The U.S. Department of Agriculture issued a health alert warning consumers of salmonella linked to three Foster Farms processing facilities in Central California.
The year-old national outbreak stands at 524 sickened by strains of salmonella.
Get this: Federal inspectors and Foster Farms say salmonella-tainted chicken is safe to eat when handled properly and cooked to a minimum of 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
Salmonellosis, the illness caused by the bacteria, usually lasts four to seven days. Although, most persons recover without treatment, in some persons, the diarrhea may be so severe that the patient needs to be hospitalized. Every year, approximately 42,000 cases of salmonellosis are reported in the United States. Children are the most likely to get salmonellosis. Young children, the elderly, and the immunocompromised are the most likely to have severe infections. It is estimated that approximately 400 persons die each year with acute salmonellosis.
· On January 10, 2014, Tyson Foods, Inc. recalled approximately 33,840 pounds of mechanically separated chicken products that may be contaminated with Salmonella Heidelberg.
· 2013 – Epidemiologic, laboratory, and traceback findings linked this outbreak of human Salmonella Typhimurium infections to contact with chicks, ducklings, and other live baby poultry sourced from Privett Hatchery in Portales, New Mexico.
· 2013 Mt. Healthy Hatcheries in Ohio: A total of 158 persons infected with the outbreak strains of Salmonella Infantis, Salmonella Lille, Salmonella Newport, or Salmonella Mbandaka were reported from 30 states.
· 2013: Testing conducted by the Washington State Public Health Laboratories identified the outbreak strain of Salmonella Heidelberg in four intact samples of chicken collected from three ill persons’ homes in Washington, which were traced back to two Foster Farms slaughter establishments.
· 2013: Collaborative investigative efforts of state, local, and federal public health and regulatory agencies indicated that ground beef produced by Jouni Meats, Inc. and Gab Halal Foods were the likely sources of this outbreak.
This is the price we pay for our meat addiction.
Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water right after touching live poultry or anything in the area where they live and roam. Adults should supervise hand washing for young children.
If soap and water are not readily available, use hand sanitizer until you are able to wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water.
Do not let children younger than 5 years of age, older adults, or people with weak immune systems handle or touch chicks, ducklings, or other live poultry. Children younger than 5 years, older adults, and people with weakened immune systems are more likely to have a severe illness from Salmonella infection.
Do not snuggle or kiss the birds, touch your mouth, or eat or drink around live poultry.