Campylobacter, with poultry as a major source, is still the most commonly identified foodborne illness since FoodNet tracking began in 2013. Also, the incident of Salmonella Enteritidis, the most common Salmonella subtype for which poultry and eggs are often the source, has not declined over the last 10 years. Compared with 2015-2017 levels, incidence significantly increased in 2018 for Cyclospora (399%), Vibrio (109%), Yersinia (58%), STEC E. coli (26%), Campylobacter (12%), and Salmonella (9%).

Not much of a surprise to those who follow my blog.  Looks like biggest culprits are Chicken and Leafy Greens.

The CDC reported today that the incidence of three major foodborne pathogens Campylobacter, Salmonella  Enteritidis  and STEC E. coli has increased in 2018.

The Bug – Campylobacter: Campylobacter continues to be the most commonly identified infection in FoodNet since 2013.

What is the Government and Industry doing about it: Poultry is a major source of Campylobacter. In August 2018, FSIS began using a new testing method; in a study of that method, Campylobacter was isolated from 18% of chicken carcasses and 16% of chicken parts sampled. FSIS currently makes aggregated test results available and intends to update performance standards for Campylobacter contamination.

The Bug – Salmonella:  The incidence of infections with Salmonella Enteritidis has not declined in over 10 years.

What is the Government and Industry doing about it: Salmonella Enteritidis is adapted to live in poultry, and eggs are an important source of infections. By 2012, FDA had implemented the Egg Safety Rule, which requires preventive measures during the production of eggs in poultry houses and requires subsequent refrigeration during storage and transportation, for all farms with ≥3,000 hens. In December 2018, FSIS reported that 22% of establishments that produce chicken parts failed to meet the Salmonella performance standard. The percentage of samples of chicken meat and intestinal contents that yielded Enteritidis were similar in 2018 to those during 2015–2017.

The Bug – E. coli:  STEC E. coli has increased in 2018.

What is the Government and Industry doing about it: Produce is a major source of foodborne illnesses. During 2018, romaine lettuce was linked to two multistate outbreaks of STEC O157 infections. FDA is implementing the Produce Safety Rule, with routine inspections of large produce farms planned this spring. Because produce is a major component of a healthy diet and is often consumed raw, making it safer is important for improving human health.

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