An additional 87 ill people from 16 states were included in this investigation since the last update on November 15, 2018. States with newly reported illnesses include: Michigan, Mississippi, and West Virginia.

As of December 12, 2018, 333 people infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Newport have been reported from 28 states.Illnesses started on dates ranging from August 5, 2018 to November 9, 2018.

91 people have been hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.

Epidemiologic, laboratory, and traceback evidence indicates that ground beef produced by JBS Tolleson, Inc. is a likely source of this outbreak.

On October 4, 2018, JBS Tolleson, Inc. recalled approximately 6.9 million pounds of beef products that may be contaminated with Salmonella Newport. On December 4, 2018, JBS Tolleson, Inc. recalled an additional 5.2 million pounds of beef products.

Personally, as I said to the Los Angeles Times some time ago, “I think that anything that can poison or kill a person should be listed as an adulterant [in food].”  Ignoring Salmonella in meat makes little, if any, sense. Even after the Court’s twisted opinion in Supreme Beef v. USDA, where it found Salmonella “not an adulterant per se, meaning its presence does not require the USDA to refuse to stamp such meat ‘inspected and passed,” our government’s failure to confront the reality of Salmonella, especially antibiotic-resistant Salmonella, is inexcusable.  The Wisconsin Supreme Court in Kriefall v Excel called it as it saw it:

The E. coli strain that killed Brianna and made the others sick is a “deleterious substance which may render [meat] injurious to health.” There is no dispute about this. Thus, under the first part of 21 U.S.C. § 601(m)(1), meat that either “bears or contains” E. coli O157:H7 (the “deleterious substance”) is “adulterated.” That E. coli O157:H7 contamination can be rendered non-“injurious to health” by cooking thoroughly, as discussed below, does not negate this; Congress used the phrase “may render,” not “in every circumstance renders.” Moreover, if the E. coli bacteria is not considered to be “an added substance,” because it comes from some of the animals themselves and is not either applied or supplied during the slaughtering process (although we do not decide this), it cannot be said that the E. coli strain “does not ordinarily render [the meat on or in which it appears] injurious to health.” Accordingly, meat contaminated by E. coli O157:H7 is also “adulterated” under the second part of § 601(m)(1).

Now, why would Salmonella be different? According to the CDC, it is estimated that 1.4 million cases of salmonellosis occur each year in the U.S. Of those cases, 95 percent are related to foodborne causes.  Approximately 220 of each 1000 cases result in hospitalization, and 8 of every 1000 cases result in death.  About 500 to 1,000 deaths – 31 percent of all food-related deaths – are caused by Salmonella infections each year. So, where do we stand with the existing USDA/FSIS law on adulteration?  Here is the law:

21 U.S.C. § 601(m)(4) – SUBCHAPTER I – INSPECTION REQUIREMENTS; ADULTERATION AND MISBRANDING – CHAPTER 12 – MEAT INSPECTION – TITLE 21—FOOD AND DRUGS

(m) The term “adulterated” shall apply to any carcass, part thereof, meat or meat food product under one or more of the following circumstances:

(1) if it bears or contains any poisonous or deleterious substance which may render it injurious to health; but in case the substance is not an added substance, such article shall not be considered adulterated under this clause if the quantity of such substance in or on such article does not ordinarily render it injurious to health; …

(3) if it consists in whole or in part of any filthyputrid, or decomposed substance or is for any other reason unsound, unhealthfulunwholesome, or otherwise unfit for human food;

(4) if it has been prepared, packed, or held under insanitary conditions whereby it may have become contaminated with filth, or whereby it may have been rendered injurious to health; …

Hmmm. It is hard to read the above and not think that the words in bold equate to all E. coli and Salmonella (frankly, all pathogens in food).  I know, I am just a lawyer, but don’t ya think that when food with animal feces (and a dash of E. coli O157:H7) in it is considered an adulterant, that other animal feces (with dashes of other pathogens, like Salmonella) in them, should be considered adulterated too?  But, hey, that is just me. Another odd governmental fact is that the FDA does not seem to make a distinction between pathogens it considers adulterants or not.  FDA’s enabling legislation – Sec. 402. [21 USC §342] of the Food, Drug & Cosmetic Act also defines “Adulterated Food” as food that is: 

(a) Poisonous, insanitary, or deleterious ingredients.

(1) If it bears or contains any poisonous or deleterious substance which may render it injurious to health; but in case the substance is not an added substance such food shall not be considered adulterated under this clause if the quantity of such substance in such food does not ordinarily render it injurious to health;

(2) If it bears or contains any added poisonous or added deleterious substance … that is unsafe within the meaning of section 406;

(3) if it consists in whole or in part of any filthy, putrid, or decomposed substance, or if it is otherwise unfit for food;

(4) if it has been prepared, packed, or held under insanitary conditions whereby it may have become contaminated with filth, or whereby it may have been rendered injurious to health …

It would be interesting, and perhaps entertaining, to have House and Senate hearings focusing on what should and should not be considered adulterants in our food.  I can see panels of scientists from various fields, FDA, USDA and FSIS officials, beef and produce industry representatives and consumers discussing this.  I would pay to watch it.

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 $650 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 Arthritisor 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.

Achdut LTD. of Ariel, Israel, is recalling its Tahini products of all packages and sizes produced on the following dates: April 7th to May 21st 2018, because it may be contaminated with Salmonella, an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Healthy persons infected with Salmonella often experience fever, diarrhea (which may be bloody), nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. In rare circumstances, infection with Salmonella can result in the organism getting into the bloodstream and producing more severe illnesses such as arterial infections (i.e., infected aneurysms), endocarditis and arthritis.

The recalled “Tahini” was distributed internationally in retail stores and through mail orders.

The tahini products are Tahini, Whole Tahini, Organic Tahini and Seasoned Tahini. Container sizes: 15oz, 16oz, 17.6oz, 635 oz (428g, 454g, 500g, 18Kg), with lot numbers 18-097 to 18-141 or with expiration dates April 7th to May 21st 2020, while the Baron’s brand carries an expiration date of 5/5/2021. The brand names of the products are: Achdut, Baron’s, S&F, Pepperwood, Soom and Achva.

Achdut is collaborating with health officials in connection with a positive finding of Salmonella in a US import sample of Achdut Tahini linked to a Salmonella outbreak that is currently being investigated by FDA and public health officials.

The probable root cause for this recall is cross contamination. The company has eliminated the source of contamination and preventive steps were taken.

As of December 7, 2018, this outbreak investigation is over.

A total of 25 people infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella I 4,[5],12:i:- were reported from six states.

Eleven people were hospitalized, including one death reported from New York.

Kosher chicken products were contaminated with Salmonella I 4,[5],12:i:- and made people sick.

In interviews, ill people reported eating kosher chicken, and when asked about the specific brand eaten, several people reported Empire Kosher brand.

The outbreak strain was also identified in samples of raw chicken collected from two facilities, including one facility that processes Empire Kosher brand chicken.

An additional 126 ill people from 13 states were included in this investigation since the last update on October 23, 2018. Three more states reported ill people: Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Missouri. Most illnesses in Arizona, California, Colorado and Texas.

As of November 15, 2018, 246 people infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Newport have been reported from 25 states.

Illnesses started on dates ranging from August 5, 2018 to October 16, 2018.

Fifty-nine people have been hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.

Epidemiologic, laboratory, and traceback evidence indicates that ground beef produced by JBS Tolleson, Inc. is a likely source of this outbreak.

On October 4, 2018, JBS Tolleson, Inc. recalled approximately 6.9 million pounds of beef products that may be contaminated with Salmonella Newport. On December 4, 2018, JBS Tolleson, Inc. recalled an additional 5.2 million pounds of beef products.

Do not eat, serve, or sell recalled beef products, including ground beef, that were recalled by JBS Tolleson, Inc., of Tolleson, Arizona, because they may be contaminated with Salmonella. The company recalled 6.9 million pounds of beef products on Oct. 4, 2018.

Recalled beef products were produced and packaged from July 26, 2018, to September 7, 2018 and were shipped to retailers nationwide under many brand names.

Check your freezer for recalled beef. Look for beef labeled with the establishment number “EST. 267.” This is usually found inside the USDA mark of inspection, but can be elsewhere on the package.

More than 100 retailers, including chain retail locations and local stores, sold the recalled beef. Stores are listed by state, in alphabetical order. Visit the USDA-FSIS website for a list of stores and states where the recalled beef products were sold[PDF – 322 KB].

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 $650 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.

JBS Tolleson, Inc., a Tolleson, Ariz. establishment, is recalling approximately 12,093,271 pounds of non-intact raw beef products that may be contaminated with Salmonella Newport, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.

The raw, non-intact beef items, including ground beef, were packaged on various dates from July 26, 2018 to Sept. 7, 2018. The following products are subject to recall:  [Products List (PDF) | Product Labels (PDF only)|

The products subject to recall bear establishment number “EST. 267” inside the USDA mark of inspection. These items were shipped to a retail locations and institutions nationwide.

After FSIS Recall 085-2018 on October 4, 2018, FSIS, CDC, and state public health and agriculture partners continued to investigate the outbreak of Salmonella Newport illnesses. The epidemiological investigation has identified 246 confirmed case-patients from 26 states with illness onset dates ranging from July 26 to September 7, 2018. An additional 16 case-patients have provided receipts or shopper card numbers for the product traceback investigations. Specific traceback for three case-patients have identified JBS Tolleson, Inc., EST. 267 ground beef products that were not part of the October 4, 2018 recall. FSIS will continue to work with public health partners and provide updated information should it become available.

Consumption of food contaminated with Salmonella can cause salmonellosis, one of the most common bacterial foodborne illnesses. The most common symptoms of salmonellosis are diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and fever within 12 to 72 hours after eating the contaminated product. The illness usually lasts 4 to 7 days. Most people recover without treatment. In some persons, however, the diarrhea may be so severe that the patient needs to be hospitalized. Older adults, infants, and persons with weakened immune systems are more likely to develop a severe illness. Individuals concerned about an illness should contact their health care provider.

FSIS is concerned that some product may be frozen and in consumers’ freezers. Consumers who have purchased these products are urged not to consume them.

The Cracker Barrel restaurant near I-94 and S. 9th St. is voluntarily closing its’ doors for good following a salmonella outbreak investigation.

The Kalamazoo County Health & Community Services Department (HCS), along with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) began investigating the location in June 2018 for health code violations and reports of food borne illnesses. HCS officials said the establishment voluntarily closed in June to begin facility renovations and worked with them to ensure all Michigan Food Law requirements were met to reopen.

On Tuesday November 27th, a salmonella diagnosis prompted a test by state officials and on Wednesday, 28th HCS received a letter from Cracker Barrel Corporate indicating they would close their Kalamazoo location permanently. HCS officials said the final voluntary closure was in response to environmental preliminary test results from Cracker Barrel’s private testing firm indicating that significant salmonella contamination was found. The state’s test results are expected next week.

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 Clarkhave represented thousands of victims of Salmonella and other foodborne illness outbreaks and have recovered over $650 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 Salmonellainfection, including Reactive Arthritisor 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.

 Salmonella Concord sickens at least 5 after eating hummus 

United States Food and Drug Administration, along with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and state and local partners, is investigating a multistate outbreak of Salmonella Concord illnesses linked to tahini imported from an Israeli manufacturer, Achdut Ltd., located in Ari’el, Israel.

Achdut Ltd. has voluntarily recalled all brands of tahini products manufactured from April 7, 2018 to May 21, 2018 with expiration dates of April 7, 2020 to May 21, 2020.

The FDA is advising consumers not to eat recalled Achva, Achdut, Soom, S&F, Pepperwood, and Baron’s brand tahini with expiration dates ranging from April 7, 2020 to May 21, 2020. The product lot codes range from 18-097 to 18-141. Consumers should discard the product or return the product to the store for a refund.

Some brands of tahini manufactured by Achdut Ltd. may lack specific dates or may have labels that are written in Hebrew. Consumers who have purchased a tahini product and are uncertain of where the product was manufactured or cannot identify the brand by lot codes or expiration dates should use caution and discard the product or return the food to the store for a refund. More product information and pictures of the recalled product labels can be found in the firm’s recall announcement.

Retailers and restaurants should not use any of the recalled tahini manufactured by Achdut Ltd. at their establishments. Retailers and restaurants should throw the product out.

Firms that may have used the recalled tahini (either repacked or used as an ingredient in a food without a kill step) should consider recalling their products. Recalls should be reported to your local FDA office. A list of recall coordinators can be found here.

Consumers who have symptoms of salmonellosis should contact their health care provider to report their symptoms and receive care.

CDC identified five ill people in the U.S. infected with Salmonella Concord that had the same genetic fingerprint as the Salmonella Concord found in tahini sampled at the point of import into the United States. Of the five U.S. cases interviewed, all five reported consuming hummus made with tahini; three people reported eating tahini or hummus made with tahini in a restaurant in the U.S., while the other two people reported consuming tahini or hummus made with tahini during international travel.

A sample of imported tahini collected by FDA at the point of import tested positive for Salmonella Concord. The tahini was Baron’s brand manufactured by Achdut Ltd. This manufacturer was placed on an FDA Import Alert, detaining additional product from the firm at the U.S. border until evidence is presented demonstrating that Salmonella is not present in the product. Whole genome sequencing analysis has indicated the positive sample of imported Baron’s brand tahini is highly related to clinical isolates from ill people in the U.S.

The number of confirmed cases of Salmonella related to the Chincoteague Chili Chowder Cook-Off has increased to 180.

The Virginia Division of Consolidated Laboratory has identified Salmonella javiana in a sample of Crab Shack Clam Chowder obtained from an attendee of the Chincoteague Chili Chowder Cook Off.

The DCLS says the finding is consistent with the exposure results of the online attendee survey. Approximately 500 survey responses, from both ill and non-ill attendees, were recorded in 18 days.

Health officials are still assembling reports from Virginia and as many as nine other states where event attendees live. The online attendee survey tool has been closed.

The Accomack County Health Department has received 180 reports of illness so far. About half of those reported ill sought medical care, with 20% receiving Emergency Room care and 10% having been hospitalized for one or more nights. No deaths have been reported.

Symptoms of Salmonella can include chills, dehydration, diarrhea, fatigue, fever, headaches, vomiting, or loss of appetite.

People who’ve gotten sick live in Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and North Carolina.

A total of 265 people infected with the outbreak strains of Salmonella Typhimurium were reported from 8 states. A list of the states and the number of cases in each can be found on the Case Count Map page. WGS performed on bacteria isolated from ill people showed that they were closely related genetically. This means that people in this outbreak were more likely to share a common source of infection.

Illnesses started on dates ranging from January 8, 2018, to March 20, 2018. Ill people ranged in age from less than 1 year to 89 years, with a median age of 57. Sixty-seven percent of people were female. Ninety-four hospitalizations were reported, including one person from Iowa who died.

Epidemiologic, laboratory, and traceback evidence indicated that chicken salad produced by Triple T Specialty Meats, Inc. and sold at Fareway grocery stores was the likely source of this multistate outbreak.

Public health officials in Iowa first detected this outbreak and linked the illnesses to chicken salad sold at Fareway grocery stores. CDC searched the PulseNet database and identified illnesses in other states, and those illnesses were added to this outbreak. In interviews, ill people answered questions about the foods they ate and other exposures in the week before they became ill. Of 222 people interviewed, 194 (87%) reported eating chicken salad purchased from Fareway grocery stores. Triple T Specialty Meats, Inc. produced the chicken salad that ill people reported eating.

On February 9, 2018, Fareway stopped selling chicken salad in all of its stores after the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals contacted the company about the illnesses. The Iowa Department of Public Health and the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals issued a consumer advisory on February 13, 2018 warning that chicken salad sold at Fareway may be contaminated with Salmonella.

Investigators in Iowa collected chicken salad from two Fareway grocery store locations in Iowa for laboratory testing. An outbreak strain of Salmonella Typhimurium was identified in both samples.

On February 21, 2018, Triple T Specialty Meats, Inc. recalled all chicken salad produced from January 2, 2018 to February 7, 2018. The recalled chicken salad was sold in containers of various weights from the deli at Fareway grocery stores in Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, Nebraska, and South Dakota from January 4, 2018 to February 9, 2018.

Jennie-O Turkey Store Sales, LLC, a Barron, Wis. establishment, is recalling approximately 147,276 pounds of raw ground turkey products that may be associated with an illness outbreak of Salmonella Reading, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.

The raw ground turkey products items were produced on September 11, 2018. The following products are subject to recall:

  • 1-lb. packages of “Jennie-O GROUND TURKEY 93% LEAN | 7% FAT” with “Use by” dates of 10/01/2018 and 10/02/2018.
  • 1-lb. packages of “Jennie-O TACO SEASONED GROUND TURKEY” with a “Use by” date of 10/02/2018.
  • 1-lb. packages of “Jennie-O GROUND TURKEY 85% LEAN | 15% FAT” with a “Use by” date of 10/02/2018.
  • 1-lb. packages of “Jennie-O ITALIAN SEASONED GROUND TURKEY” with a “Use by” date of 10/02/2018.
  • 1-lb. packages of “GROUND TURKEY 90% LEAN | 10% FAT” with a “Use by” date of 10/02/20

The products subject to recall bear establishment number “P-190” inside the USDA mark of inspection. These items were shipped to retail locations nationwide.

States where the affected product was shipped: AZ, CA, CO, FL, GA, IA, IL, IN, MI, MN, NC, NM, NV, NY, OH, OK, OR, PA, SC, TX, UT, WA, WI

FSIS, and its public health partners, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Arizona Department of Health Services, have been conducting traceback activities for a sample of Jennie-O brand ground turkey in an intact, unopened package from a case-patient’s home. The patient tested positive for Salmonella Reading and the sample from the ground turkey matches the outbreak strain.

FSIS, the CDC, and state public health and agriculture partners, have been working together on an illness cluster involving 164 case-patients in 35 states. Patients have reported eating different types and brands of turkey products purchased from many different stores, handling raw turkey pet food and/or raw turkey, or working with live turkeys or living with someone who handled live turkeys. FSIS continues to work with the CDC and state health departments on this investigation and will provide updated information as it becomes available. Based on the continuing investigation, additional product from other companies may also be recalled.

Consumption of food contaminated with Salmonella can cause salmonellosis, one of the most common bacterial foodborne illnesses. The most common symptoms of salmonellosis are diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and fever within 12 to 72 hours after eating the contaminated product. The illness usually lasts 4 to 7 days. Most people recover without treatment. In some persons, however, the diarrhea may be so severe that the patient needs to be hospitalized. Older adults, infants, and persons with weakened immune systems are more likely to develop a severe illness. Individuals concerned about an illness should contact their health care provider.

FSIS is concerned that some product may be frozen and in consumers’ freezers. Consumers who have purchased these products are urged not to consume them.

According to the CDC:

  • As of November 5, 2018, 164 people infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Reading have been reported from 35 states.
    • 63 people have been hospitalized, and one death has been reported from California.
  • Epidemiologic and laboratory evidence indicates that raw turkey products from a variety of sources are contaminated with Salmonella Reading and are making people sick.
  • In interviews, ill people report eating different types and brands of turkey products purchased from many different locations. Three ill people lived in households where raw turkey pet food was fed to pets.
  • The outbreak strain has been identified in samples taken from raw turkey pet food, raw turkey products, and live turkeys.
    • On November 15, 2018, Jennie-O Turkey Store Sales in Barron, Wisconsin recalled approximately 91,388 pounds of raw ground turkey products.
    • A single, common supplier of raw turkey products or of live turkeys has not been identified that could account for the whole outbreak.
  • The outbreak strain of Salmonella Reading is present in live turkeys and in many types of raw turkey products, indicating it might be widespread in the turkey industry. CDC and USDA-FSIS have shared this information with representatives from the turkey industry and asked about steps that they may be taking to reduce Salmonella contamination.

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 $650 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.