A 17-month Salmonella outbreak linked to Foster Farms chicken has ended after sickening 634 people in 29 states, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). At least 200 people were hospitalized, about 80 of them with severe blood infections.
Four of the seven outbreak strains of Salmonella Heidelberg bacteria were resistant to several antibiotics. Antibiotic-resistant bacteria causes infections that are more severe and more difficult to treat. This outbreak had twice the average hospitalization rate and three times the average rate for blood infections. After symptoms of the initial infection resolve, long-term health effects from salmonellosis such as reactive arthritis, can occur.
The tainted chicken was sold at Costco, Foodmaxx, Kroger, Safeway and other stores under a variety of brand names. A full list of chicken products subject to recall can be accessed here.
The 634 cases were reported from the following states: Alabama (1), Alaska (1), Arkansas (1), Arizona (25), California (490), Colorado (9), Connecticut (1), Delaware (1), Florida (4), Georgia (1), Hawaii (1), Idaho (5), Illinois (4), Kentucky (1), Louisiana (1), Michigan (4), Missouri (5), Montana (1), Nevada (11), New Mexico (2), North Carolina (1), Oregon (17), Puerto Rico (1), Tennessee (1), Texas (13), Utah (6), Virginia (4), Washington (20), West Virginia (1), and Wisconsin (1).
The patients ranged in age from less than 1 year old to 93 years old. The median age was 18. Cases were split equally along gender lines. No deaths have been reported.
If you believe you or a family member was sickened by Foster Farms chicken, contact our attorneys for a free case evaluation. Our lawyers have helped many, many people like you get compensation for Salmonella food poisoning.
Stewart Parnell, former CEO of Peanut Corporation of America (PCA), will be going to trial for selling peanuts tainted with Salmonella bacteria. The tainted peanuts were the source of an outbreak in 2008-09 that killed 9 people and seriously sickened hundreds of others. If convicted on all 76 counts of the indictment, Parnell faces a maximum 754 years in prison and $17 million in fines.
Fox 9 News out of Minneapolis, MN, interviewed Jeff Almer, the son of Shirley Almer, one of the 9 people who died in the outbreak. Attorney Ryan Osterholm, who represented Almer and his family in a wrongful death suit against PCA, was also interviewed.
After over a year of people getting Salmonella food poisoning after eating Foster Farms chicken, the company finally recalled a few products. The recall, not publicized until the July 4 holiday, was issued after the USDA found Salmonella Heidelberg in a package of Foster Farms chicken in the freezer of a person who was diagnosed with a Salmonella Heidelberg infection. The ill person’s family purchased the chicken in April of 2014 and put it in the freezer. Another package of chicken purchased by the family at the same time was opened in May, cooked and eaten by the family member who was later diagnosed with Salmonella.
The DNA of the Salmonella Heidelberg bacteria that sickened this person has the same pattern as one of the Salmonella Heidelberg strains (there are 7) that has sickened over 600 people in 29 states and Puerto Rico: Alabama (2), Alaska (1), Arkansas (1), Arizona (25), California (519), Colorado (9), Connecticut (1), Delaware (1), Florida (4), Georgia (1), Hawaii (1), Idaho (5), Illinois (1), Kentucky (1), Louisiana (1), Michigan (4), Missouri (5), Montana (1), North Carolina (1), Nevada (11), New Mexico (2), Oregon (20), Puerto Rico (1), Tennessee (1), Texas (13), Utah (6), Virginia (4), Washington (23), West Virginia (2), and Wisconsin (1).
Recalled Chicken Products
The July 4, 2014 recall announcement states:
The recalled product includes fresh chicken products sold by retailers under Foster Farms or private label brand names, with varying “use or freeze by”dates ranging from March 16 through March 31, 2014, and frozen Sunland Chicken products with “best by” dates from March 7 through March 11, 2015. The products subject to recall bear the establishment number “P6137,” P6137A” or “P7632” inside the USDA mark of inspection. The chicken products were produced from March 7 through March 13, 2014.
The retailers involved in the outbreak include Costco, Foodmaxx, Kroger, Safeway and others. The products were sold under the following brands: Foster Farms, Foodmaxx, Kroger, Safeway, Valbest and Sunland. A full list of chicken products subject to recall can be accessed here.
“Although this outbreak is over a year old, this is the only recall of potentially contaminated chicken. Chicken processed prior to March of 2014 that has been associated with this outbreak should also be recalled,” said Fred Pritzker, a national food safety lawyer who helps outbreak victims hold food companies accountable for selling food tainted with dangerous pathogens. “It is highly likely that some of this chicken is still in consumers’ freezers.”
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A outbreak of Salmonella infections in the Chicago area has been linked to the deli at the Jewel Osco store in Tinley Park, Illinois. The outbreak investigation points to deli meat tainted with Salmonella bacteria as the probable source of the outbreak. The store is located at 17117 Harlem Ave.
To date, 3 people have confirmed cases of the outbreak strain of Salmonella. At least 6 others have suspected cases, and the Cook County Health Department is awaiting test results.
Attorney Brendan Flaherty is Investigating This Outbreak
Brendan has helped people sickened in numerous outbreaks of Salmonella food poisoning get compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and emotional distress. He is also one of the few attorneys in the U.S. who has won money for families after the wrongful death of a loved one who ate food contaminated with Salmonella.
Three people in Russellville, Alabama have been diagnosed with Salmonella food poisoning, and another 9 people may also be sick. The Alabama State Health Department is awaiting the results of tests, including pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE), to determine who many cases are part of the outbreak.
Assistant State Health Officer Dr. Karen Landers said the department believes the cause could be a single source in Russellville, which all the cases had exposure to. Landers said the confirmed cases appear to have been contracted between June 4 and 5.
Evidence gathered to date points to a restaurant as the source of the contaminated food that caused the outbreak.
Do You Have a Personal Injury Claim against a Restaurant?
If you believe you or a family member was sickened at a restaurant, you can contact our attorneys for a free case evaluation. Our lawyers have helped many, many people like you get compensation for Salmonella food poisoning from restaurant food.