AP reported a few moments ago that California Health officials report that Salmonella Enteritidis (SE)-tainted eggs have sickened at least 266 Californians with salmonella, despite a multi-state recall. Seven cases of salmonella were linked to the same recall in Minnesota.

salmonella egg.jpgThe FDA announced that since May 2010, CDC has identified a nationwide, four-fold increase in the number of SE isolates through PulseNet, the national subtyping network made up of state and local public health laboratories and federal food regulatory laboratories. CDC received reports of approximately 200 SE cases every week during late June and early July. Normally, CDC has received an average of some 50 reports of SE illness each week for the past five years. Many states have also reported increases of this pattern since May 2010.

Epidemiologic investigations conducted by public health officials in California, Colorado, and Minnesota have revealed several restaurants or events where more than one person ill with this type of SE has eaten. Preliminary information from these investigations suggests that shell eggs are the likely source of infections in many of these restaurants or events.

The FDA, CDC, and state partners conducted a traceback investigation and found many of these restaurants or events received shell eggs from a single firm, Wright County Egg, in Galt, Iowa.  Eggs from Wright County Egg of Galt, Iowa, were delivered to wholesalers, distribution centers and food service companies in California, Illinois, Missouri, Colorado, Nebraska, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Iowa.

Wright County Egg is reported to be recalling 228 million eggs after being linked to the outbreak.