May 29, 2024

Cantaloupe Salmonella Outbreak Includes 4 Deaths in Minnesota

The cantaloupe Salmonella outbreak that ended in January included four deaths in Minnesota, one in Oregon, and one in Indiana, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In Canada, seven deaths were reported. "The number of fatalities is unusually high," said Food Safety Attorney Eric Hageman whose law firm Pritzker Hageman is representing people sickened in the outbreak.  The outbreak was linked to Salmonella Oranienburg and Salmonella Sundsvall, a rare strain that causes severe illness, said Hageman, who is also the Publisher of Food Poisoning Bulletin.   The hospitalization rate was also higher than average. The outbreak, linked to Malichita and Rudy brand cantaloupe imported from Mexico, ended on January 19 with 407 illnesses, 158 hospitalizations, and six … [Read more...]

What is Salmonella Salmonella I 4:I:-?

It's the source of an outbreak linked to tainted charcuterie, but what Salmonella I 4:I:-? A strain by that name hasn't been associated with any previous outbreaks, recalls, or illnesses, so it had us intrigued until the Minnesota Department of Health cleared up the mystery. "This isn’t a new or different serotype but a change in laboratory methods. Since we now do serotyping using whole genome sequencing, 4 [5] 12:I:- is now reported as 4:I:-," an epidemiologist in the Foodborne Unit explained. Salmonella 4 [5] 12:I:- is a "monophasic variant of Salmonella Typhimurium, and it is an emerging threat to both human and animal health," according to a recent study. Contaminated feed is considered the primary vehicle, researchers found.  The strain has caused several recent food … [Read more...]

Salmonella Outbreak Tied to “Highly Contaminated” Cantaloupe

Cantaloupe tied to a Salmonella outbreak that has caused hundreds of illnesses and eight deaths in the U.S. and Canada is likely "very highly contaminated," April Hexemer, an epidemiologist and director of outbreak management with the Public Health Agency Canada told CBC News this week. Cross-Contamination Risk In addition to causing severe illness, highly contaminated food also poses a major risk of cross-contaminating other foods and surfaces. The Minnesota Department of Agriculture is one of the state agencies working with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on a "traceback" investigation tracing back the melons' journey from store shelves to fields where they were grown. Minnesota is one of two states where fatalities have been reported in this outbreak. Oregon is the … [Read more...]

Salmonella Oranienburg Cantaloupe, Cut Fruit and Canada Redux

In its November 30 update on a deadly cantaloupe Salmonella outbreak, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) revealed the fast-growing outbreak has caused 180 illnesses, 78 hospitalizations, and three deaths in the U.S. and Canada. And that some of the patients are residents of long-term care facilities. The update also disclosed that a second Salmonella strain, Salmonella Oranienburg, has been linked to some of these illnesses. And that's notable because Oranienburg isn't a top-10 strain in the U.S. It's been linked to a handful of multistate outbreaks over the last two decades. There was a 2014 chia powder outbreak,  back-to-back outbreaks linked to shell eggs produced by the same company in 2015 and 2016,  and a 2021 fresh onions outbreak that sickened 1,040 … [Read more...]

Does Indiana Cantaloupe Have a Salmonella Problem?

Last week, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) closed without solving its investigation of a Salmonella Newport outbreak that sickened 11 people in August. But information the agency gathered during its probe unearthed a troubling finding. During interviews with patients, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) learned that people who got sick had eaten cantaloupe or watermelon before developing symptoms of Salmonella infections. Tracing the source of the melons back from the point of purchase, the FDA was able to determine that the melons were grown in Southwest Indiana. Three environmental samples collected from farms there matched the outbreak strain of Salmonella Newport. Other samples from a “farm of interest and surrounding areas” were positive for … [Read more...]

A Recurring Salmonella Strain and a Secret, Deadly Ground Beef Outbreak

Two years before a 2018 Salmonella outbreak linked to ground beef produced by JBS Tolleson triggered one of the largest beef recalls in modern history, another outbreak, a secret and deadly one was linked to the same strain. The deadly 2016 outbreak was never announced and no recall was ever issued because the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (USDA FSIS) said traceback records didn't conclusively point to a single establishment. So, contaminated ground beef was sold to consumers and 106 people in 21 states got Salmonella infections. Forty-eight percent of the patients were hospitalized, and one person died. One year after that outbreak ended, the first illness in the 2018 outbreak was reported. That outbreak, which was publicly announced, eventually … [Read more...]

Polls: Consumers Back Stronger Salmonella Standards, Industry is Split

A nationwide poll shows overwhelming support for stricter poultry regulations aimed at reducing the number of illnesses from Salmonella and other foodborne pathogens. The poll of 1,000 registered voters, conducted by the nonprofit STOP Foodborne Illness, found 86 percent of voters want the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to adopt such changes. In the U.S., Salmonella causes more foodborne illness than any other bacteria, about 1.35 million cases each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Contaminated poultry accounts for about 23 percent of those illnesses. For more than two decades, the USDA has been trying to reduce Salmonella illnesses by testing for the presence of the bacteria on poultry at processing plants. But over that time period, … [Read more...]

Kellogg Salmonella Lawyer Explains Outbreak Will Most Likely Grow

Kellogg Salmonella lawyer explains why this multistate outbreak linked to Honey Smacks cereal, which has already sickened 73 people in 31 states, will most likely grow. "The cereal was recalled on June 14, 2018, but unfortunately, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said this week that consumers should not "eat Kellogg's Honey Smacks cereal of any size package or with any 'best if used by' date," said Fred Pritzker, a food safety attorney who is representing clients sickened in this outbreak. Consumers should discard any size of this product they may have on hand, even if some of it was eaten and no one has been sick. "Salmonella bacteria can cluster in tiny, tiny clumps and may not be distributed evenly throughout the cereal," Fred added. "In addition, the recall … [Read more...]

Mr. Rick’s Flouted Permit Rule For Years Before Salmonella Outbreak

Mr Rick's Catering, the source of a Salmonella outbreak in Washington state, operated for years without a permit, ignoring health department warnings to stop doing so even after being fined.  Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department named Mr Rick's in a warning it issued about the importance of choosing a caterer with a permit to operate. The event was attended by as many as 175 people, but not all of them are sick. The health department "has notified Mr. Rick’s Catering not to operate several times since 2012, and as a result of the incident in Snohomish County, recently issued a $710 fee for continuing to operate without a permit. In the interest of protecting public health, and because the business owner continues to advertise as a viable business, Tacoma-Pierce County Health … [Read more...]

E. coli and Salmonella Outbreaks from Nuts, Nut Butters and Nut Cheese

Nuts and products made from them are common sources of food poisoning as a look back at some E.coli and Salmonella outbreaks shows. Yesterday, a Salmonella outbreak linked to Wonderful brand pistachios that has sickened 11 people was announced by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  A recall has been issued for pistachios sold under the brand names Wonderful, Paramount Farms, and Trader Joe’s, consumers who have purchased the recalled nuts should not eat them. In 2015, a Salmonella outbreak linked to Jem brand nut butters sickened 13 people in 10 states. A recall was issued for the products which were linked to illnesses from July 2015 to November 2015. Cases of Salmonella Paratyphi B variant L(+) tartrate(+) infection were reported from the following states … [Read more...]

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