The Public Health Agency of Canada has reported that two strains of Salmonella have been associated with an outbreak: Salmonella Newport and Salmonella Hartford. In total, 34 cases have been reported in British Columbia (6), Alberta (4), Ontario (22) and Quebec (2). Five cases have been hospitalized; four cases have been discharged and have recovered or are recovering. The status of one case was not provided to the Agency. No deaths have been reported. The investigation is ongoing but currently, 19 of 19 cases that have been interviewed have reported consumption of sprouted chia seeds or sprouted chia seed powder, and 16 of 19 cases specifically report sprouted chia seed powder.
As a part of this investigation, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency has issued a recall for various products containing sprouted chia seeds and sprouted chia seed powder under the brands Organic Traditions, Back 2 the Garden, Intuitive Path SuperFoods, Harmonic Arts Botanical Dispensary, Naturallyorganic, and Pete’s Gluten Free. These products have been recalled and are being removed from the marketplace due to possible Salmonella contamination.
The CDC reports as of June 2, 2014, a total of 17 persons infected with the outbreak strains of Salmonella Newport (12 persons) or Salmonella Hartford (5 persons) have been reported from 10 states. Collaborative investigation efforts of state, local, and federal public health and regulatory agencies indicate that organic sprouted chia powder is the likely source of this outbreak.
On May 28, 2014, Navitas Naturals recalled products that contain organic sprouted chia powder due to possible Salmonella contamination. The recalled products include Navitas Naturals Organic Sprouted Chia Powder, Navitas Naturals Omega Blend Sprouted Smoothie Mix, and Williams-Sonoma Omega 3 Smoothie Mixer with specific “best by” dates. On May 30, 2014, Advantage Health Matters and Back 2 the Garden recalled products that contain sprouted chia seed powder due to possible Salmonella contamination. The recalled products include Organic Traditions Sprouted Chia Seed Powder, Organic Traditions Sprouted Chia and Flax Seed Powder, and Back 2 the Garden Sprouted Chia Seed Powder.