 4 ounce) with expiration dates up to October … [Read more...]

ADM Milling E. coli O26 Flour Outbreak Ends With 21 Sick

The E. coli O26 flour outbreak that was linked to recalled Aldi Baker's Corner, Pillsbury bread, and King Arthur flour has ended with 21 people in 9 states sick, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Three people were hospitalized. There were no deaths. The case count by state is: California (1), Connecticut (1), Massachusetts (2), Missouri (1), New Jersey (1), New York (7), Ohio (5), Pennsylvania (2), and Rhode Island (1). Illness onset dates ranged from 7 to 86 years. Of 20 people who provided information to investigators, 3 were hospitalized. There were four recalls issued in relation to this outbreak, although no illnesses were linked to some of the products. They were recalled because they were made of the same lot of wheat used at ADM Milling to … [Read more...]

San Diego County Fair E. coli Outbreak Has Now Sickened 10

The E. coli outbreak at the San Diego County Fair has now sickened 10 people, according to the San Diego Health & Human Services Agency. There is one more probable case that has not yet been confirmed. Three people have been hospitalized, and one 2-year-old child has died. Officials have still not found the source of the pathogen. All of the children who are sick visited the animal areas, petting zoo, or had other animal contact at the fair. County Environmental health re-inspected food facilities that were visited by the children and found no link to the cases. Unfortunately, E. coli outbreaks linked to animal attractions at fairs, petting zoos, and farm tourist attractions are nothing new. Almost every year children are sickened after visiting these venues. Earlier this … [Read more...]

At Least 140 Sick With Possible E. coli Infections After Visiting Lake Minnetonka

At least 140 people are now sick with possible E. coli infections after boating in Lake Minnetonka in the western suburbs of Minneapolis over the Fourth of July weekend. Hennepin County Public Heath is reporting this increase in the case count. Of the 140 people who have called to say they are sick, 116 were near Big Island. That island has a nature park and several campsites.  Hennepin County closed the Excelsior Beach on July 9, 2019 after finding E. coli there. Excelsior is a city on Lake Minnetonka. Patients are experiencing symptoms which include vomiting and multiple episodes of diarrhea. Typical symptoms of an E. coli infection include severe and painful abdominal cramps along with diarrhea that is usually bloody and/or watery. If a fever is present, it is mild. Vomiting … [Read more...]

E. coli Outbreak at Lake Minnetonka in Minnesota Sickens 30

A rather strange E. coli outbreak has sickened 30 people who visited Lake Minnetonka in Minnesota over the Fourth of July weekend. According to news reports, people have contacted the Hennepin County Public Health after they were on the lake, especially in the Big Island area. Those 30 cases have been confirmed by the department. Public Health Epidemiology Manager Dave Johnson told MPR, "I would say that the symptoms are consistent with a water or food exposure and so we've been interviewing the ill persons to evaluate all potential exposures. So we're asking them about, were they in the water, were they swimming, did they potentially accidentally ingest some water. Public health officials do not know exactly how many cases of illness are connected to exposure to Lake Minnetonka. … [Read more...]

Two More Probable E. coli Cases Linked to San Diego County Fair

Two more probable E. coli cases have been linked to the San Diego County Fair, bringing the total of sick children to seven, according to the County of San Diego Health and Human Services. Those seven cases include four confirmed and three probable. A two-year-old boy sadly died on June 24, 2019 after visiting the fair. All of the children had visited animal exhibits at the fair before they got sick. The two new cases are a 2-year-old who was at the fair on June 22, 2019, got sick on June 26, and was not hospitalized, and a 4-year-old who visited the fair on June 21, got sick on June 29, and is currently hospitalized. Dr. Dean Sidelinger, interim deputy county public health officer, said in a statement, "The investigation is ongoing, and even though the fair is over, there are … [Read more...]

Officials Say There May Be Another E. coli Case at San Diego County Fair

A new, unconfirmed case of Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) illness that may be related to animals at the San Diego County Fair has been reported, according to the County of San Diego Health and Human Services. Lab results have confirmed a previously reported case. The new case is a 6-year-old boy who attended animal displays at the fair in June 2019 and started showing symptoms of the infection on June 26, 2019. He was not hospitalized and is recovering. There have been a total of five cases linked to contact with animals at the fair. Four are confirmed by lab tests and one is a probable case. Dr. Wilma Wooten, M.P.H., County public health officer said in a statement, "As we continue our investigation, more cases are likely to be reported. This is typical of any public … [Read more...]

E. coli Outbreak: One Little Child Dies, Three Sickened at San Diego County Fair

One 2-year-old boy has died, and three other children from 2 to 13 years of age have been sickened with E. coli infections after they visited the San Diego County Fair, according to the County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency.  The infections are apparently linked to contact with animals at that venue. Unfortunately, this is not the first time this has happened. Shiga toxin E. coli (STEC) outbreaks linked to county fairs and petting zoos have occurred several times in the past few years. An outbreak at the Oxford County Fair in Maine in 2015 sickened two small boys; one of them died. An E. coli outbreak at the Milk Makers Fest in Whatcom County, Washington in 2015 sickened 36 children with E. coli infections. And in 2014, an E. coli outbreak sickened 13 people in … [Read more...]

Lawyer Warns of E. coli Danger at Petting Zoos

Attorney Fred Pritzker is parents warning about the dangers of E. coli infections from petting zoos. As the weather warms and summer starts, petting zoos are popular attractions for families with young children. Unfortunately, those venues can be and have been the source of serious and even deadly E. coli outbreaks. The issue is that ruminant animals often held at petting zoos, such as goats, sheep, and cows, can carry Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) bacteria in their guts. The animals don't get sick from this pathogenic bacteria because they lack the gene that permits the bacteria to grow and produce toxins that destroy red blood cells. It doesn't matter how old the animal is; young animals can carry this pathogen. The bacteria are shed in the animal's feces. From there, … [Read more...]

E. coli Illnesses Associated with Grant’s Farm in St. Louis, Missouri

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services is investigating five E. coli cases in people who have visited Grant's Farm, located in St. Louis, since May 2019. This investigation is ongoing and is focused on determining what may have led to the illnesses. Those five people are sick with Shiga toxin-producing E. coli infections (STEC). There is no word on whether any of the patients have been hospitalized, or if any have developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), which is a compilation of a STEC infection that can cause kidney failure. This complication is more common in children under the age of five. The press release also did not state the ages of the patients. Preliminary recommendations to Grant's Farm include reminders of the importance of handwashing after direct … [Read more...]

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