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Food Poison Journal Food Poisoning Outbreaks and Litigation: Surveillance and Analysis

Botulism Outbreak Reported at Valley Oak Food and Fuel

Screen Shot 2017-05-07 at 11.21.42 AMFive people sickened.

Ellen Garrison of the Sacramento Bee reports today that the Sacramento County Public Health officials are investigating the Valley Oak Food and Fuel gas station in Walnut Grove after several customers who ate prepared food from the station contracted botulism.

A county press release said the department is collaborating with the state Department of Public Health and the county Department of Environmental Management, which has the authority to stop the sale of prepared food at the gas station.

Botulism is a rare and potentially fatal type of food poisoning caused by a bacteria called Clostridium botulinum, according to the Mayo Clinic. Symptoms include double vision, drooping eyelids, difficulty swallowing, slurred speech, dry mouth and muscle weakness. The county is asking that anyone experiencing these symptoms after eating prepared food at the gas station from April 23 through Sunday contact their healthcare provider.

Botulism:  Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, is the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of Botulism outbreaks. The Botulism lawyers of Marler Clark have represented thousands of victims of Botulism and other foodborne illness outbreaks and have recovered over $600 million for clients.  Marler Clark is the only law firm in the nation with a practice focused exclusively on foodborne illness litigation.  Our Botulism lawyers have litigated Botulism cases stemming from outbreaks traced to pesto, carrot juice and chili.

If you or a family member became ill with Botulism after consuming food and you’re interested in pursuing a legal claim, contact the Marler Clark Botulism attorneys for a free case evaluation.

Botulism is a rare but serious paralytic illness caused by a nerve toxin that is produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum.  Clostridium botulinum is the name of a group of bacteria commonly found in soil.  It is an anaerobic, gram-positive, spore-forming rod that produces a potent neurotoxin.  These rod-shaped organisms grow best in low oxygen conditions.  The bacteria form spores, which allow them to survive in a dormant state until exposed to conditions that can support their growth. The organism and its spores are widely distributed in nature. They occur in both cultivated and forest soils, bottom sediments of streams, lakes, and coastal waters, and in the intestinal tracts of fish and mammals, and in the gills and viscera of crabs and other shellfish.

Four types of botulism are recognized: foodborne, infant, wound, and a form of botulism whose classification is as yet undetermined. Foodborne botulism is the name of the disease (actually a foodborne intoxication) caused by the consumption of foods containing the neurotoxin produced by C. botulinum.

Most of the 10 to 30 botulism outbreaks that are reported annually in the United States are associated with inadequately processed, home-canned foods, but occasionally commercially produced foods have been involved in botulism outbreaks. Sausages, meat products, canned vegetables and seafood products have been the most frequent vehicles for human botulism.