The FDA has posted lists of retailers that may have received queso fresco cheeses that are linked to a deadly outbreak of Listeria monocytogenes infections. The lists may not include all retailers that received the cheeses but are current as of today.

Investigators with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration who are working with state agencies are reporting that the cheeses made by El Abuelito Cheese Inc. in Paterson, NJ, have been distributed in at least 25 states. The FDA investigation update says the products may have been distributed further.

So far it is known that the following states received the implicated cheese, samples of which have tested positive for Listeria monocytogenes: Alabama, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Jersey, New York, Nebraska, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and Wisconsin.

As of the posting of the FDA investigation update, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had not posted an outbreak update. The CDC’s most recent update on March 1, said there had been 11 illnesses confirmed across four states with one death.

The FDA is encouraging consumers and retailers to check homes and stores to determine whether they have any of the recalled cheeses on hand. Recalled brands by cheese type include:

  • Queso Fresco: El Abuelito, Rio Grande, Rio Lindo
  • Quesillo: El Abuelito, El Viejito, El Paisano, El Sabrosito, La Cima, Quesos Finos, San Carlos, Ideal Brands
  • Requeson: El Abuelito, El Viejito

Retail Establishments that Received El Abuelito Brand Queso Fresco, Quesillo, and Requeson Products are listed here.

Retail Establishments that Received Private Label Brand Queso Fresco (Rio Grande, Rio Lindo), Quesillo (El Viejito, El Paisano, El Sabrosito, La Cima, Quesos Finos, San Carlos, Ideal Brands), and Requeson Products (El Viejito) are listed here.

Read the full update

Epidemiologic and laboratory data show that queso fresco cheeses made by El Abuelito Cheese Inc. are contaminated with Listeria and have made people sick.

Since the last update on February 19, three more illnesses have been reported. As of February 23, a total of 10 people infected with the outbreak strain of Listeria monocytogenes have been reported from four states – New York, Connecticut, Maryland and Virginia. Illnesses started on dates ranging from October 20, 2020, to February 9, 2021, with nine recent illnesses in 2021.

Sick people range in age from <1 to 75 years, with a median age of 54. Nine people are Hispanic, and six people are female. Two illnesses are pregnancy-associated. Out of nine people with information available, all have been hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.

The true number of sick people in an outbreak is likely higher than the number reported, and the outbreak may not be limited to the states with known illnesses. This is because some people recover without medical care and are not tested for Listeria. In addition, recent illnesses may not yet be reported as it usually takes 2 to 4 weeks to determine if a sick person is part of an outbreak.

Investigators are concerned that additional El Abuelito brand cheeses made or handled in the same facility as the queso fresco may be contaminated with Listeria. CDC and FDA are expanding our advice to recommend people not eat, sell, or serve any cheeses sold under the brand name of El Abuelito, in addition to the recalled queso fresco cheeses.

On February 16, 2021, Connecticut official found Listeria in samples of El Albuelito brand queso fresco cheese collected from a store where a sick person bought Hispanic-style fresh and soft cheeses. Investigators are working to confirm if the Listeria bacteria found in this queso fresco is the same bacteria making people sick in this outbreak.

As of February 11, 2021, seven people infected with the outbreak strain of Listeria monocytogenes have been reported from four states – Connecticut, Maryland, New York and Virginia. Illnesses started on dates ranging from October 20, 2020, to January 22, 2021, with six recent illnesses in 2021.

The true number of sick people in an outbreak is likely higher than the number reported, and the outbreak may not be limited to the states with known illnesses. This is because some people recover without medical care and are not tested for Listeria. In addition, recent illnesses may not yet be reported as it usually takes 2 to 4 weeks to determine if a sick person is part of an outbreak.

Sick people range in age from 45 to 75 years, with a median age of 61. Six people are Hispanic, and 43% are female. All seven people have been hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.

State and local public health officials are interviewing people about the foods they ate in the month before they got sick. Of the four people interviewed, three reported eating at least one type of Hispanic-style fresh and soft cheese and all three reported eating queso fresco. Public health officials are continuing to interview sick people to try to identify a specific type or brand of cheese.

In an increasing era of transparency, the FDA, along with its food safety partners at the CDC and FSIS, have for the last several months been listing and announcing  investigations of foodborne illness outbreaks – even if a source is not determined – and may never be found.

The following is a list of outbreak investigations being managed by FDA’s CORE Response Teams. The investigations are in a variety of stages, meaning that some outbreaks have limited information, and others may be near completion.

public health advisory will be issued for outbreak investigations that have resulted in specific, actionable steps for consumers to take to protect themselves. Please direct your attention to those pages for the most up to date information on the investigation and for consumer protection information.

Outbreak investigations that do not result in specific, actionable steps for consumers may or may not conclusively identify a source or reveal any contributing factors. If a source and/or contributing factors are identified that could inform future prevention, FDA commits to providing a summary of those findings.

Over at the CDC:
Over at FSIS:

According to Food Safety News, the FDA is launching a new, temporary testing program for the romaine lettuce from commercial coolers in the Yuma, AZ, growing region. Romaine from the area has been linked to several foodborne illness outbreaks in recent years.

Samples will be tested for Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) and Salmonella spp. as part of ongoing surveillance efforts following the spring 2018 multistate E. coli O157:H7 outbreak of foodborne illness. Since then there have been other outbreaks linked to romaine from the Yuma area and parts of California. Salmonella spp. also commonly causes foodborne illness outbreaks in the United States which have at times been linked to romaine lettuce consumption, according to a statement today from the Food and Drug Administration.

The FDA plans to begin collecting samples from commercial coolers in February and intends to continue sampling through the end of the romaine harvest season in Yuma. The FDA testing program will focus on the commercial cooler and cold storage facilities where field heat is removed from harvested romaine and where the product is cold stored before processing and shipment, according to the agency announcement.

Consistent with the action plan, the agency will engage with the industry in conducting root cause analyses for any positive samples found during this assignment. Root cause analyses are important in that they seek to identify potential sources and routes of contamination, inform what preventive measures are needed, and help prevent outbreaks of foodborne illness.

Here is Dan Flynn’s editorial from Food Safety News from Spring 2012:

Big Fresh has the blood on its hands.

The big fruit and vegetable lobby managed to kill a little food safety program (Microbiologic Date Program – MDP) that cost this $3 trillion government a grand total of $5 million annually. Chump change.

Big Fresh meanwhile has its snout so far up the 2012 Farm Bill trough that it’s going to reap hundreds of millions of dollars worth of business for fruit and vegetable growers, thanks to the federal government’s willingness to take our money and put us further in debt.

But nothing for the little “trip wire” that was out there catching pathogens in fruits and vegetables – not even after last year’s (2011) cantaloupe-caused Listeria incident that killed more people than any other foodborne illness outbreak in a century.

Big Fresh, also known as the United Fresh Produce Association, through its paid lobbyists, gets the credit for the kill.

But as my more objective colleagues Helena Bottemiller and Gretchen Goetz have reported over the past few months, it was President Obama who zeroed out USDA’s 11-year old Microbiological Data Program in the fiscal year 2013 budget.

Back in February, U.S. Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-CT, grilled Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack over the bone-headed move. The Secretary hemmed and hawed about the MDP being inconsistent with the mission of USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service.

Actually, that’s true. The AMS has never really been much concerned about food safety, nor is Big Fresh.

Rep. DeLauro probably would have been more effective if she’d pointed out that 7 of the 11 state laboratories involved in MDP are located in swing states and it really does not look good for the president to putting those “lab rats” out of work.

Sadly, other than the heroic stand DeLauro did make, the rest of the Congress complied. It means the states involved will be shutting down the program in July when their laboratories get their last payment.

Speaking of payments, it will be interesting to see how much money Obama and members of Congress on the relevant committees will be collecting before this year is out from those who put fruits and vegetables on their employment line.

While putting its foot on the oxygen tube for the only program testing produce for pathogens, Big Fresh is racking up millions upon millions for fruit and vegetable growers in the 2012 Farm Bill games.

The Fresh Fruit and Vegetable line item alone is said to be approaching $200 million. Big Fresh wants that money, for sure, but nothing for testing fresh produce for pathogens.

From 2002-2011, the MDP conducted tests in 42 states on 120,887 samples of fruits and vegetables, including cantaloupe, celery, green onions, hot peppers, leaf lettuce, romaine lettuce, bagged lettuce, parsley, peanut butter, spinach, bagged spinach, alfalfa sprouts and tomatoes.

By my calculation, these tests were completed at a cost of something north of about $200 each. Believe me, Big Fresh spilled more on the floor of their last congressional reception than that.

Leave it to Washington D.C. to kill a tiny cost-effective food safety program while being clueless about fiscal responsibility in general.

Let’s give credit to where credit is due. Big Fresh gets credit for:

– Killing the nation’s only produce surveillance program.

– Turning Congress against the only program to collect data on the prevalence of foodborne pathogens in domestic and imported produce.

– Leaving the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and state health departments in the dark about the incidence of pathogens in fresh produce commodities.

Under the MDP program, positive test results were immediately reported to FDA, CDC and state health agencies. MDP testing was responsible for 23 produce recalls during 2010 and 2011 alone, and 15 of those involved human illnesses.

Like I said, MDP testing has been a trip wire. If Big Fresh came with a brain, it would be able to figure out on its own that a system that catches problems early is best for fruit and vegetable growers.

Big Fresh, however, does not have clue. As recently as last week, a bagged organic spinach recall for Salmonella was because an MDP lab detected the contamination.

Yes, fresh produce gets consumed pretty quickly, often before test results are known. But that was no reason to kill MDP. We should be going back to places where contamination has occurred and find out what’s going on.

Had there been an early test of Jensen Farms cantaloupe, maybe some government inspector – state or federal – might have paid a visit and said: “Hey! Isn’t that a potato washer?”

Such a discovery might have saved as many as 36 lives that poisoned cantaloupes took last growing season. That blood is not on Big Fresh’s hands. Next time, we’ll see.

Here is Thomson International’s and their financial backers position on a Salmonella outbreak that has sickened thousands in the United States and Canada:

The FDA took over 2000 swabs of Thomson’s onions, fields and facilities and were unable to locate any trace of Salmonella Newport. In fact, the FDA has since cleared Thomson International and has allowed them to continue their operations.

It appears at this time the FDA made a rash decision to recall Thomson’s onions and although their investigation has not concluded as to the root cause of the Salmonella Newport, the FDA has advised they are no longer looking at Thomson as the cause.

Based on our investigation to date, we cannot entertain any claims presented as a result of this recall at this time. Be assured Thomson has complied with all FDA requests and will preserve any evidence obtained as a result of this recall investigation.

Here is the FDA’s, CDCs and food safety and public health entities in Canada’s position:

On July 9, 2020, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state partners commenced an investigated of an outbreak of Salmonella Newport cases linked to red, white, yellow, and sweet yellow onions in 2020. This outbreak was assigned the CDC ID 2007MLJJP-1.

As of October 8, a total of 1,127 lab confirmed cases of Salmonella Newport from 48 states (AK 25, AL 2, AZ 39, AR 2, CA 128, CO 32, CT 2, DE 2, FL 8, GA 11, HI 3, ID 43, IL 54, IN 4, IA 31, KS 3, KY 3, ME 6,  MD 7, MA 2, MI 47, MN 19, MS 5, MO 11, MT 72, NE 10, NV 11, NH 1, NJ 12, NM 3, NY 14, NC 6, ND 9, OH 11, OK 1, OR 109, PA 27, RI 3, SC 1, SD 23, TN 7, TX 2, UT 115, VA 10, WA 150, WV 3, WI 11, WY 27) have been counted in the outbreak. Illnesses started between June 19 and September 11, 2020. Cases ranged from under one 1 to 102 years old (median 41). Fifty-eight percent of cases were female. Of the 705 cases with information available, 167 reported hospitalization and none were reported to have died. All case isolates were closely related to each other (within 0-6 alleles).

In Canada there were 515 confirmed cases of Salmonella Newport illness linked to this outbreak in the following provinces: British Columbia (121), Alberta (293), Saskatchewan (35), Manitoba (26), Ontario (14), Quebec (25) and Prince Edward Island (1). Individuals became sick between mid-June and late-August 2020. Seventy-nine individuals were hospitalized. Three people died, but Salmonella did not contribute to the cause of these deaths. Individuals who became ill were between 1 and 100 years of age. The majority of cases (54%) were female. Individuals who were ill reported eating red onions at home, in menu items ordered at restaurants and in residential care settings. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) conducted a food safety investigation and issued related food recall warnings. More information on recalled products is available on CFIA’s website. The U.S. CDC also reported an outbreak of Salmonella Newport illnesses with a similar genetic fingerprint to illnesses reported in Canada.

In interviews conducted with cases, ninety-five percent of people reported eating onions or foods containing onions in the week before they fell ill. Of the 208 cases with information available, 66% reported red onion consumption, 63% reported white onion consumption, and 53% reported yellow onion consumption. Fifty-eight percent of cases reported exposure to several types of onions. Thirty-four distinct clusters have been identified in 13 states to be associated with this outbreak. Information was collected on 23 of these clusters, and restaurants and grocery stores associated with these 23 clusters were found to serve red (17), yellow (13), or white (10) onions. Sixteen subclustered were associated with multiple onion exposures.

Epidemiologic evidence and traceback information indicated that red onions were the likely source of this outbreak. However, due to harvesting practices, other onions were likely contaminated as well. Onions by Thomson International, Inc. of Bakersfield, California and several other companies (ALDI, Food Lion, Giant Eagle, Hello Fresh, Imperfect Foods, Kroger, Publix, Ralph’s, Trader Joe’s, and Walmart) were recalled in response to this outbreak starting August 1, 2020. Foods made with the recalled onions, such as cheese dips and spreads, salsas, and chicken salads were also recalled in association with the outbreak (from Fred Meyer, Fry’s Food Stores, Giant Eagle, Kroger, Smith’s, Spokane Produce, Stop and Shop, Walmart, Amana Meat Shop and Smokehouse, and Taylor Farms). Hello Fresh recalled onions received by customers between May 8 and July 31 on August 19, 2020.

A sharp decline in cases occurred after the onion recall, furthering the likelihood of them as the source of the outbreak. FDA conducted environmental sampling at farms and processing plants of interest, but no matching strains were discovered at these locations. On October 8, 2020, the outbreak was considered over.

1.25.2020 FSIS Salmonella Campylobacter Petition FINAL

Food safety advocates are calling on the United States Department of Agriculture to better protect consumers with new enforceable standards that will reduce, with an aim to ultimately eliminate, Salmonella types of greatest public health concern while continuing to target reductions in Salmonella and Campylobacter overall. The petition also asks the agency to require slaughterhouses to control risks in their supply chains, following best practices for food safety from farm to fork. The groups say the changes are needed in order to achieve public health goals for the coming decade.

In a regulatory petition filed today with USDA, the Center for Science in the Public Interest, Consumer Federation of America, Consumer Reports, and Stop Foodborne Illness (STOP), as well as David Clubb, Amanda Craten, Diana Goodpasture, Mary Graba, and Melissa Lee, individual victims of foodborne illness, are urging the agency’s Food Safety and Inspection Service to target the strains of Salmonella that are of the greatest public health concern, as opposed to regulating Salmonella as a single species. One of the most common Salmonellastrains in poultry products, Salmonella Kentucky, rarely causes illness in consumers, while other strains, such as Enteritidis and Heidelberg are far more likely to cause illness and send consumers to the hospital. Other strains, like Typhimurium and Infantis, are concerning because they are more likely to resist treatment with antibiotics.

The groups are also asking the agency to require slaughterhouses to adopt science-based tools to prevent animals from being infected by these bacteria on the farm, including by vaccinating live poultry and monitoring farms for the presence of dangerous bacteria. Such practices have been in effect for years in Europe, where they helped bring about substantial declines in foodborne illness rates.

“Consumers want to be able to trust that the food they eat is safe,” said Amanda Craten, a petitioner and member of the Board of Directors at STOP, whose 18-month son was seriously injured and permanently disabled as a result of Salmonella-contaminated chicken. “My family wants nothing more than to ensure the USDA is using the best possible tools to keep others from suffering what we have suffered.”

At the start of the last decade, USDA and other federal agencies committed to meeting the Healthy People 2020 goals, which aimed to improve the health and wellbeing of Americans, including by reducing the incidence of foodborne illness caused by Salmonella and Campylobacter. Yet at the close of 2020, progress on both fronts has been dismal: incidence of illness from both types of bacteria has remained as high, if not higher, than it was at the start of the decade.

“We have seen little progress in actually reducing the number of people getting sick from Salmonella or Campylobacter,” said CSPI deputy director of regulatory affairs Sarah Sorscher. “A big reason for that is the USDA has yet to take full advantage of the best current technology and science to control foodborne disease from farm to fork.”

New targets aimed at tackling illness from Salmonella and Campylobacter have been set for Healthy People 2030. These two pathogens together caused over 70 percent of the confirmed foodborne illnesses from bacteria or parasites tracked by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Foodborne Diseases Active Surveillance Network in the U.S. in 2019. Many of the illnesses are caused by contaminated raw poultry meat, which can sicken unsuspecting consumers after even seemingly minor lapses in at-home food safety practices.

“It’s unacceptable that the USDA is lagging so far behind the science, other food safety regulatory bodies and some members of the poultry industry itself in requiring adequate controls to prevent illnesses from these bacteria,” said Michael Taylor, a former USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service administrator and current board co-chair of STOP.  “At the end of the day, the agency’s priority should be protecting the consumer from preventable illness.”

Other groups have also called for similar changes. In 2019, the National Advisory Committee on Microbiological Criteria for Foods, a committee of scientific experts that advises USDA, recommended that the agency consider pre-harvest controls and the development of approaches that prevent Salmonella strains of public health concern from contaminating raw poultry products.

“A science-based approach is imperative to identifying the measures and controls that will help reduce foodborne illness rates linked to Salmonella and Campylobacter,” said Brian Ronholm, director of food policy for Consumer Reports, and former USDA deputy undersecretary for food safety. “We must leverage FSIS’ public health expertise, available science, and industry best practices in order to fully protect consumers.”

The current petition comes nearly a year after a petition filed by food safety attorney Bill Marler on behalf of consumer groups, which called to ban 31 “outbreak serotypes” of Salmonella in meat and poultry. Two of the signatories to the Marler petition, Consumer Federation of America and Consumer Reports, also signed the petition submitted today, which builds on the Marler petition by laying out a process for USDA to create enforceable standards to target and ultimately eliminate priority Salmonella serotypes, as determined by USDA, while also addressing risks from Campylobacter and requiring slaughterhouses to control food safety risks all the way back to the farm.

“For too long, progress on reducing infections caused by Salmonella and Campylobacter in meat and poultry has stalled,” said Thomas Gremillion, Director of Food Policy at Consumer Federation of America. “The science and technology available to reduce foodborne illness has advanced by leaps and bounds, but USDA food safety regulations have not kept up. That needs to change.”

Rest in Peace Larry King.

I wrote in my blog that in March 2009 I finally made it to the Blakely, Georgia Peanut Corporation of America plant.  Despite being scrubbed a bit in the last few months after the announcement of the outbreak, we still found mice and cockroaches in the plant with several spots where the roof had been clearly leaking.  Really little question that any company purchasing product from this plant should have been on notice of the risks had they ever taken the time for a quick visit.  There were no lights nor air-conditioning in the plant (someone did not pay the bills I guess).  I did find the below letter sitting in the fax machine in the office.  Guess it came just before “the lights went out in Georgia.”  At Mr. King’s request I took the letter offline – the letter had his producer’s cell phone number on it. Mr. King wanted Parnell to tell his story.

After being in Plainview and Blakely, where over 100 people lost their jobs, after seeing untilled peanut fields as I drove across South Georgia, I wonder where the hell the Peanut Association and the Georgia Department of Agriculture was in the years after the 2007 ConAgra Peter Pan Peanut Butter outbreak?  What more could have been done to prevent 700 illnesses and nine deaths?  What more could have been done to prevent over $1B in losses by business?  Perhaps Stewart Parnell would have told Larry King?

It was then with some surprise that I got a call from the same King producer to come on the show to talk E. coli and hamburger.

As reported by Food Safety News, in October 2009, The Larry King Show on CNN last night cast a pretty wide net in focusing on both food safety and whether or not people are better off not eating meat.

Nationally known food safety attorney Bill Marler and victims’ advocates led off the one-hour program, but host Larry King, who had trouble pronouncing “E. coli outbreak,” was clearly more interested in hearing from his guests who sparred over whether a meat or vegan diet is best.

Before all that began, Marler did update viewers on the condition of 22-year-old Stephanie Smith, the Cold Spring, MN dance instructor who two years ago ate a hamburger from meat-giant Cargill Inc. and suffered devastating effects.  Her story in the New York Times on Oct. 4th clearly captured King’s attention.

“She just entered into a rehab center today,” Marler told the CNN audience.  “The kid wants to dance again.  I think it is pretty unlikely, but she is going to give it a shot.  She will be in there for six months.  They are going to work hard physical therapy, occupational therapy, but she has a long road to hoe.  She has risk of kidney failure, she suffered brain damage, and whether she will walk again is another thing.”

After listening to some of the stories from the families of victims from the Center for Foodborne Illness Research & Prevention, King was surprised to learn that E. coli O157:H7 can be transmitted person-to-person, rather than just from consumption of a contaminated food product.

“Wait a minute, this can be contagious?  You do not have to eat the meat?” King asked.

“Ten to 50 of these bacteria are enough to kill a child,” Marler explained how secondary transmission happens.  “Thousands could fit on the head of a pin.  You cannot see them, taste them or smell them.”  He also explained why E. coli is more prevalent in ground beef than in whole cuts.

But, what was likely most remembered:

A few months (August 2010), later King’s producer called again.

KING: Over half a billion eggs have been recalled over the past two weeks. Contaminated eggs. A major danger problem linked to farms in Iowa. And over 1,000 people have gotten sick. Here to talk about it, Bill Marler. He’s food-borne illness attorney representing cases from this Salmonella outbreak.

KING: Bill, if the fault is in the cooker, why is the industry to blame?

BILL MARLER, ATTORNEY: Well, it’s a little bit more complex than what the doctor explained. I mean, there’s a lot of risk about cross contamination. You know, when you crack an egg, are you going to wear gloves? You know, what if it gets on the counter? What if your 2-year-old touches the counter?

And the other issue too is that the vast majority of these particular cases in this outbreak have been linked to restaurant egg consumption. So, its people going out to their diners, it’s going with their families, and getting sick from eggs that are being cooked in restaurants.

KING: Bill, is it true that there’s a bill in Congress that the FDA, if passed, could clamp down on things that David just described?

MARLER: Well, whether or not the FDA would clamp down on that is I think to be seen. Clearly, the FDA does not have the sort of authority that it needs to protect the U.S. consumers, both from factory farms and other farms that are producing contaminated products. In 20 years of litigating these cases, the vast majority of the factories, the vast majority of the manufacturing facilities that have poisoned people, most of them had not been inspected by the FDA for years before the outbreak happened.

Larry, you remember the infamous peanut butter outbreak of just last year. You know, that sickened 700 and killed nine people. The FDA had not been in that facility for years. It’s a resource issue.

KING: Bill, we have a statement from Wright County Egg, and I’ll read that to you. “Wright County Egg recognizes the significant consumer concern about the potential incidents of salmonella. That’s why we continue to work cooperatively with the FDA following our voluntary egg recall of shell eggs. This measure is consistent with our commitment to egg safety and it is our responsibility.” Bill, does that satisfy you?

MARLER: Well, that’s good to see that they hired a good PR firm, but the reality is that this outbreak started in the end of May, continued all of the way through August. There was a systemic salmonella problem in that plant. Whether it was from feed or cross contamination between one bird to another, the reality is that well over 1,000 people are confirmed ill by the CDC. The CDC will also tell you that for every one person they confirm — and they’ve confirmed 1,300 thus far — for everyone person they confirm, they don’t count 38.

So, this problem is far larger than I think we realize. And the outbreak was going on for months and the reality is that there was a systemic problem in that plant that, you know, caused a half a billion eggs to be recalled and likely more in the next week or so.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

KING: Our guests are Bill Marler, David Kirby, and Dr. Raj. let’s take a call. Lake Charles, Louisiana, Hello. Sorry. San Francisco. Hello. Lake Charles, you’re next. San Francisco go ahead.

KING: Bill, understanding it’s only been in eggs since the ’80s, right?

MARLER: Salmonella Eriditis (ph), which is the bacteria that we’re seeing now, has really started showing up in the eggs in the ’70s. Most egg companies, large and small, have done a pretty good job of lowering the percentage of contaminated eggs. I agree with the doctor. It’s something you have to be concerned about. One in every 20,000 eggs is presumed to be contaminated.

But what you have here in this particular outbreak is a lot of eggs contaminated to sicken this many thousands of people. So there really was a problem in this particular plant that’s even far beyond what you would normally expect.

KING: Bill, what is the egg rule?

MARLER: The egg rule is a set of guidelines that really sort of came about from Pennsylvania nearly two decades ago, when they were trying to get a handle on the salmonella in their flocks. It was talked about during the Clinton administration, and it was about to go into effect. The Bush administration put a hold on it. It came into effect just in July of this year, after being pushed by this administration.

The reality is that they’re really guidelines to try to tamp down the volume of salmonella in the flocks, whether they are small or large. The egg rule goes into effect to farms that have 50,000 or more chickens as of July of this year; 3,000 to 50,000 go into effect two years from now. So, they’re really just a set of common-sense guidelines of checking and testing that at least help give consumers a sense that the eggs that they’re feeding their kids are as safe as they can be.

KING: Another question from Twitter. “We buy free range organic eggs. Are those safe,” David?

KIRBY: Not necessarily. I wish I could say they were. Most studies show that they are less likely to carry disease than factory farmed eggs. With these eggs, in a small sustainable farm, even if you have an outbreak of salmonella, you’re going to have what, a few hundred eggs that are infected. Not half a billion. It’s the scale that’s as much of a problem.

And also, it’s the feed and the quality of the feed and what goes into the feed. We know that we are what we eat. We forget that we’re also what we eat eats. And I think the American people need to wake up and be much more aware of what goes into chicken feed. You know, the chickens that we eat, the chickens that we grow for food, for meat, are often fed arsenic to make them grow faster and prevent disease. We don’t typically give arsenic to egg laying hens. But it just goes to show the quality of the feed results in quality of the food. I think Americans need to know more. And I think the FDA needs to do better regulation.

KING: What’s it like to contract salmonella and survive? A woman’s frightening story next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

KING: Joining us on the phone is Barb Pruitt. Barb is a victim of salmonella. Salmonella can cause serious injury and even death. About 400 people in the United States every year die from salmonella. You got it from lettuce, Barb?

BARB PRUITT, SALMONELLA SURVIVOR: Yes, I do. I had eaten lettuce and it completely changed my life.

KING: How so? What happened?

PRUITT: In the beginning, I started to just feel ill and thought I had a really bad flu. But several days later I knew it was much worse than that. It eventually led to me going to the hospital out of desperation, and I became septic and experienced tachycardia, and then I was flown out of my hometown to a bigger town, and they found out my intestines were necrotic. They removed several feet of my intestines. It’s quite an ordeal to experience salmonella.

KING: How do you know it was lettuce?

PRUITT: Well, my lawyer Bill Marler and I believe that the illness was linked to a nationwide outbreak last year from lettuce.

KING: So, you filed a lawsuit?

PRUITT: We are pursuing that.

KING: What do you make of this egg controversy?

PRUITT: I’m not eating no eggs. I can tell you that. It’s — salmonella is just amazing, unless you really experience it or you’re really aware it — the bad part about consumers is you purchase something in good faith and even though it is tainted, you can’t smell it or feel it. You have no idea of knowing that it contains something harmful that you’re going to eat.

And salmonella is nothing to mess with. Any food borne illness can really mess your body up.

KING: What was the first sign you had something was wrong?

PRUITT: It was about three days after I had eaten the lettuce that I knew I was in trouble. I was hoping it was the flu. I tried to stick it out at home for a few more days. By then I knew something was seriously wrong with me. You just know. Your body just reacts very strangely.

KING: Congratulations on living. Barb Pruitt with us on the phone, past salmonella victim. Dr. Raj, why would they have to take out the intestine?

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

KING: Get another call in for the panel. St. Louis, hello.

CALLER: Yes, my question is will there be compensation for the families that get sick? We’ve been fighting this for three weeks and four doctor visits for the last three weeks.

KING: You’re asking a legal question, sir?

CALLER: Yes.

KING: Bill, you are handling this. Who are you representing?

MARLER: I’m representing about 35 families throughout the United States. We filed two lawsuits, one in Wisconsin, and one in Iowa federal court. And we’ll seek — we’re seeking compensation for the victims for medical expenses and lost wages. But really the most important thing is, we now have subpoena power, and we have the ability to get documents from this company and ask some of the very tough questions of the regulators as to what they were doing over the last four months in that facility.

KING: Should this man from St. Louis contact an attorney right away?

MARLER: If they are a culture positive case, and the CDC has confirmed it, they are linked to this outbreak and they should contact a lawyer if they so choose.

Mr. King will be missed. And, I did get some backyard chickens as a result.

A documentary based on Jeff Benedict’s 2013 bestseller “Poisoned” has officially been announced.

The 2011 book, Poisoned: The True Story of the Deadly E. coli Outbreak that Changed the Way Americans Eat, chronicles a deadly 1993 Jack in the Box E. coli outbreak and the rise of Bill Marler as a food safety attorney.

The documentary is being executive produced by award-winning author and journalist Jeff Benedict. Benedict is joining forces with Ross Dinerstein’s Campfire — know for Jiro Dreams of Sushi and HBO Max’s Heaven’s Gate — as well as filmmaker Stephanie Soechtig and her banner Atlas Films — Fed Up; The Devil We Know — for the documentary, which carries the same name as the book.

The documentary will chronicle the evolution and history of America’s food supply system, as well as the untold stories from the victims of notorious outbreaks and spotlighting high-profile criminal prosecutions for those responsible.

“Poisoned” will go directly to the source, following the distribution trail from start to finish, examining where the process breaks down, as well as the bureaucratic red tape and collusion among lobbyists and lawmakers that works against addressing this life-or-death problem.

The documentary makers are promoting the project as an all-encompassing, infuriating, and at times even humorous roller-coaster ride that seeks to ask the question: “How did we get to a place with 15 government agencies in charge of the country’s food, yet none of them can keep its citizens safe?”

The film will be directed by Soechtig. Dinerstein serves as producer alongside Soechtig and Atlas Films’ Kristin Lazure. Benedict and Campfire’s Ross Girard and Rebecca Evans are executive producers.

About Campfire
Founded in 2014 and headed by producer and CEO Ross Dinerstein, Campfire is a production company known for its broad bench of content. scripted and unscripted, for feature film and TV/streaming platforms. Part of Wheelhouse Entertainment, Campfire’s projects include docuseries Heaven’s Gate: The Cult of Cults for HBO Max; Hulu’s upcoming WeWork feature documentary; FX’s first true crime docuseries The Most Dangerous Animal of All; Netflix’s true-crime documentary series John Grisham’s The Innocent Man; and Netflix’s Emmy-nominated, scripted series Special.

Thank you www.barfblog.com

As far back as September 1998, FDA issued a warning against sprouts urging:

Children, pregnant women and the elderly should not eat alfalfa sprouts until growers find a way to reduce the risk of a potentially deadly bacteria that infects some sprouts, the Food and Drug Administration said this week. The FDA, which is investigating sprout industry practices, said children, the elderly and people with weakened immune systems should avoid eating sprouts. The agency’s statement, issued Monday, repeated similar but little-noticed advice the U.S. Centers for Disease Control gave to doctors and researchers a year ago.

Here is the CDC warning :

Sprouts Not Healthy Food for Everyone

Children, the elderly, and persons whose immune systems are not functioning well should not eat raw sprouts, because current treatments of seeds and sprouts cannot get rid of all bacteria present. Persons who are at high risk for complications from foodborne illness should probably not eat raw sprouts, according to an article in the current issue of Emerging Infectious Diseases, CDC’s peer-reviewed journal, which tracks new and reemerging infectious diseases worldwide. Although sprouts are often considered a “health food,” the warm, humid conditions needed for growing sprouts from seeds are also ideal for bacteria to flourish. Salmonella, E. coli, and other bacteria can grow to high levels without affecting the appearance of the sprouts. Researchers have treated both seeds and sprouts with heat or washed them in solutions of chlorine, alcohol, and other chemicals. Some of these disinfectants reduced the levels of bacteria, but a potential hazard remained, especially for persons with weak immune systems. High temperatures that would kill the bacteria on the seeds would also keep them from sprouting. Until an effective way is found to prevent illness from sprouts, they should be eaten with caution, if at all.

I think it is time for a warning label — past time.

Foodborne Illness Outbreaks Associated with Sprouts
Date Causative Agent Illnesses Reported Source Country of Outbreak
Jan  2020 – Mar 2020 E. coli O103 51 Clover sprouts Multistate, U.S.: https://www.cdc.gov/ecoli/2020/o103h2-02-20/index.html
Nov  2019 – Dec 2019 E. coli O103 22 Clover sprouts Iowa, U.S.: https://www.fda.gov/inspections-compliance-enforcement-and-criminal-investigations/warning-letters/jimmy-johns-franchise-llc-599962-02212020
Dec  2017-Jan 2018 SalmonellaMontevideo 10 Sprouts Multistate, U.S.: https://www.cdc.gov/salmonella/montevideo-01-18/index.html
May-July 2016 Salmonella 30 Alfalfa sprouts Multistate, U.S.: http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2016/08/fresh-sprouts-from-denver-linked-to-9-state-outbreak/#.WXeKjBTZqf4
Apr. 2016 SalmonellaSaintpaul 244 Mung bean sprouts Australia.: http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/south-australia/extra-five-cases-in-sa-for-bean-sprout-contamination/news-story/a3579929ba487a9acbcfaa46b58afcb7
 Jan. 2016 E. coli O157 11 Alfalfa sprouts Jack & The Green Sprouts (Wisconsin) Minnesota, U.S.: https://www.cdc.gov/ecoli/2016/o157-02-16/index.html
Nov. 2015- Jan. 2016 SalmonellaMuenchen  13 Alfalfa sprouts from Sweetwater Farms (Kansas) Multistate, U.S.: http://www.cdc.gov/salmonella/enteritidis-11-14/; http://www.fda.gov/Food/RecallsOutbreaksEmergencies/Outbreaks/ucm424426.htm
Sep. 2014 SalmonllaEnteriditis 115 Bean sprouts produced by Wonton Foods Multistate, U.S.: http://www.cdc.gov/salmonella/enteritidis-11-14/; http://www.fda.gov/Food/RecallsOutbreaksEmergencies/Outbreaks/ucm424426.htm
Jun.-Aug. 2014 Listeria monocytogenes 5 Mung brean sprouts produced by Wholesome Soy Products Illinois and Michigan, U.S.: http://www.cdc.gov/listeria/outbreaks/bean-sprouts-11-14/index.html; http://www.fda.gov/Food/RecallsOutbreaksEmergencies/Outbreaks/ucm422562.htm
May. 2014 E. coli O121 19 Raw clover sprouts produced by Evergreen Fresh Sprouts, LLC of Idaho are likely source Washington and Idaho, U.S.: http://www.cdc.gov/ecoli/2014/o121-05-14/index.html; http://www.doh.wa.gov/Newsroom/2014NewsReleases/14070CloverSproutsSourceofEColiOutbreak
Jul. 2012 SalmonellaCubana 19 Sprouts, unspecified Multistate, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Mar. 2012 Listeria monocytogenes 6 Sprouts, unspecified Multistate, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Dec. 2011-Feb. 2012 E. coli O26 29 Raw clover sprouts at Jimmy John’s restaurants is the likely cause of this outbreak Multistate, U.S.: http://www.cdc.gov/ecoli/2012/O26-02-12/index.html; http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Aug. 2011 SalmonellaAgona 7 Sprouts, unspecified Kansas, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Apr.-Jul. 2011 SalmonellaEnteritidis 27 Alfalfa sprouts and spicy sprout produced by Evergreen Fresh Sprouts, LLC Idaho, Montana, North Dakota, New Jersey and Washington, U.S.: http://www.cdc.gov/salmonella/sprouts-enteritidis0611/070611/index.html;  http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
May-Jul. 2011 E. coli O104:H4 4,075
Bean sprouts Europe, Canada and U.S.: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6250a3.htm; Buchholz, U., Bernard, H., Werber, D., Böhmer, M. M., Remschmidt, C., Wilking, H., … & Kühne, M. (2011). German outbreak of Escherichia coli O104: H4 associated with sprouts. New England Journal of Medicine, 365(19), 1763-1770. https://www-s.med.illinois.edu/m2/epidemiology/LiteratureCritique/pdf/Buchholz_2011.pdf
Apr. 2011 SalmonellaMuenchen 7 Clover sprouts Michigan, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Dec. 2010-Jan. 2011 SalmonellaNewport 9 Clover sprouts produced by Sprouters Northwest, Inc., of Kent, WA Oregon and Washington, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx;http://www.doh.wa.gov/Portals/1/Documents/1500/NewsReleases/2011/11-001CloverSproutsRecall.pdf
Dec. 2010 SalmonellaCubana 3 Alfalfa sprouts Multistate, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx 
Nov. 2010-
Feb. 2011
Salmonellaserotype I 4,[5],12:i:- 140 Alfalfa sprouts Multistate, U.S.: http://www.cdc.gov/salmonella/i4512i-/021011/index.html; http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Aug.-Oct. 2010 SalmonellaBareilly 190 Bean sprouts U.K.:
http://www.hpa.org.uk:80/webw/HPAweb&HPAwebStandard/HPAweb_C/1287143210927?p=1259152466069
Mar.-Jun. 2010 SalmonellaNewport 44 Alfalfa sprouts produced by J.H. Caldwell and Sons Inc. of Maywood, CA Multistate, U.S.: http://www.cdc.gov/salmonella/newport/; http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Feb. 2010 unknown 4 Sprouts, unspecified Colorado, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Aug. 2009 SalmonellaTyphimurium 14 Alfalfa sprouts Michigan, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Jun. 2009 SalmonellaBovismorbificans 42 Ready-to-eat alfalfa sprouts Finland: Rimhanen-Finne, R., Niskanen, T., Lienemann, T., Johansson, T., Sjöman, M., Korhonen, T., Guedes, S., Kuronen, H., Virtanen, M. J., Mäkinen, J., Jokinen, J., Siitonen, A. and Kuusi, M. (2011), A Nationwide Outbreak of Salmonella Bovismorbificans Associated with Sprouted Alfalfa Seeds in Finland, 2009. Zoonoses and Public Health, 58: 589–596. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1863-2378.2011.01408.x/abstract
Apr.-Jul. 2009 SalmonellaCubana 14 Onion sprouts and mixed onion/alfalfa sprout Canada:http://www.bccdc.ca/resourcematerials/newsandalerts/healthalerts/2009HealthAlerts/SalmonellaCubanaOutbreak_aug24.htm
Apr. 2009 SalmonellaCubana 2 Sprouts, unspecified Minnesota, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Feb.-May. 2009 Salmonella Saintpaul 256 Raw alfalfa sprouts Multistate, U.S.: http://www.cdc.gov/salmonella/saintpaul/alfalfa/; http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5818a4.htm
Feb. 2009 SalmonellaOranienberg 25 Alfalfa sprouts Multistate, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Sep. 2008 E. coli O157:NM 21 Alfalfa sprouts; iceberg lettuc, unspecified Colorado, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Jul. 2008 SalmonellaTyphimurium 24 Alfalfa sprouts Multistate, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/default.aspx; http://www.fda.gov/safety/recalls/archiverecalls/2008/ucm112494.htm
Mar. 2008 Listeria monocytogenes 20 Sprouts, unspecified Multistate, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Jul.-Oct. 2007 SalmonellaWeltevreden 45 Alfalfa sprouts Denmark, Norway and Finland: Emberland KE, Ethelberg S, Kuusi M, Vold L, Jensvoll L, Lindstedt BA, Nygård K, Kjelsø C, Torpdahl M, Sørensen G, Jensen T, Lukinmaa S, Niskanen T, Kapperud G. Outbreak of Salmonella Weltevreden infections in Norway, Denmark and Finland associated with alfalfa sprouts, July-October 2007. Euro Surveill. 2007;12(48):pii=3321. Available online: http://www.eurosurveillance.org/ViewArticle.aspx?ArticleId=3321 
Jul.-Aug. 2007 SalmonellaStanley 44 Alfalfa sprouts Sweden: Werner S, Boman K, Einemo I, Erntell M, de Jong B, Lindqvist A, Löfdahl M, Löfdahl S, Meeuwisse A, Ohlen G, Olsson M, Stamer U, Sellström E, Andersson Y. Outbreak of Salmonella Stanley in Sweden associated with alfalfa sprouts, July-August 2007. Euro Surveill. 2007;12(42):pii=3291. Available online: http://www.eurosurveillance.org/ViewArticle.aspx?ArticleId=3291 
Apr. 2007 SalmonellaMbandaka 15 Alfalfa sprouts Multistate, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Feb. 2006 SalmonellaBraenderup 4 Bean sprouts Multistate, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Nov. 2005 SalmonellaOranienberg 125 Alfalfa sprouts Australia: http://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Content/cda-cdi3003b.htm
Nov. 2005 SalmonellaBraenderup 2 Mung sprouts Massachusetts, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Oct.-Dec. 2005 Salmonella spp. 648 Mung sprouts Canada: http://news.ontario.ca/archive/en/2005/12/14/Update-on-Salmonella-Outbreak.html; Outbreak of Salmonella entertidis phage type 13 associated with mung bean sprouts in Ontario, 2005. Outbreak Investigation. May 17. 2006. http://www.sproutnet.com/pdfs/Toronto-Mung-2005.pdf
Apr. 2004 E. coli O157:NM 2 Alfalfa sprouts Georgia, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Apr. 2004 SalmonellaBovismorbificans 35 Raw alfalfa sprouts produced by Sprouters Northwest, Inc., of Kent, WA Oregon and Washington, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx; http://www.fda.gov/NewsEvents/Newsroom/PressAnnouncements/2004/ucm108307.htm
Nov. 2003 SalmonellaChester 26 Alfalfa sprouts Multistate, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Jul. 2003 E. coli O157:NM 13 Alfalfa sprouts Colorado, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx; D. D. Ferguson, J. Scheftel, A. Cronquist, K. Smith, A. Woo-Ming, E. Anderson J. Knutsen, A. K. De and K. Gershman (2005). Temporally distinct Escherichia coli O157 outbreaks associated with alfalfa sprouts linked to a common seed source – Colorado and Minnesota, 2003. Epidemiology and Infection, 133, pp 439-447. http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0950268804003589
Feb. 2003 SalmonellaSaintpaul 16 Alfalfa sprouts Multistate, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Feb. 2003 E. coli O157:H7 7 Alfalfa sprouts Minnesota, U.S.: D. D. Ferguson, J. Scheftel, A. Cronquist, K. Smith, A. Woo-Ming, E. Anderson J. Knutsen, A. K. De and K. Gershman (2005). Temporally distinct Escherichia coli O157 outbreaks associated with alfalfa sprouts linked to a common seed source – Colorado and Minnesota, 2003. Epidemiology and Infection, 133, pp 439-447. http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0950268804003589
Jan. 2003 E. coli O157:H7 20 Alfalfa sprouts Multistate, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Jul. 2002 E. coli O157:H7 5 Alfalfa sprouts California, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Apr. 2001 SalmonellaEntertidis 35 Mung sprouts Florida, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Feb. 2001 SalmonellaKottbus 32 Alfalfa sprouts Multistate, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Jan. 2001 SalmonellaEntertidis 22 Mung sprouts Hawaii, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Feb.-Mar. 2001 SalmonellaEnteritidis 84 Mung sprouts Canada: Honish, L., & Nguyen, Q. (2001). Outbreak of Salmonella enteritidis phage type 913 gastroenteritis associated with mung bean sprouts–Edmonton, 2001. Canada communicable disease report= Relevé des maladies transmissibles au Canada, 27(18), 151. http://www.sproutnet.com/Outbreak-of-Salmonella-in-Canada
Oct. 2001 unknown 2 Alfalfa sprouts Florida, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Nov. 2000 S. Enteritidis phage type 4b 12 Bean sprouts Netherlands: van Duynhoven, Y. T., Widdowson, M. A., de Jager, C. M., Fernandes, T., Neppelenbroek, S., van den Brandhof, W., … & van Pelt, W. (2002). Salmonella enterica serotype Enteritidis phage type 4b outbreak associated with bean sprouts. Emerging infectious diseases, 8(4), 440. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2730240/
May. 2000 Salmonella enterica 3 Alfalfa spouts (suspected) Florida, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
2000 SalmonellaEnteritidis 75 Mung sprouts Multistate, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Apr.-Jun. 2000 SalmonellaEnteritidis 12 Mung sprouts Canada: Harb, J., Isaacs, S., Fyfe, M., Crowe, L., Slater, B., Ahmed, R., … & Hockin, J. (2003). Outbreak of Salmonella enteritidis phage type 11B in the provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan, June 2000. Canada communicable disease report= Relevé des maladies transmissibles au Canada, 29(14), 125. http://www.sproutnet.com/Outbreak-of-Salmonella-Enteritidis
Aug.-Sep. 1999 SalmonllaMuenchen 157 Alfalfa sprouts Multistate, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx; Proctor, M. E., Hamacher, M., Tortorello, M. L., Archer, J. R., & Davis, J. P. (2001). Multistate outbreak of Salmonella serovar Muenchen infections associated with alfalfa sprouts grown from seeds pretreated with calcium hypochlorite. Journal of clinical microbiology, 39(10), 3461-3465.
May. 1999 SalmonellaSaintpaul 36 Clover sprouts California, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Jan. 1999 SalmonellaMbandaka 83 Alfalfa sprouts Multistate, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx; Gill, C. J., Keene, W. E., Mohle-Boetani, J. C., Farrar, J. A., Waller, P. L., Hahn, C. G., & Cieslak, P. R. (2003). Alfalfa seed decontamination in Salmonella outbreak. Emerging infectious diseases, 9(4), 474. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2957971/
Jan. 1999 SalmonellaTyphimurium 112 Clover sprouts Colorado, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx; Brooks, J. T., Rowe, S. Y., Shillam, P., Heltzel, D. M., Hunter, S. B., Slutsker, L., … & Luby, S. P. (2001). Salmonella Typhimurium infections transmitted by chlorine-pretreated clover sprout seeds. American journal of epidemiology, 154(11), 1020-1028. http://aje.oxfordjournals.org/content/154/11/1020.short
Aug.-Sep. 1999 S. paratyphi B var java 51 Alfalfa sprouts Canada: Stratton, J., Stefaniw, L., Grimsrud, K., Werker, D. H., Ellis, A., Ashton, E., … & Jensen, B. (2001). Outbreak of Salmonella paratyphi B var java due to contaminated alfalfa sprouts in Alberta, British Columbia and Saskatchewan. Canada communicable disease report= Relevé des maladies transmissibles au Canada, 27(16), 133. http://www.sproutnet.com/Outbreak-of-Salmonella-Paratyphi
Jun. 1998 E. coli O157:NM 8 Alfalfa sprouts California, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
May. 1998 SalmonellaHavana and Cubana 40 Alfalfa sprouts (Havana suspected) Multistate, U.S.: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/foodborneoutbreaks/Default.aspx
Jun.-Jul. 1997 E. coli O157:H7 82 Alfalfa sprouts Michigan and Virginia, U.S.: Breuer, T., Benkel, D. H., Shapiro, R. L., Hall, W. N., Winnett, M. M., Linn, M. J., … & Team, I. (2001). A multistate outbreak of Escherichia coli O157: H7 infections linked to alfalfa sprouts grown from contaminated seeds. Emerging infectious diseases, 7(6), 977. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2631892/pdf/11747724.pdf; http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/00048994.htm
1997 Salmonella Infantis
and Anatum
109 Alfalfa sprouts Kansas and Missouri, U.S.: Taormina, P. J., Beuchat, L. R., & Slutsker, L. (1999). Infections associated with eating seed sprouts: an international concern. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 5(5), 626. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2627711/pdf/10511518.pdf; Glynn, M. K., Patrick, S., & Wuhib, T. (1998, April). When health food isn’t so healthy—an outbreak of Salmonella serotypes Anatum and Infantis associated with eating contaminated sprouts, Kansas and Missouri, 1997. In 47th Annual Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) Conference. Atlanta, GA: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Sep. 1997-Jul. 1998 SalmonellaSenftenberg 60 Alfalfa sprouts California and Nevada, U.S.: Mohle-Boetani, J. C., Farrar, J. A., Werner, S. B., Minassian, D., Bryant, R., Abbott, S., … & Vugia, D. J. (2001). Escherichia coli O157 and Salmonella infections associated with sprouts in California, 1996–1998. Annals of Internal Medicine, 135(4), 239-247. http://annals.org/article.aspx?articleid=714688
1997 SalmonellaMeleagridis 78 Alfalfa sprouts Canada: Taormina, P. J., Beuchat, L. R., & Slutsker, L. (1999). Infections associated with eating seed sprouts: an international concern. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 5(5), 626. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2627711/pdf/10511518.pdf
1997 E. coli O157:H7 126 Radish sprouts Japan: Taormina, P. J., Beuchat, L. R., & Slutsker, L. (1999). Infections associated with eating seed sprouts: an international concern. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 5(5), 626. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2627711/pdf/10511518.pdf; Gutierrez, E. (1997). Japan prepares as 0157 strikes again. The Lancet, 349(9059), 1156.
May.-Jul. 1996  Salmonella Meleagridis and Montevideo 500 Alfalfa and clover sprouts California and Nevada, U.S.: Mohle-Boetani, J. C., Farrar, J. A., Werner, S. B., Minassian, D., Bryant, R., Abbott, S., … & Vugia, D. J. (2001). Escherichia coli O157 and Salmonella infections associated with sprouts in California, 1996–1998. Annals of Internal Medicine, 135(4), 239-247. http://annals.org/article.aspx?articleid=714688
1996 E. coli O157:H7 6,000 Radish sprouts Japan: Watanabe, Y., Ozasa, K., Mermin, J. H., Griffin, P. M., Masuda, K., Imashuku, S., & Sawada, T. (1999). Factory outbreak of Escherichia coli O157: H7 infection in Japan. Emerging infectious diseases, 5(3), 424. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2640759/pdf/10341179.pdf
1995-1996 SalmonellaNewport 133 Alfalfa sprouts U.S., Canada and Denmark: Taormina, P. J., Beuchat, L. R., & Slutsker, L. (1999). Infections associated with eating seed sprouts: an international concern. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 5(5), 626. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2627711/pdf/10511518.pdf. Van Beneden, C. A., Keene, W. E., Strang, R. A., Werker, D. H., King, A. S., Mahon, B., … & Fleming, D. (1999). Multinational outbreak of Salmonella enterica serotype Newport infections due to contaminated alfalfa sprouts. Jama, 281(2), 158-162.; Wegener HC, Baggesen DL, Neimann J, Nielsen SV. An outbreak of human salmonellosis in Denmark caused by alfalfa sprouts. In: Proceedings and abstracts of the International Symposium on Salmonella and Salmonellosis; Ploufragan, France; May 20-22, 1997:587-589.
1995 SalmonellaStanley 242 Alfalfa sprouts Finland and U.S.: Mahon, B. E., Pönkä, A., Hall, W. N., Komatsu, K., Dietrich, S. E., Siitonen, A., … & Slutsker, L. (1997). An international outbreak of Salmonella infections caused by alfalfa sprouts grown from contaminated seeds. Journal of Infectious Diseases, 175(4), 876-882. http://jid.oxfordjournals.org/content/175/4/876.full.pdf?origin=publication_detail
1994 SalmonellaNewport 154 Alfalfa sprouts Denmark: WHO Surveillance Programe for Control of Foodborne Infections and Intoxications in Europe, 7th Report: Denmark 1993-1998. http://www.bfr.bund.de/internet/7threport/CRs/den.pdf
1994 SalmonellaBovismorbificans 595 Australian alfalfa sprouts seed Sweden and Finland: Taormina, P. J., Beuchat, L. R., & Slutsker, L. (1999). Infections associated with eating seed sprouts: an international concern. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 5(5), 626. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2627711/pdf/10511518.pdf; Puohiniemi, R., Heiskanen, T., & Siitonen, A. (1997). Molecular epidemiology of two international sprout-borne Salmonella outbreaks. Journal of clinical microbiology, 35(10), 2487-2491. http://jcm.asm.org/content/35/10/2487.full.pdf; Pönkä, A., Andersson, Y., Siitonen, A., de Jong, B., Jahkola, M., Haikala, O., … & Pakkala, P. (1995). Salmonella in alfalfa sprouts. The Lancet, 345(8947), 462-463.
Oct. 1990 SalmonellaAnatum 15 Alfalfa sprouts Washington, U.S.: http://www.cdc.gov/outbreaknet/pdf/surveillance/1990_linelist.pdf
Oct. 1990 unknown 32 Alfalfa sprouts, cucumber, lettuce Washington, U.S.: http://www.cdc.gov/outbreaknet/pdf/surveillance/1990_linelist.pdf
1989 Salmonella Goldcoast 31 Cress sprouts U.K.: Taormina, P. J., Beuchat, L. R., & Slutsker, L. (1999). Infections associated with eating seed sprouts: an international concern. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 5(5), 626. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2627711/pdf/10511518.pdf; Joce, R., O’Sullivan, D. G., Strong, C., Rowe, B., Hall, M. L. M., & Threlfall, E. J. (1990). A national outbreak of Salmonella Gold-Coast. Commun Dis Rep CDR Rev, 4, 3-4.
1988 Salmonella Saintpaul and Virchow PT34(7cases) 143 Mung sprouts U.K.: O’mahony, M., Cowden, J., Smyth, B., Lynch, D., Hall, M., Rowe, B., … & Bartlett, C. L. R. (1990). An outbreak of Salmonella saint-paul infection associated with beansprouts. Epidemiology and infection, 104(02), 229-235. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2271762/pdf/epidinfect00020-0070.pdf
1973 Bacillus cereus 4 Soy, cress, mustard sprouts U.S.: Portnoy, B. L., Goepfert, J. M., & Harmon, S. M. (1976). An outbreak of Bacillus cereus food poisoning resulting from contaminated vegetable sprouts. American journal of epidemiology, 103(6), 589-594.