Another Epidemic: Spreading Fast in U.S. – 59% Sick are Females – Warning from FDA & CDC

salmonela

The FDA, along with CDC and state and local partners, are investigating a multistate outbreak of Thompson infections linked to seafood manufactured or processed by Northeast Seafood Products, Inc. of Denver, CO. According to CDC, the majority of sick people are either Colorado residents or reported traveling to Colorado during the week they got sick.

Two people did not report traveling to Colorado during the week they got sick, which creates panic among US citizens, CDC and FDA are still investigating this issue.

CDC Analysis

CDC’s analysis of epidemiological information indicates that seafood is the leading hypothesis for the cause of illnesses linked to this outbreak. FDA’s traceback investigation identified Northeast Seafood Products, Inc. as a common distributor among illness subclusters.

As part of this outbreak investigation, environmental samples were collected from Northeast Seafood Products, Inc. On 10/7/2021, environmental samples collected from Northeast Seafood Products, Inc. were reported positive for Salmonella Thompson and were determined to be a match to the outbreak strain through whole genome sequencing.

On Sept. 2, 20 people were reported sick by the strain of Salmonella Oranienburg. Since then, the CDC says the outbreak has “grown rapidly.”

No food source has been attributed to the outbreak, but state and local officials from infected states have collected food samples from restaurants where sick people ate and found salmonella in a condiment cup containing cilantro and lime. The cup also had onions, but they weren’t inside when the food was tested.

“Because multiple food items were present in the container and in the sample that was tested, it is not possible to know which food item was contaminated. We are using this information in conjunction with other available information to help narrow the list of possible foods linked to illness,” the agency said in a statement.

Health officials also believe true number of infections is much higher than reported as some people recover from salmonella without medical care and therefore are not tested for it. It can also takes up to four weeks to determine whether someone was part of an outbreak.

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Symptoms of salmonella infection include diarrhea, vomiting, fever, stomach cramps and dehydration, which can begin six hours to six days after being exposed to the bacteria, according to the CDC. Most people recover without treatment after four to seven days. 

Children under the age of 5, people 65 years and older and those with weakened immune systems may experience more severe illness from salmonella.

Last month, 862,000 pounds of uncured antipasto products were recalled for possible salmonella contamination that caused sickness in people across 17 states.

The CDC recommends people practice food safety measures such as cleaning utensils, hands and foods, as well as separating different foods and making sure all food is cooked to a high enough temperature. The agency also recommends refrigerating perishable foods within two hours and thawing foods in a refrigerator.

On 10/8/2021, Northeast Seafood Products, Inc. recalled the following products
Haddock,

  • Monkfish,
  • Bone-in Trout,
  • Grouper,
  • Red Snapper,
  • Red Rock Cod,
  • Ocean Perch,
  • Pacific Cod,
  • Halibut,
  • Coho Salmon,
  • Atlantic Salmon Portions,
  • Lane Snapper,
  • Tilapia,
  • All Natural Salmon Fillet,
  • Pacific Sole,
  • Farm Raised Striped Bass.

These products were sold to restaurant and Albertsons, Safeway, and Sprouts supermarkets in Colorado.  The Pacific Cod sold through Sprouts is not being recalled. A full list of recalled products is available on FDA’s website. At this time, Northeast Seafood Products, Inc. has temporarily shut down production.

Recommendation

Consumers, restaurants, and retailers should not eat, sell, or serve any recalled seafood. FDA recommends that anyone who might have purchased or received recalled product, check their refrigerators and freezers and throw away recalled product.

Summary

  • Company Announcement Date:October 08, 2021
  • FDA Publish Date:October 08, 2021
  • Product Type:Food & Beverages
  • Reason for Announcement:Potential for Salmonella
  • Company Name:Northeast Seafood Products
  • Brand Name:Northeast Seafood Products
  • Product Description:Raw, fresh seafood

Company Announcement

Northeast Seafood Products, Denver, CO, is voluntarily recalling certain types of seafood that were processed at our facility because they have the potential of being 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 sever illnesses such as arterial infections (i.e. infected aneurysms), endocarditis and arthritis.

The items being recalled are: Haddock, Monkfish, Bone-in Trout, Grouper, Red Snapper, Red Rock Cod, Ocean Perch, Pacific Cod, Halibut, Coho Salmon, Atlantic Salmon Portions, Lane Snapper, Tilapia, All Natural Salmon Fillet, Pacific Sole, and Farm Raised Striped Bass.

These items were distributed from May 2021 to October 7, 2021 to restaurants and Albertsons, Safeway, and Sprouts supermarkets in Colorado. The recalled items would have sold out of their fresh seafood cases. The Pacific Cod sold through Sprouts is not being recalled.

The recall is the result of several positive samples revealed during an FDA. inspection. FDA and CDC have informed us that these positive samples are linked to an outbreak of Salmonella illness.

The production area of our facility has been temporarily shut down until such time as the FDA and the company determine that the problem has been corrected.

Consumers who have purchased raw, fresh, unpackaged seafood are urged to return the product to the place of purchase for a full refund.

Consumers with questions may call Northeast Seafood directly at 303-373-2226. Monday to Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. mountain time.

map Salmonella Thompson outbreak seafood 825x393 1
Map of Salmonela outbreak in Major States in US

CDC data shows the outbreak has stretched across the U.S.; Texas, 81, and Oklahoma, 40, have the most cases. Other notable states with outbreaks include Illinois, 23, Virginia, 22, and Minnesota, 19. The infected people have ranged in age from less than a year old to 89 years old;  59% of sick people are females. No deaths have been reported.Get the Coronavirus Watch newsletter in your inbox.

About Salmonella infections


Food that is contaminated with Salmonella bacteria usually does not look, smell or taste spoiled. Anyone can become sick with a Salmonella infection, but infants, children, seniors and people with weakened immune systems are at higher risk of serious illness because their immune systems are fragile, according to the CDC.

Anyone who has eaten any of the recalled products or eaten seafood at Colorado restaurants and developed symptoms of Salmonella infection should seek medical attention. Sick people should tell their doctors about the possible exposure to Salmonella bacteria because special tests are necessary to diagnose salmonellosis. Salmonella infection symptoms can mimic other illnesses, frequently leading to misdiagnosis.

Symptoms of Salmonella infection can include diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and fever within 12 to 72 hours after eating contaminated food. Otherwise healthy adults are usually sick for four to seven days. In some cases, however, diarrhea may be so severe that patients need to be hospitalized. 

Older adults, children, pregnant women and people with weakened immune systems, such as cancer patients, are more likely to develop a severe illness and serious, sometimes life-threatening conditions.

It is possible for some people to be infected with the bacteria and to not get sick or show any symptoms, but to still be able to spread the infection to others.

What You Should Do

Take action if you have symptoms of a Salmonella infection:

Call your healthcare provider right away if you have any of these severe Salmonella symptoms:

  • Diarrhea and a fever higher than 102°F
  • Diarrhea for more than 3 days that is not improving
  • Bloody diarrhea
  • So much vomiting that you cannot keep liquids down
  • Signs of dehydration, such as:
    • Not peeing much
    • Dry mouth and throat
    • Feeling dizzy when standing up

Always follow these four food safety steps to prevent getting sick from Salmonella:

  • Clean: Wash your hands, utensils, and surfaces often. Rinse fruits and vegetables under running water before eating, cutting, or peeling them.
  • Separate: Keep food that won’t be cooked separate from raw meat, poultry, and seafood.
  • Cook: Use a food thermometer to make sure you have cooked your food to a temperature high enough to kill germsexternal icon.
  • Chill: Refrigerate perishable foods within 2 hours (within 1 hour if the food has been exposed to temperatures above 90°F, like at a picnic). Thaw food in the refrigerator, not on the counter.
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