May 29, 2024

Salmonella in Raw Breaded Stuffed Chicken Is an Adulterant

Salmonella in raw breaded stuffed chicken products is an adulterant, according to a policy finalized today by the USDA. These items have been linked to many outbreaks in the United States over the last few years. The proposal was released in April 2023. These items are declared adulterated when they exceed a specific threshold (1 colony forming unit per gram or higher) for Salmonella. This is part of a broader USDA effort to reduce Salmonella illnesses associated with the raw poultry supply. Contamination in other raw poultry products will be addressed later this year. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said in a statement, "Under President Biden’s leadership, USDA is taking significant steps toward keeping American consumers safe from foodborne illness. This final determination … [Read more...]

Foodborne Illness is Back to Pre-Pandemic Levels

Foodborne illness is back to pre-pandemic levels for some pathogens, according to research published in the Center for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) for the week of June 30, 2023. The incidences that were higher were infections caused by Shiga toxin-producing E. coli, Yersinia, Vibrio, and cyclopsora. Campylobacter, Salmonella, Shigella, and Listeria illness levels did not change.   In other words, progress in reducing enteric infection levels was not observed in 2022. The report states that collaboration among food growers, processors, retail stores, restaurants, and regulators is needed to reduce pathogen contamination during poultry slaughter and to prevent contamination of leafy greens. During the pandemic, foodborne … [Read more...]

Proposal to Declare Salmonella an Adulterant in Breaded Stuffed Chicken

The USDA has released their proposal to declare Salmonella an adulterant at "very low levels" in breaded stuffed raw chicken products. The announcement that a proposal was coming was made in August 2022. These types of products have been linked to many food poisoning outbreaks in the past several years. In fact, since 1998, raw breaded stuffed chicken products have been associated with up to 14 outbreaks and at least 200 illnesses. The last outbreak was in 2021, when 28 people in 8 states were sickened after eating Serenade Foods stuffed chicken products including Kirkwood and Milford Valley brands. This proposal builds on the USDA's proposed regulatory framework to reduce Salmonella infections linked to poultry products. Salmonella causes about 1.35 million human illnesses and … [Read more...]

Fifteen Tips to Avoid Food Poisoning

Whenever there is a good poisoning outbreak, odds are that the outbreak notice will include some information about how consumers can protect themselves against contaminated food. While it is illegal for companies to sell food contaminated with enough pathogens to make someone ill, it happens all the time. These 15 tips to avoid food poisoning may help. Despite efforts from the federal government, industry, food processors, and farmers, the number of food poisoning cases in America isn't going down. There are still about 48,000,000 cases of food poisoning every year in this country, with about 126,000 hospitalizations and 3,000 deaths. But there are things you can do to protect yourself and your family. In fact, there are (at least) 15 tips to avoid food poisoning. Fifteen Tips … [Read more...]

Appliance Choice For Cooking Frozen Stuffed Chicken is Problematic

Appliance choice for cooking frozen stuffed chicken products is problematic, according to a new report in the CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR). Frozen stuffed chicken products have been linked to Salmonella outbreaks in the past few years, including one in the summer of 2021, and given detailed cooking instructions on the package, these outbreaks are concerning. An internet panel was convened to find out how consumers are cooking these raw breaded stuffed chicken products, which are covered in browned breadcrumbs so they do appear to be fully cooked. More than one-half of these respondents said they used an appliance other than an oven to cook them. In fact, 29% said they used a microwave oven, even though labels warn against using that appliance. About 30% of … [Read more...]

USDA Declares Salmonella Adulterant in Breaded Stuffed Chicken

The USDA declares Salmonella adulterant in raw breaded stuffed chicken products, after many outbreaks linked to this type of food, including one that occurred in 2021. This will let the USDA make sure that these products, which can be "highly contaminated" according to the press release, will not be sold to consumers when Salmonella is found in them. Since 1998, raw breaded stuffed chicken products have been associated with up to 14 outbreaks and at least 200 illnesses. These products are sold frozen and include products like chicken cordon bleu or chicken Kiev. The chicken appears cooked because the breading is brown, but they are sold raw and must be cooked to 165°F before consumption. They are heat-treated only to set the batter or breading. Companies have improved their … [Read more...]

New Salmonella Muenchen Beef Outbreak on USDA Investigation Table

A new Salmonella Muenchen beef outbreak has been posted on the USDA Outbreak Investigation Table, with no more information provided. This table provides even less information than the FDA CORE Outbreak Table, which at least tells us the number of people sick, and whether traceback or other work has started. So we do not know how many people are sick, what states they live in, whether traceback has begun, if any onsite inspections have started, and if any food has been collected and tested for pathogens. All of those things must start before an outbreak can be officially announced. There is only one other active outbreak on that table, an E. coli O157:H7 outbreak that may also be linked to beef. No more information has been provided about that outbreak either. So far this year, … [Read more...]

Nine Multistate Salmonella Outbreaks in 2021 Sickened More Than 1,200

Nine multistate Salmonella outbreaks in 2021 sickened more than 1,200 Americans and hospitalized 250, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The only Salmonella outbreak that has continued into 2022 is the Salmonella Oranienburg outbreak linked to fresh onions imported from Mexico. All of these outbreaks were linked to a specific product, and all were associated with at least one recall or public health alert. The outbreaks include: Plainville Farms ground turkey Salmonella Hadar outbreak In this outbreak, 33 people in 14 states were sickened and four were hospitalized. The patient case count by state was: Arizona (1), Connecticut (2), Indiana (1), Maine (1), Maryland (1), Massachusetts (7), Missouri (2), New Hampshire (1), New Jersey (3), New York (4), … [Read more...]

Kirkwood Breaded Stuffed Chicken Salmonella Outbreak Number 4 of 2021

The Kirkwood breaded stuffed chicken Salmonella Enteritidis outbreak is the number four multistate food poisoning outbreak of 2021, with at least 36 people sickened in 11 states. Twelve people were hospitalized because they were so ill. The patient case count by state was: Arizona (4), Arkansas (1), Connecticut (1), Illinois (10), Indiana (4), Michigan (1), Minnesota (4), Nevada (1), New York (7), Ohio (1), and Oklahoma (2). Illness onset dates ranged from February 21, 2021 to August 16, 2021. Patients ranged in age from one year to 83. The Minnesota Department of Agriculture found the outbreak strain of Salmonella Enteritidis in two samples of Kirkwood's Chicken Cordon Bleu after collecting five frozen raw breaded stuffed chicken products from a grocery store where an ill person … [Read more...]

Salmonella Outbreak Linked to Kirkwood Breaded Stuffed Chicken Ends

The Salmonella outbreak linked to Kirkwood breaded stuffed chicken produced by Serenade Foods has ended, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  In all, 36 people in 11 states have been sickened. Twelve people were hospitalized. The patient case count by state is: Arizona (4), Arkansas (1), Connecticut (1), Illinois (10), Indiana (4), Michigan (1), Minnesota (4), Nevada (1), New York (7), Ohio (1), and Oklahoma (2). The new cases since the last update on August 11, 2021 are from Arkansas, Ohio, and Oklahoma. The case count increased by eight patients since that last update. Illness onset dates ranged from February 21, 2021 to August 16, 2021. The patient age range is from one year to 83 years. Of 32 people who gave information to investigators, 12 were … [Read more...]

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