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Salmonella Blog

Surveillance & Analysis on Salmonella News & Outbreaks

Bean Sprout Salmonella Outbreak Nears End

CDC collaborated with public health officials in several states and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to investigate a multistate outbreak of Salmonella Enteritidis infections. Results from this investigation indicated that bean sprouts produced by Wonton Foods, Inc. were the likely source of this outbreak.

A total of 115 persons infected with the outbreak strains were reported from 12 states. The number of ill people identified in each state was as follows: Connecticut (8), Maine (4), Maryland (6), Massachusetts (36), Montana (1), New Hampshire (6), New York (22), Ohio (3), Pennsylvania (18), Rhode Island (7), Vermont (3), and Virginia (1). The one ill person from Montana traveled to the Eastern United States during the period when likely exposure occurred.

2014 Outbreak of Salmonella Montevideo at Brent’s Deli Westlake Village

In July 2014 public health investigators in California learned of an increase of case patients diagnosed with Salmonella serotype Montevideo.  The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) Microbial Disease Laboratory (MDL) conducted pulsed field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) on isolates cultured from patient specimens. Seven patients were infected with an indistinguishable genetic strain identified as JIXX01.0645, an uncommon genetic strain.  Patients resided in Ventura and Los Angeles counties.  Information gathered in interviews conducted by local health investigators revealed that just prior to onset of symptoms; all seven patients had eaten at Brent’s Deli, a restaurant located in Westlake Village, California.  Health officials initiated active surveillance of patients diagnosed with Salmonella Montevideo strain JIXX01.0645. In total 19 patients infected with strain JIXX01.0645 were identified. Two additional patients were infected with strain JIXX01.1565, considered to be a clonal derivative of the main outbreak strain. Two of the 21 patients were employees of Brent’s Deli. Eight patients were hospitalized. Dates of illness onset ranged from April 30, 2014 to August 15, 2014.  See Outbreak Investigation Timeline.

On July 9, 2014 environmental health staff at the County of Ventura Environmental Health Division conducted an on-site inspection at Brent’s Deli. Multiple food safety violations were noted including improper sanitation, cooling and storage issues. The restaurant manager was instructed to correct all violations immediately. A follow-up inspection was conducted on July 22. Major food safety violations were again noted. Specifically, potentially hazardous foods were not held at or below 41 degrees and were not properly cooled. Wiping cloths were not stored in a sanitizing solution between uses. The inspector observed an employee not properly washing hands before handling food or clean utensils. A refrigerator was not operating properly. Plumbing fixtures were leaking and in disrepair. Floor surfaces were damaged preventing adequate cleaning. These items were corrected by the next inspection conducted on July 29. Due to continuing reports of ill customers, Ventura County Environmental Health staff conducted another inspection on August 11. Violations included inadequate hot holding temperatures for corned beef and improper thawing.  On August 12 the restaurant was closed and a third party company was hired to oversee cleaning. Stool specimens were collected from employees who were also required to attend training classes on proper food safety practices.  Food and environmental samples were collected for testing.  Tests showed that two employees were positive for Salmonella Montevideo, strain JIXX01.0645. None of the environmental samples was positive for Salmonella. None of the food samples was positive for Salmonella. The restaurant was allowed to reopen on August 13.  Inspections continued to occur between August 14 and August 19. An inspection was conducted during the week of September 12 and no violations were noted.  The outbreak investigation was closed on October 1, 2014 after no reports of illnesses had been received since August 16, 2014.  See Inspection Reports.

Salmonella Outbreak Announced in New Bedford Massachusetts

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) has notified the local New Bedford Board of Health of several cases of food borne illness linked to food recently served by the Churrascaria Aveirense Restaurant located at 175 Sawyer Street in New Bedford.

The New Bedford Board of Health has asked the restaurant owners to close the establishment until further notice. The Board of Health will not permit the restaurant to reopen until all employees have tested negative for the bacteria and the restaurant has met all food safety requirements.

MADPH has informed the local board of health that several persons have tested positive for the bacteria known as Salmonella. Most persons infected with Salmonella develop diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps 12 to 72 hours after infection. The illness usually lasts 4 to 7 days, and most persons recover without treatment. If you or someone you know is experiencing these symptoms, you should contact your primary health care provider.

Marler Clark Retained in Massachusetts Sprout Case

As of December 15, 2014, a total of 111 people infected with the outbreak strains of Salmonella Enteritidis have been reported from 12 states. Connecticut (8), Maine (4), Maryland (5), Massachusetts (35), Montana (1), New Hampshire (6), New York (21), Ohio (3), Pennsylvania (17), Rhode Island (7), Vermont (3), Virginia (1).

Collaborative investigation efforts of state, local, and federal public health and regulatory agencies indicate that bean sprouts produced by Wonton Foods, Inc. are the likely source of this outbreak.  On November 21, 2014, Wonton Foods Inc. agreed to destroy any remaining products while they conducted a thorough cleaning and sanitization and implemented other Salmonella control measures. On November 24, the firm completed the cleaning and sanitation and resumed production of bean sprouts. The firm resumed shipment on November 29, 2014.

CDC recommends that consumers, restaurants, and other retailers always practice food safety for sprouts.  Children, older adults, pregnant women, and persons with weakened immune systems should avoid eating raw sprouts of any kind (including alfalfa, clover, radish, and mung bean sprouts). Cook sprouts thoroughly to reduce the risk of illness. Cooking sprouts thoroughly kills any harmful bacteria.

Salmonella Sprout Illnesses Rise in 12 States

The CDC reports as of December 15, 2014, a total of 111 people infected with the outbreak strains of Salmonella Enteritidis have been reported from 12 states. Connecticut (8), Maine (4), Maryland (5), Massachusetts (35), Montana (1), New Hampshire (6), New York (21), Ohio (3), Pennsylvania (17), Rhode Island (7), Vermont (3) and Virginia (1).  Twenty-six percent of ill persons have been hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.

Collaborative investigation efforts of state, local, and federal public health and regulatory agencies indicate that bean sprouts produced by Wonton Foods, Inc. are the likely source of this outbreak.   On November 21, 2014, Wonton Foods Inc. agreed to destroy any remaining products while they conducted a thorough cleaning and sanitization and implemented other Salmonella control measures. On November 24, the firm completed the cleaning and sanitation and resumed production of bean sprouts. The firm resumed shipment on November 29, 2014.

CDC recommends that consumers, restaurants, and other retailers always practice food safety for sprouts.  Children, older adults, pregnant women, and persons with weakened immune systems should avoid eating raw sprouts of any kind (including alfalfa, clover, radish, and mung bean sprouts).  Cook sprouts thoroughly to reduce the risk of illness. Cooking sprouts thoroughly kills any harmful bacteria.

Massachusetts Reports Salmonella Outbreak

Food Safety News reports that Massachusetts state and local health department officials are investigating 19 Salmonella cases linked to a restaurant in Holyoke,  Brian Fitzgerald, Holyoke’s health director, told a local TV station that officials were trying to figure out why people were apparently sickened after eating at the Delaney House in Holyoke between Nov. 11 and 15, 2014.

Investigative reports from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health indicate that 19 confirmed Salmonella cases and additional potential cases were traced back to 10 different events held at the Delaney House.

The restaurant has not been shut down, although the state asked local health officials to order the management to comply with several alleged food code violations.

Five food handlers and one non-food handling employee at the restaurant also tested positive for Salmonella. Some of the infected food handlers reportedly worked at events outside of the Delaney House, including the Log Cabin, a take-out restaurant, and various catered events.

Sprouts Sicken 87 in 11 States with Salmonella Enteritidis

As of December 2, 2014, a total of 87 people infected with the outbreak strains of Salmonella Enteritidis have been reported from 11 states.

Twenty-seven percent of ill persons have been hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.

CDC’s National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System (NARMS) laboratory conducted antibiotic resistance testing on Salmonella Enteritidis isolates collected from three ill persons infected with the outbreak strains.

All three isolates were susceptible to all antibiotics tested on the NARMS panel.

Collaborative investigation efforts of state, local, and federal public health and regulatory agencies indicate that bean sprouts produced by Wonton Foods, Inc. are the likely source of this outbreak.

In interviews, 42 (78%) of 54 ill persons reported eating bean sprouts or menu items containing bean sprouts in the week before becoming ill.

Wonton Foods, Inc. continues to cooperate with state and federal public health and agriculture officials.

On November 21, 2014, Wonton Foods, Inc. agreed to destroy any remaining products while they conducted thorough cleaning and sanitization and implemented other Salmonella control measures. On November 24, the firm completed cleaning and sanitization and restarted production of bean sprouts. The firm resumed shipment on November 29, 2014

Contaminated bean sprouts produced by Wonton Foods, Inc. are likely no longer available for purchase or consumption given the maximum 12-day shelf life of mung bean sprouts.

Enchiladas Recalled Over Salmonella Fears

Overhill Farms, Inc. of Vernon, California is voluntarily recalling the frozen food product Open Nature Chile Cheese Enchiladas due to potential Salmonella contamination. The supplier for the organic cilantro contained in such product notified Overhill Farms that the organic cilantro may have Salmonella contamination based on routine testing conducted. The product is sold nationwide at all Safeway-owned stores, including Safeway, Carrs, Genuardi’s, Pak ‘N Save, Pavilions, Randalls, Tom Thumb and Vons.

No illnesses have been reported to date in connection with this voluntary recall.

Open Nature Chile Cheese Enchiladas are a frozen prepared dinner packaged in a box with a net weight of 9 oz. and marked with a UPC 0-7989310436-9. The product was sold at stores from Oct 9, 2014, through December 1, 2014.

Packages with the following lot code and “Best Before” dates are subject to the recall:

Lot Number Best By Date

141006 AUG-06-15

The lot number and best by date can be found on the side panel of the box.

Salmonella Sickens in Connecticut (4), Maine (3), Massachusetts (31), Montana (1), New Hampshire (4), New York (5), Ohio (1), Pennsylvania (10), Rhode Island (6), and Vermont (3) with Sprouts

As of November 24, a total of 68 persons infected with the outbreak strains of Salmonella Enteritidishave been reported from 10 states. The number of ill people identified in each state is as follows: Connecticut (4), Maine (3), Massachusetts (31), Montana (1), New Hampshire (4), New York (5), Ohio (1), Pennsylvania (10), Rhode Island (6), and Vermont (3). The one ill person from Montana traveled to the Eastern United States during the period when likely exposure occurred.

Illness onset dates range from September 30, 2014 to November 10, 2014. Ill persons range in age from younger than one year to 83 years, with a median age of 31 years. Fifty-six percent of ill persons are female. Among 43 persons with available information, 11 (26%) have been hospitalized, and no deaths have been reported.

Collaborative investigation efforts of state, local, and federal public health and regulatory agencies indicate that bean sprouts produced by Wonton Foods, Inc. are the likely source of this outbreak.

The information available to date indicates that bean sprouts produced by Wonton Foods, Inc. may be contaminated with Salmonella and are not safe to eat. As of November 21, 2014, the firm has verbally agreed to voluntarily stop the production and sale of their bean sprouts.

Salmonella Bean Sprout Outbreak in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, Montana, New Hampshire, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Vermont

As of November 21, 2014, the CDC reports a total of 63 persons infected with the outbreak strains of Salmonella Enteritidis have been reported from 10 states: Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, Montana, New Hampshire, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Vermont. The one ill person from Montana traveled to the Eastern United States during the period when likely exposure occurred.

Illness onset dates range from September 30, 2014 to November 8, 2014. Among 42 persons with available information, 11 (26%) have been hospitalized, and no deaths have been reported.

Collaborative investigation efforts of state, local, and federal public health and regulatory agencies indicate that bean sprouts produced by Wonton Foods, Inc. are the likely source of this outbreak.

The information available to date indicates that bean sprouts produced by Wonton Foods, Inc. may be contaminated with Salmonella and are not safe to eat. As of November 21, 2014, the firm has verbally agreed to voluntarily stop the production and sale of their bean sprouts.

CDC recommends that restaurants and other retailers do not sell or serve bean sprouts produced by Wonton Foods, Inc. at this time. CDC recommends that consumers do not eat bean sprouts produced by Wonton Foods, Inc. at this time.