top10In the United States:

1. Typhoid fever, 1924-25

Oysters from Long Island, NY, held in polluted waters, sickened more than 1,500 people in New York, Chicago, and Washington, D.C.; 150 died.

2. Typhoid fever, 1903

A public water source in Ithaca, NY, was polluted from a dam construction site, resulting in a typhoid outbreak involving 1,350 people; 82 died, including 29 Cornell University students.

3. Streptococcus, 1911

Raw milk delivered door-to-door in the Boston area was responsible for a strep outbreak; 48 people died.

4. Listeria, 2011

“Rocky Ford” cantaloupe from Colorado became contaminated, probably in the packing facility, sickening at least 146 people in 28 states; 33 deaths and one miscarriage. Ten additional deaths were possibly related to the outbreak.

5. Listeria, 1985

Mexican cheese made by a Los Angeles company sickened mostly Hispanic women, many who were pregnant; 28 died.

6. Streptococcus, 1922

Raw milk delivered door-to-door in Portland, OR, was contaminated; 22 died.

7. Listeria, 1998

Ball Park hot dogs and Sara Lee deli meats were recalled after Listeria was found in the Michigan processing plant; 21 died.

8. Botulism, 1919

Canned ripe olives from California sold to inland states were contaminated and caused outbreaks in three states; 19 died.

9. Salmonella Typhimurium, 2008-09

Peanut butter and paste contaminated with S. Typhimurium caused at least 714 illnesses in 46 states; 9 died.

10. Listeria, 2002

Sliced turkey meats from Pilgrim’s Pride were responsible for a multiple state outbreak; 8 died.

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