The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued an update Thursday on the salmonella outbreak that led to the recall of about 200 million eggs produced by an Indiana farm.
According to the CDC’s bulletin, which was the first issued since April 16, 12 more people from five states were confirmed to have fallen ill since the last update. This brought the number of people sickened by the salmonella outbreak to 35 across nine states. A total of 11 people were hospitalized in relation to the outbreak, with no fatalities reported so far.
With the newly released information in mind, the CDC advised consumers, restaurants, and retailers respectively not to eat, serve, or sell the eggs involved in the recall. The advisory also warned that the tainted eggs should be disposed of, or returned to the place of purchase for a refund.
As noted in a report from the Tampa Patch, the salmonella outbreak was traced to eggs from Indiana-based Rose Acre Farms’ Hyde County, North Carolina, farm, and were sold under a variety of brand names, including Country Daybreak, Crystal Farms, and Great Value. The eggs were sold by Walmart, among other leading U.S. retailers, and were recalled on April 13.
A report from Food Safety News provided more information on the confirmed salmonella cases, noting that the people sickened by the tainted eggs ranged from 1 to 90 years old, with a median age of 65. Out of the 25 sickened individuals who provided complete details, 22 people, or 88 percent, said that they fell ill after eating shell eggs. Another 16 people recalled that they ate dishes with egg at a restaurant, with representatives from the restaurants confirming to the CDC that they used shell eggs when preparing the dishes. Due to the interval between the time symptoms are first reported and the time the CDC gets more information from state and local officials, more cases are likely to be confirmed in the coming days.
The CDC’s salmonella fact sheet states that the bacteria is responsible for about 1.2 million illnesses, 23,000 hospitalizations, and 450 deaths each year in the U.S., with over 80 percent of the illnesses traced to tainted food. Symptoms usually include diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps which set in about 12 to 72 hours after infection, and last four to seven days. Most people make successful recoveries without any need for treatment, but there are some cases where severe diarrhea may require hospitalization.