Salmonella outbreak in 26 states, including North Carolina, tied to raw turkey

Minnesotans sickened by salmonella from raw turkey

Salmonella outbreak in raw turkey products, infecting 90 so far, warns CDC

On Thursday, the CDC announced an outbreak of salmonella that has sickened at least 90 people across 26 states.

Genetic sequencing tests didn't identify predicted resistance in 68 isolates from patient, food, and animal samples, but 33 isolates from people and 49 samples from food and animals contained resistance genes to all or some all of the following antibiotics: ampicillin, streptomycin, sulfamethoxazole, tetracycline, gentamicin, and kanamycin.

Illnesses started turning up November 20, 2017.

The outbreak strain of Salmonella Reading is present in live turkeys and in many types of raw turkey products, indicating it might be widespread in the turkey industry, according to report.

Investigators have not identified a common supplier of raw turkey products or live turkeys. The same year, a Salmonella Hadar outbreak linked to turkey burgers resulted in at least 12 infections in 10 states.

"In Hawai'i, we love to eat and enjoy gatherings with potlucks and raw foods, which make us especially susceptible to foodborne illnesses", said Peter Oshiro, environmental health program manager for food safety.

Forty people have been hospitalized in the outbreak, which to date has not included any deaths. Of 61 people interviewed, 37 reported preparing or eating turkey products that were purchased raw, including ground turkey, turkey pieces, and whole turkey.

Wash your hands before and after preparing or eating your food or your pet's food.

Consumers are reminded to cook all raw meat and poultry products to the recommended temperature and thoroughly wash your hands after handling any of these products. They're asking retailers to stop selling raw turkey products. Given the potentially ubiquitous nature of this outbreak, the CDC says its working with the US Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (USDA-FSIS) to reach out to representatives from the turkey industry and implement plans to reduce contamination. For example, all poultry, including ground chicken and turkey, should be cooked to an internal temperature of 165°F.

While eating raw turkey is obviously a bad idea, it's important to be careful when simply handling an uncooked bird.

Thoroughly wash any kitchen surfaces and utensils that come into contact with raw turkey. Use a separate cutting board for raw turkey and other raw meats if possible.

Latest News