Salmonella Outbreak Linked to Good Earth Shell Eggs

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is announcing the investigation of a Salmonella Oranienburg outbreak linked to shell eggs produced by Good Earth Egg Company of Bonne Terre, Missouri. At least eight people in three states have been sickened with the outbreak strain of bacteria.

Salmonella Oranienburg Egg Outbreak

Epidemiologic, traceback, and laboratory investigations conducted by public health officials identified shell eggs distributed by that company as the likely source of this outbreak. These eggs were sold under different brand names. If you are not sure whether or not you purchased these eggs, ask your retailer. And be careful when ordering eggs from restaurants; ask if they came from Good Earth Egg Company.

The case count in this outbreak by state is: Illinois (1), Kansas (1), and Missouri (6). Ill persons range in age from 1 year to 85, with a median age of 44. Sixty-three percent of those sickened are women. Seven people were interviewed in this outbreak; of those, two, or 29%, were hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.

The Investigation

Whole genome sequencing has revealed that isolates taken from patients in this outbreak are closely related. That means that people in this outbreak are likely to share a common source of infection.

In addition, this particular outbreak strain is closely related to a Salmonella Oranienburg strain from an outbreak in 2015 that was also linked to the Good Earth Egg Company. In that outbreak, 52 people in 6 states were sickened with Salmonella infections. The Good Earth Egg Company recalled all of its shell eggs on January 9, 2016 in response to that outbreak.

All of the ill persons interviewed in this outbreak said they ate or possibly ate shell eggs, at restaurants or at home, before they got sick. Officials traced the eggs from one restaurant location in Missouri where three patients dined to the Good Earth Egg Company.

Then, Missouri officials collected and tested shell eggs from that unnamed Missouri restaurant. They found the outbreak strain of Salmonella Oranienburg. Environmental samples taken from the Good Earth Egg Company processing facility itself also isolated the outbreak strain of Salmonella Oranienburg.

Whole genome sequencing found that the isolates of Salmonella Oranienburg from eggs distributed by Good Earth Egg Company are closely related genetically to isolates from patients in this outbreak. The isolates are also related to those taken from patients and environmental samples in the 2015 outbreak.

Consumers should not eat, and retailers and restaurants should not sell or serve, shell eggs distributed by the Good Earth Egg Company at this time. This investigation is ongoing and may grow as more PulseNet records are examined.

Salmonella Infections

The symptoms of a Salmonella infection can include vomiting, nausea, abdominal pain, diarrhea that may be watery or bloody, fever, chills, headache, and muscle aches. These symptoms begin six to seventy-two hours after eating a food contaminated with this pathogenic bacteria.

Most people do recover without medical intervention when they are sickened by Salmonella bacteria. But some patients can become so sick, with dehydration or sepsis, that they must be hospitalized. And long term complications of this infection can occur even if the patient recovers completely. Reactive arthritis, irritable bowel syndrome, and high blood pressure can occur months or years later.

If you ate eggs, especially in the geographic locations affected by this outbreak, and have experienced the symptoms of a Salmonella infection, see your doctor. Then contact our law firm for a free consultation to protect your legal rights.

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Category: Food Poisoning
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