The National Chicken Council and major chicken producers have deemed September National Chicken Month in an effort to promote sales. In observance, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is reminding consumers to handle chicken safely, avoid cross-contamination during preparation and use a food thermometer to make sure your chicken reaches a safe temperature of at least 165 °F.
That’s because chicken is a frequent source of foodborne illness. Each year, about 1 million Americans get sick from eating contaminated poultry, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Here’s a look at some recent, and one still ongoing, food poisoning outbreaks linked to chicken.
Ongoing Salmonella Outbreak Linked to Breaded, Stuffed Chicken Products
An ongoing Salmonella outbreak linked to breaded, stuffed chicken products has sickened 28 people in eight states. Eleven people have been hospitalized. Serenade Foods of Milford, IN has issued a recall for Chicken Brocolli and Cheese and Chicken Cordon Bleu products sold under the brand names Kirkwood, Milford Valley, and Dutch Farms.
The recalled stuffed, breaded chicken products were sold in the freezer sections at ALDI and other stores including Al’s, County Market, Martin’s Meijer, Save A Lot, Strack & Van Til, and Walmart stores.
Cooked Chicken Listeria Outbreak
Last month, a Listeria outbreak linked to Tyson pre-cooked chicken ended with three illnesses and one death. Health officials genetic tests to establish that the three patients were sickened by the identical strain of Listeria which was also found in two samples of Tyson pre-cooked chicken. After this link was established, Tyson issued a recall of 8.5 million pounds of cooked chicken products.
The recalled chicken products were sold nationwide under the brand names Casey’s General Store, Jet’s Pizza, Little Caesar’s Pizza, Marco Pizza, Tyson, and Tyson Red Label. LSG Sky Chefs of Phoenix issued a secondary recall for chicken salad sandwiches, Caesar salads, and chef salads sold at Circle K stores in Arizona and Southern California was also issued.
2018-2019 Fatal Raw Chicken Salmonella Outbreak
In February 2019, a Salmonella outbreak linked to raw chicken ended after sickening 129 people, killing one of them. In its final report on the outbreak, the CDC said the antibiotic-resistant Salmonella Infnatis strain linked to the outbreak was widespread throughout the chicken industry.
The CDC and USDA worked together on the outbreak investigation. They found the outbreak strain in 76 samples collected from live chickens, from raw chicken pet food, and from chicken slaughter or processing facilities.
The people sickened in the outbreak, who ranged in age from less than 1 year to 105 years old, told health officials during interviews that they became ill after eating chicken they had purchased raw and prepared at home before. They reported the onset of symptoms on dates ranging from January 8, 2018, to January 27, 2019.
These patients named multiple brands and multiple stores, but federal agencies never disclosed them. No recalls were issued.
The cases reported from each state was: Alabama 1, Arkansas 2, California 1, Colorado 1, Connecticut 3, Delaware 3, Florida 2, Georgia 2, Hawaii 1, Illinois 7, Indiana 1, Kentucky 2, Louisiana 2, Maine 1, Maryland 4, Massachusetts 17, Michigan 4, Minnesota 5, Missouri 3, North Carolina 7, Nebraska 1, New Jersey 9, New York 18, Ohio 8, Pennsylvania 13, Rhode Island 2, South Carolina 1, Tennessee 1, Texas 2, Virginia 2, Washington 2 and Wisconsin 1. The fatality was reported from New York.
At the close of this investigation, the CDC and USDA said they were holding discussions with representatives from the chicken industry to address ways this widespread, antibiotic-resistant strain of Salmonella Infantis could be reduced.
Food Poisoning Lawyers
Pritzker Hageman food safety lawyers have won millions for clients sickened by contaminated food. If you contracted Salmonella, Listeria, or E. coli from contaminated food and would like a free consultation with an experienced food poisoning lawyer, please contact us. You can reach us by calling 1-888-377-8900, sending a text to 612-261-0856, or by completing the form below. There is no obligation and we don’t get paid unless we win.