CDC wraps up chicken salad Salmonella outbreak probe

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) late last week announced a close to a Salmonella outbreak investigation tied to prepared chicken salad sold in Midwestern grocery stores. A total of 265 people in eight states were sickened during this outbreak, including 1 death and 94 hospitalizations.

That's 95 more cases, and one more state, since the CDC's previous outbreak update on Mar 8.

The vast majority of illnesses occurred in Iowa, which reported 240 cases. Other states reporting illnesses were Illinois (10), Nebraska (5), Minnesota (4), and South Dakota (3). Indiana, Mississippi, and Wisconsin each reported 1 case.

Fareway grocery stores across the upper Midwest sold the tainted chicken salad from Jan 4, 2018, to Feb 9, 2018. Triple T Specialty Meats, the producer of the chicken salad based in Ackley, Iowa, recalled 20,630 pounds of ready-to-eat chicken salad products that may have been contaminated with Salmonella Typhimurium on Feb 21.

"The recalled chicken salad was sold in containers of various weights from the deli at Fareway grocery stores in Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, Nebraska, and South Dakota," the CDC said. "CDC recommends people do not eat any remaining recalled chicken salad sold at Fareway grocery stores, including any that has been frozen. Throw it away or return it to the place of purchase," the CDC said.

87% of patients ate chicken salad

During epidemiologic investigations, 194 (87%) of 222 people interviewed reported eating chicken salad purchased from Fareway grocery stores in the weeks preceding illness. Ill people ranged in age from less than 1 year to 89 years, and 67% of people were female.

Whole genome sequencing did not identify predicted antibiotic resistance in 112 of 127 isolates tested by the CDC, including 110 samples from ill people and 2 from food. Though 15 isolates contained some resistance genes, the CDC said it is unlikely to affected treatment for most people, but some infections might be hard to treat with the usual drugs, and some people might require a different antibiotic.

Standard antibiotic resistance testing by the CDC's National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System on clinical isolates from three sick people didn't reveal resistance to any antibiotics that were tested.

Officials from the Iowa Department of Public Health and the Iowa Department of Inspections were the first to identify the contaminated chicken salad, after collecting samples from Fareway stores for lab testing in February.

See also:

Apr 6 CDC statement

Mar 8 CIDRAP News scan "105 more sickened in Salmonella outbreak linked to chicken salad"

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