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Marler Blog Providing Commentary on Food Poisoning Outbreaks & Litigation

Mail Order Chicks and Ducks Link in Salmonella Altona Outbreak

ChicksDucks.JPGCDC is collaborating with public health and agriculture officials in many states and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Poultry Improvement Plan (NPIP) to investigate a multistate outbreak of human Salmonella serotype Altona infections. As of May 25, 2011, a total of 25 individuals infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Altona have been reported from 11 states. The number of ill persons identified in each state is as follows: Indiana (1), Kentucky (3), Maryland (2), Minnesota (1), North Carolina (4), New York (1), Ohio (7), Pennsylvania (2), Tennessee (2), Virginia (1), and Vermont (1).

Investigators are using the PulseNet system to identify cases of illness that may be part of this outbreak. In PulseNet, the national network of public health and food regulatory agency laboratories coordinated by CDC, DNA is analyzed from bacteria obtained through diagnostic testing of ill people. Findings of multiple traceback investigations of live chicks and ducklings from homes of ill persons have identified a single mail-order hatchery as the source of these chicks and ducklings.