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Salmonella Egg Recall Called Urgent

Posted on August 24, 2010

An outbreak of Salmonella-infected eggs traced to two Iowa farms has sickened more than 2,000 individuals around the country, including as far east as Georgia.

The Salmonella strain in question is Enteritidis (SE). As many as 2,000 people may have been sickened in 17 states, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. So far, no cases have been reported in Florida.

Salmonella causes severe cramps, fever, diarrhea, and in some cases in people with a weak immune system, can cause a life-threatening bloodstream infection.

The FDA continues to have on-site investigators at Hilldale Farms of Iowa, Inc. and Wright County Egg in Iowa after a laboratory confirmed the strain of Salmonella Enteritidis, which is associated with the shell eggs.

So far, the number of recalled eggs has reached 550 million after being sold to various distribution centers and retailers.

Eggs are distributed in 6-egg cartons, dozen-egg cartons, 18-egg cartons, 30-egg packages, and 5-dozen cases with the plant code of:

-P1860 — Julian dates ranging from 099 to 230

-P1663 — Julian dates ranging from 137 to 230

The eggs in question were sold under the Hilldale Farms, Sunny Farms, and Sunny Meadow names through the following stores:

Farm Fresh, James Farms, Glenview, Mountain Dairy, Ralphs, Boomsma, Lund, Kemps and Pacific Coast, Lucerne, Ralphs, Boomsma’;s, Sunshine, Hillandale, Trafficanda, Farm Fresh, Shoreland, and Dutch Farms.

Cases began coming forward in May, but were not linked to a national outbreak until July.

Salmonella
Hens can pass on the bacterial infection by eating feed that is contaminated with rodent feces, which contains the bacterium. They then can lay eggs that are infected, or eggs can become contaminated during shipping or packaging. The FDA is checking the feed supply to the two farms.

The outbreak occurred just as new federal regulations designed to prevent salmonella contamination of eggs took effect on July 9, reports the Washington Post.

The rules, under development since 2004, require egg farms of a certain size to test for “environmental contamination,” to control rodents, to have clean poultry houses and transport eggs at cool temperatures. The farms in question say they had already voluntarily been following the measures which will now become mandatory.

Cooking an egg thoroughly kills the bacterium and it is not advised to eat dirty eggs, ones that are cracked in the box, or eggs that have been left unrefrigerated for more than two hours, reports the FDA. Florida food recall attorneys would like to remind you to be safe and check your eggs to ensure that you have not gotten a contaminated batch.