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Salmonella Blog Surveillance & Analysis on Salmonella News & Outbreaks

Tomato Outbreak of Salmonella Saintpaul Grows To 17 States

States with persons with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Saintpaul, by state of residence.

The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention offers the following summary of the outbreak as of today:

Since mid-April, 167 persons infected with Salmonella Saintpaul with the same genetic fingerprint have been identified in 17 states: Arizona (12 persons), California (2), Colorado (1), Connecticut (1), Idaho (2), Illinois (27), Indiana (7), Kansas (5), Michigan (2), New Mexico (39), Oklahoma (3), Oregon (3), Texas (56), Utah (1), Virginia (2), Washington (1), and Wisconsin (3). These were identified because clinical laboratories in all states send Salmonella strains from ill persons to their State public health laboratory for characterization. Among the 73 persons who have been interviewed, illnesses began between April 16 and May 27, 2008. Patients range in age from 1 to 82 years; 49% are female. At least 23 persons were hospitalized.

CDC Comments on How Rarity of Salmonella Saintpaul

Only 3 persons infected with this strain of Salmonella Saintpaul were identified in the country during the same period in 2007. The previous rarity of this strain and the distribution of illnesses in all U.S. regions suggest that the implicated tomatoes are distributed throughout much of the country. Because of inherent delays in reporting and because many persons with Salmonella illness do not have a stool specimen tested, it is likely many more illnesses have occurred than those reported.

US Food & Drug Administration(FDA) Adds 12 States to "Safe" List

The "safe" list of states and countries has been expanded by FDA with the addition of 12 more states.  (In bold face type ) The seven countries on the list remain unchanged. FDA recommends consuming raw red plum, raw red Roma, or raw red round tomatoes only if grown and harvested from the areas that HAVE NOT BEEN ASSOCIATED WITH THE OUTBREAK:

STATES

Alabama                       
Arkansas
California
Georgia
Hawaii
Louisiana
Maine
Maryland
Minnesota
Mississippi
New York
Nebraska
North Carolina
Ohio
Pennsylvania
South Carolina
Tennessee
Texas
West Virginia

FOREIGN COUNTRIES

Belgium
Canada
Dominican Republic
Guatemala
Israel
Netherlands
Puerto Rico