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Food Poison Journal

Food Poisoning Outbreaks and Litigation: Surveillance and Analysis

CDC Ups Cyclospora Count to 384 – Cilanto Suspected

cilantroAs of August 3, 2015 (4pm EDT), CDC had been notified of 384 ill persons with confirmed Cyclospora infection from 26 states in 2015.

  • Most (226; 59%) ill persons experienced onset of illness on or after May 1, 2015 and did not report international travel prior to symptom onset.
  • Clusters of illness linked to restaurants or events have been identified in Texas, Wisconsin, and Georgia.
  • Cluster investigations are ongoing in Texas and Georgia.
  • Cluster investigations in Wisconsin and Texas have preliminarily identified cilantro as a suspect vehicle.
  • Investigations are ongoing to identify specific food
    item(s) linked to the cases that are not part of the identified clusters.

Previous U.S. outbreaks of cyclosporiasis have been linked to imported fresh produce, including cilantro from the Puebla region of Mexico. Read the related FDA Import Alert issued July 27, 2015.

A Rated Bali Hai Restaurant in San Diego Link in Possible Foodborne Outbreak

Screen Shot 2015-08-03 at 2.19.30 PMDozens of people attending a banquet at Bali Hai Restaurant on Shelter Island in San Diego harbor last week were reportedly sickened, and health officials have been busy trying to figure out the source.

The event on July 29, sponsored by the San Diego chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, drew 170 people, and 55 of them became ill. A few went to the hospital and one was reportedly taken there Saturday by paramedics.

People who attended the banquet were being asked by officials with the San Diego County Department of Environmental Health to fill out a questionnaire about what they had eaten prior to becoming ill.

The restaurant serves Polynesian cuisine and is a popular wedding and banquet venue.

Marler Clark Hired in Washington Salmonella Outbreak

The outbreak of Salmonella infections that may be linked to pork products has grown to 90 cases in several counties around the state. The ongoing outbreak is under investigation by state, local, and federal public health agencies. Illnesses have been reported from King, Pierce, Yakima, Clark, Thurston, Mason, Kitsap and Grays Harbor Counties.

With the increase in cases, state health officials have asked the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to send a special team to help with the investigation. This team of “disease detectives” will arrive in Washington next week.

Disease investigators are searching for possible exposure sources from farm to table. An apparent link to pork consumption or contamination from raw pork is the strongest lead, though no specific source has yet been found. The likely source of exposure for some of the ill people appears to have been whole roasted pigs, cooked and served at private events.

The cases, many of which are in King County, appear to have been caused by the same rare strain of Salmonella bacteria, health officials said. The outbreak is linked to Salmonella I, 4, 5, 12:i:-, a germ that has been emerging nationally but has never before been seen in Washington state.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is issuing a public health alert due to concerns about illnesses caused by Salmonella that may be associated with pork products, specifically whole pigs used for pig roasts.

FSIS was notified of Salmonella I 4,[5],12:i- illness clusters (groups of illnesses) on July 15, 2015. FSIS suspects that there is a link between the illnesses associated with whole pigs used for pig roasts and eight illness clusters based on information gathered in conjunction with the Washington State Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Case-patients have been identified in Washington with illness onset dates ranging from April 25, 2015 to July 21, 2015.

Salmonella Pork Outbreak in Snohomish, King, Pierce, Yakima, Clark, Thurston, Mason, Kitsap and Grays Harbor Counties

ceeb8cb2-37e7-11e5-99e9-6315a5a2a013-1020x1051The outbreak of Salmonella infections that may be linked to pork products has grown to 90 cases in several counties around the state. The ongoing outbreak is under investigation by state, local, and federal public health agencies.

With the increase in cases, state health officials have asked the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to send a special team to help with the investigation. This team of “disease detectives” will arrive in Washington next week.

Disease investigators are searching for possible exposure sources from farm to table. An apparent link to pork consumption or contamination from raw pork is the strongest lead, though no specific source has yet been found. The likely source of exposure for some of the ill people appears to have been whole roasted pigs, cooked and served at private events.

The cases, many of which are in King County, appear to have been caused by the same rare strain of Salmonella bacteria, health officials said. The outbreak is linked to Salmonella I, 4, 5, 12:i:-, a germ that has been emerging nationally but has never before been seen in Washington state.