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Marler Blog Providing Commentary on Food Poisoning Outbreaks & Litigation

Wegmans Turkish Pine Nuts Sicken 42 with Salmonella in Arizona, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and Virginia

Turkish pine nuts sold in bulk bins at Wegmans grocery stores, and some Turkish pine nuts consumed as an ingredient in prepared foods, such as Caprese salad or asparagus with pine nuts, sold at Wegmans stores, have been linked to an outbreak of Salmonella Enteritidis. According to the CDC, among 30 ill persons for whom information is available, 19 (63%) reported consuming Turkish pine nuts or products containing these pine nuts in the week before their illness began.

Screen Shot 2011-10-26 at 5.12.42 PM.pngLaboratory testing conducted by the Virginia Division of Consolidated Laboratory Services isolated the outbreak strain of Salmonella Enteritidis from Turkish pine nuts that were purchased from bulk bins at Wegmans stores and collected from an ill person’s home. The Virginia Division of Consolidated Laboratory Services also isolated the outbreak strain of Salmonella Enteritidis from retail samples of Turkish pine nuts collected from a Wegmans store where ill persons reported shopping. Laboratory testing conducted by the New York State Department of Health, Wadsworth Center Laboratory, isolated Salmonella Enteritidis from two separate samples of homemade pesto containing Turkish pine nuts from two unrelated ill persons’ homes, and from Turkish pine nuts which were purchased from bulk bins at a Wegmans store and collected from another ill person’s home. Both samples of homemade pesto have been tested and it is determined the Salmonella in these pine nuts is also the outbreak strain. Further tests on the whole bulk pine nuts are pending.

A total of 42 individuals infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Enteritidis have been reported from 6 states. The number of ill persons identified in each state with the outbreak strain is as follows: Arizona (1), Maryland (1), New Jersey (2), New York (26), Pennsylvania (8), and Virginia (4).