170 Salmonella Cases Tied To Tainted Chicken Livers

The ongoing chicken liver Salmonella outbreak has been linked to nearly 170 illnesses. Earlier this week, we wrote that Schreiber Processing Corporation of Maspeth, New York, recalled an undetermined amount of its <"http://www.yourlawyer.com/practice_areas/food_poisoning">broiled chicken liver products linked to the Salmonella illness cluster. Now, the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota (CIDRAP) reports 169 reports, to date, of sickness linked to the chicken livers, said MSNBC.

The recall was deemed a Class I by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), which means this is a health hazard situation in which there exists a reasonable probability that the use of the recalled product will cause serious, adverse health consequences or death. The FSIS continues to collaborate with states, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on the ongoing investigation.

The broiled chicken livers, which appear to be ready-to-eat are, in fact, only partially cooked and require full cooking prior to consumption. Salmonellosis illnesses are also linked to chopped liver made from this product at retail stores.

The outbreak strain of Salmonella Heidelberg was isolated by the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets from samples of Schreiber Processing broiled chicken livers, and chopped chicken livers produced at retail from these livers. The product would have been repackaged and will not bear original packaging information. Of note, the outbreak strain PFGE pattern does not match the Salmonella Heidelberg strain linked to ground turkey recalled earlier this year. It remains unclear if this particular strain has any drug resistance at this time.

CIDRAP said illnesses include 56 in New York, with another 33 outside the city; 64 in New Jersey; 9 in Pennsylvania; and 7 in Maryland. The recalled chicken liver was distributed in Maryland, Minnesota, New York, Pennsylvania, Florida, Ohio, and Rhode Island, said MSNBC, citing an updated FSIS post.

Each bag or box bears the establishment number “P-787″ inside the USDA mark of inspection and includes 10-pound boxes with two, five-pound bags of “Meal Mart Broiled Chicken Liver; Made for Further Thermal Processing” and 10-pound boxes of loose packed “Chicken Liver Broiled.”

The most common symptoms of salmonellosis—Salmonella infection—are diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and fever with symptoms manifesting, usually, within six to 72 hours. Additional symptoms include chills, headache, nausea, and vomiting that can last up to seven days. The illness usually lasts four to seven days; however, in some, the organism can invade the bloodstream, becoming so severe that hospitalization is required.

Sometimes, infection with the Salmonella pathogen can result in, and produce more, severe or chronic illnesses. Salmonella can be dangerous, sometimes deadly, leaving sufferers with serious life-long health issues. Salmonellosis, one of the most common bacterial food borne illnesses, can be especially life threatening to those with weakened immune systems, such as infants, the elderly, and persons with HIV infection or who are undergoing chemotherapy.

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