A new salmonella outbreak which is somehow linked with onions has sent more than 900 people in different parts of the US and Canada. At least 979 people are confirmed with salmonella infection. The reports suggest these onions were distributed in the markets in the first week of August.
The health officials from Canada have confirmed that there are 339 unique cases of onion linked salmonella infection. Almost all of these cases reported purchasing onions from a California based American supplier Thomson International. Up to 50 people among these infected persons are hospitalized in an emergency.
The U.S Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has confirmed 640 salmonella infections linked with onions. Nearly 100 of these people are receiving medical care and are hospitalized. This figure only represents the officially confirmed cases and there are high chances that there are more people affected by this infection.
Thomas International, the onion supplier has recalled its supplied onions which are shipped since May 2020 for the potential contamination by salmonella. While some grocery stores have also recalled raw onions and some of the prepared foods which may also be contaminated. Giant Eagle has called back the onions, salads, sandwiches, burgers, pizzas, and other foods that contain onions. The complete list of these foods is published online and can be viewed here.
Publix has also recalled its famous red onions which are packaged by the company Del Monte Fresh Produce. These onions are bulk sold in various stores of Florida, Alabama, Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, etc. But the recall has been from all stores except Florida-based stores.
Taylor Foods has also recalled its pre-cooked food over this contamination news. The recall also applies to some of the foods sold at Walmart, Kroger, etc.
Salmonella infection is caused by the salmonella bacteria which was first identified by Dr. Daniel E. Salmon back in 1885. The disease caused by salmonella is named salmonellosis but it may also cause a typhoid fever as well as paratyphoid fever in some patients.
The infection caused by this new salmonella outbreak may show up in the form of diarrhea, stomach pain, cramps, and fever. These symptoms start within five to six hours of eating contaminated food and may last for one week.
Some people may not experience any symptoms at all while others may take weeks to recover. The bacteria may also initiate infection in bones, blood, joints, urine, or the nervous system and cause severe disease outcomes.
Salmonella is not one bacterium but a type of bacteria that contains more than 2500 sub-types. However, only 100 of them are linked with diseases in humans, others are harmless for them.
A doctor is able to diagnose salmonella in the stool, tissue, or any fluid sample obtained from the patient.
The recovery rate from salmonella infection is high but many of them require urgent care and hospitalization. The body loses a major portion of water and salt in this condition that’s why doctors recommend drinking water excessively.
The severe cases of salmonella infection require antibiotic treatment especially those with underlying medical conditions, old age, or weak immune system.