CDC is collaborating with public health officials in multiple states and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to investigate a multistate outbreak of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli O157 (STEC O157) infections.
A total of nine people infected with the outbreak strain of STEC O157 have been reported from two states. The number of ill people identified in each state is as follows: Minnesota (7) and Wisconsin (2).
Illnesses started on dates ranging from January 17, 2016 to February 8, 2016. Ill people range in age from 17 years to 84, with a median age of 28. Sixty-six percent of ill people are female. Two ill people have been hospitalized. No one has developed hemolytic uremic syndrome, a type of kidney failure, and no deaths have been reported.
Collaborative investigative efforts of state, local, and federal public health and regulatory officials indicate that alfalfa sprouts produced by Jack & The Green Sprouts of River Falls, Wisconsin are a likely source of this outbreak. This outbreak does not appear to be related to the ongoing multistate outbreak of Salmonella Muenchen infections linked to alfalfa sprouts produced by Sweetwater Farms of Inman, Kansas.
In interviews, ill people answered questions about the foods they ate and other exposures in the week before they became ill. Of the eight ill people who were interviewed, all eight (100%) reported eating or possibly eating alfalfa sprouts in the week before illness started.
State and local health and regulatory officials performed traceback investigations from seven different locations where ill people ate or bought alfalfa sprouts. These investigations indicated that Jack & The Green Sprouts supplied alfalfa sprouts to all seven locations.