As of May 21 2022, a total of 14 people infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Senftenberg have been reported from 12 states – Arkansas (1), Georgia (2), Illinois (1), Massachusetts (1), Missouri (1), Ohio (1), North Carolina (1), New York (1), South Carolina (1), Texas (2), Virginia (1), and Washington (1).
Illnesses started on dates ranging from February 17, 2022, through May 1, 2022.
Sick people range in age from less than one to 85 years, with a median age of 56, and 71% are female. Of 6 people with information available, 2 have been hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.
The true number of sick people in an outbreak is likely much higher than the number reported, and the outbreak may not be limited to the states with known illnesses. This is because many people recover without medical care and are not tested for Salmonella. In addition, recent illnesses may not yet be reported as it usually takes 2 to 4 weeks to determine if a sick person is part of an outbreak.
State and local public health officials are interviewing people about the foods they ate in the week before they got sick. Of the five people interviewed, five (100%) reported eating peanut butter. Four of five (80%) sick people reported Jif brand peanut butter. Two people reported Jif Creamy Reduced Fat peanut butter, one person reported Jif Natural Creamy Low Sodium peanut butter, and one person reported Jif Natural Creamy peanut butter. This suggests that people in this outbreak got sick from eating peanut butter.
Public health investigators are using the PulseNet system to identify illnesses that may be part of this outbreak. CDC PulseNet manages a national database of DNA fingerprints of bacteria that cause foodborne illnesses. DNA fingerprinting is performed on bacteria using a method called whole genome sequencing (WGS). WGS showed that bacteria from sick people’s samples are closely related genetically. This suggests that people in this outbreak got sick from the same food.
WGS analysis shows that samples from sick people in this investigation are closely related genetically to a sample collected in 2010 from the environment at J.M. Smucker Company’s facility in Lexington, KY, where some Jif brand peanut butter is produced.
Salmonella: Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, is the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of Salmonella outbreaks. The Salmonella lawyers of Marler Clark have represented thousands of victims of Salmonella and other foodborne illness outbreaks and have recovered over $800 million for clients. Marler Clark is the only law firm in the nation with a practice focused exclusively on foodborne illness litigation. Our Salmonella lawyers have litigated Salmonella cases stemming from outbreaks traced to a variety of foods, such as cantaloupe, tomatoes, ground turkey, salami, sprouts, cereal, peanut butter, and food served in restaurants. The law firm has brought Salmonella lawsuits against such companies as Cargill, ConAgra, Peanut Corporation of America, Sheetz, Taco Bell, Subway and Wal-Mart.
If you or a family member became ill with a Salmonella infection, including Reactive Arthritis or Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), after consuming food and you’re interested in pursuing a legal claim, contact the Marler Clark Salmonella attorneys for a free case evaluation.