CDC and public health and regulatory officials in several states are investigating a multistate outbreak of multidrug-resistant Salmonella infections linked to raw turkey products. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (USDA-FSIS) is monitoring the outbreak.
Latest Outbreak Information
- As of November 5, 2018, 164 people infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Reading have been reported from 35 states.
- 63 people have been hospitalized, and one death has been reported from California.
- Epidemiologic and laboratory evidence indicates that raw turkey products from a variety of sources are contaminated with Salmonella Reading and are making people sick.
- In interviews, ill people report eating different types and brands of turkey products purchased from many different locations. Three ill people lived in households where raw turkey pet food was fed to pets.
- The outbreak strain has been identified in samples taken from raw turkey pet food, raw turkey products, and live turkeys.
- On November 15, 2018, Jennie-O Turkey Store Sales in Barron, Wisconsin recalled approximately 91,388 pounds of raw ground turkey products.
- A single, common supplier of raw turkey products or of live turkeys has not been identified that could account for the whole outbreak.
- 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. CDC and USDA-FSIS have shared this information with representatives from the turkey industry and asked about steps that they may be taking to reduce Salmonella contamination.
Recall and Advice to Consumers and Retailers
On November 15, 2018, Jennie-O Turkey Store Sales, LLC, in Barron, Wisconsin recalled approximately 91,388 pounds of raw ground turkey products. The recalled ground turkey was sold in one-pound packages labeled with establishment number “P-190”. This is found inside the USDA mark of inspection. The following products were recalled:
- “Jennie-O Ground Turkey 93% LEAN | 7% FAT” with “Use by” dates of 10/01/2018 and 10/02/2018.
- “Jennie-O Taco Seasoned Ground Turkey” with a “Use by” date of 10/02/2018.
- “Jennie-O Ground Turkey 85% LEAN | 15% FAT” with a “Use by” date of 10/02/2018.
- “Jennie-O Italian Seasoned Ground Turkey” with a “Use by” date of 10/02/2018.
Do not eat, sell, or serve recalled Jennie-O brand ground turkey products.
Always handle raw turkey carefully and cook it thoroughly to prevent food poisoning. This outbreak is a reminder that raw turkey products can have germs that spread around food preparation areas and can make you sick.
With the exception of the recalled Jennie-O brand ground turkey products, CDC is not advising that consumers avoid eating properly cooked turkey products, or that retailers stop selling raw turkey products.
CDC advises consumers to follow these steps to help prevent Salmonella infection from raw turkey:
- Wash your hands. Salmonella infections can spread from one person to another. Wash hands before and after handling raw turkey products.
- Cook raw turkey thoroughly to kill harmful germs. Turkey breasts, whole turkeys, and ground poultry, including turkey burgers, casseroles, and sausage, should always be cooked to an internal temperature of 165°F to kill harmful germs. Leftovers should be reheated to 165°F. Use a food thermometer to check, and place it in the thickest part of the food.
- Don’t spread germs from raw turkey around food preparation areas. Washing raw poultry before cooking is not recommended. Germs in raw poultry juices can spread to other areas and foods. Thoroughly wash hands, counters, cutting boards, and utensils with warm, soapy water after they touch raw turkey. Use a separate cutting board for raw turkey and other raw meats if possible.
- CDC does not recommend feeding raw diets to pets. Germs like Salmonella in raw pet food can make your pets sick. Your family also can get sick by handling the raw food or by taking care of your pet.
CDC will update the advice to consumers and retailers if more information comes available, such as a supplier or type of raw turkey product linked to illness.
Symptoms of Salmonella Infection
- Most people infected with Salmonella develop diarrhea, fever, and stomach cramps 12 to 72 hours after being exposed to the bacteria.
- The illness usually lasts 4 to 7 days, and most people recover without treatment.
- In some people, the diarrhea may be so severe that the patient needs to be hospitalized. Salmonella infection may spread from the intestines to the bloodstream and then to other places in the body.
- In rare cases, Salmonella infection can cause death unless the person is treated promptly with antibiotics.
- Children younger than 5 years of age, adults older than 65 years of age, and people with weakened immune systems are more likely to have severe illness.
- For more information, see the CDCSalmonella website.