Over the course of the last several months, I have periodically reviewed major Salmonella outbreaks that have occurred at various restaurants, and from other food sources, over the first 2/3 of 2010. Obviously, this fourth installment is heavy on the eggs. No matter how you cook it up, 2010 has been a year dominated by Salmonella contamination, a bacteria that the CDC estimates causes about 30,000 illnesses nationally . . . even in a normal year.
Here are a list of twelve major outbreaks that do not appear to have any association with the current egg salmonella outbreak:
1. ConAgra’s Marie Calendar’s brand Cheesy Chicken and Rice frozen entrees
2. Skokie Country Club Outbreak
3. Caldwell Fresh Foods Sprouts Outbreak
5. Casa Lopez Outbreak in Ohio
7. Subway Outbreak in Illinois
9. Chico "Margarita Mix Off" Outbreak
10. Salmonella spinach and lettuce outbreaks/recalls
11. Salmonella baildon and hartford outbreaks linked to Taco Bell
12. Salmonella Typhi Outbreak linked to Goya frozen mamey fruit
Others receiving votes:
Originally, it was also thought that Salmonella outbreaks had occurred at Bullocks BBQ restaurant in Durham, North Carolina, Baker Street Restaurant and Pub in Kenosha, Wisconsin, and The Fort Restaurant in Morrison, Colorado. Outbreaks surely did happen there, but health authorities have since determined that those clusters of illness were actually sub-outbreaks in the larger Salmonella enteritidis outbreak linked to Wright County Egg and Hillandale Farms, companies that have since recalled over half a billion eggs.
Wright County Egg – Hillandale Farms Salmonella Outbreak:
The CDC updated its case count today in the Salmonella outbreak linked to these two egg companies. Now it counts 2,403 illnesses, from as many as 26 restaurant or other foodservice event outbreaks nationally, that match the strain of Salmonella enteritidis associated with Wright County Egg and Hillandale Farms’ outbreak and recall. The CDC’s summary:
In early July 2010, CDC identified a nationwide sustained increase in the number of Salmonella Enteritidis isolates with PFGE pattern JEGX01.0004 uploaded to PulseNet, the national subtyping network made up of state and local public health laboratories and federal food regulatory laboratories that performs molecular surveillance of foodborne infections. This increase began in May 2010, and is evident in the epidemic curve, or epi curve. From May 1 to August 25, 2010, a total of 2,403 illnesses were reported. However, some cases from this time period have not been reported yet, and some of these cases may not be related to this outbreak. Based on the previous 5 years of reports to PulseNet, we would expect approximately 933 total illnesses during this same period. Many states have reported increases of this pattern since May. Because of the large number of expected cases during this period, standard methods of molecular subtyping alone are not sufficient to determine which reported cases might be outbreak-associated. CDC is currently conducting testing using advanced molecular methodologies to help distinguish between outbreak-related cases and sporadic (or background) cases.
See also: the latest on the FDA’s investigation into the egg outbreak.