CDC officially declares chicken-related salmonella outbreak to be over – Salmonella Lawyer warns these outbreaks are “rarely over”
The salmonella outbreak that caused 129 illnesses in 32 states, including 25 hospitalizations and 1 death, is over,. At least according to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC). The specific source of the salmonella contamination was not specifically identified, though health officials did trace it to chicken. According the Salmonella lawyer Tony Coveny, however, the official declaration may be misleading. As a Salmonella lawyer, Coveny notes from experience:
“The problem in the U.S. is that chicken manufacturers/growers operate is such a manner that the entire population of chicken is potentially contaminated. This outbreak may have ended in the sense that there have been no confirmed cases in recent weeks, but the likelihood that contaminated chicken is still in the refrigerators and freezers of consumers is high.”
Despite how often these outbreaks occur, the industry still resists changes that would reduce the amount and frequency in which chicken sold in the US contains salmonella.
Salmonella is Potentially Deadly Bacteria: One Death in this Outbreak Identified
The death was reported in the state of New York, which was one of the hardest hit states during the outbreak. There were 18 illnesses reported in New York. Others with double-digit illness reports included Pennsylvania with 13 and Massachusetts with 17. Illnesses related to contaminated chicken products started on January 8, 2018, and continued through January 27, 2019.
Illnesses could continue, even after the outbreak has been officially declared to be over, because this salmonella strain appears to be widespread in the chicken industry. People can get a salmonella infection from eating undercooked chicken or touching raw chicken, including packaged raw pet food. In fact, one person reported becoming sick after pets in the home ate raw ground chicken pet products.
Multiple sources appear to be responsible for the salmonella outbreak. CDC indicates that many types of raw chicken products from a variety of sources are contaminated with salmonella and are making people sick. The outbreak strain was identified in samples taken from raw chicken products, raw chicken pet food, and live chickens. In addition, the outbreak strain of salmonella responsible for these illnesses is resistant to multiple antibiotics.
CDC and The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (USDA-FSIS) are actively engaging with representatives from the chicken industry to explore ways to reduce salmonella in chicken products. Because investigation results suggest this strain of salmonella is present in both live chickens and in raw chicken products, further investigation and interventions to reduce the prevalence of this strain will target both the live chicken industry and chicken processing facilities.