557 Cyclospora Food Poisonings Linked to Bagged Salad Mix

August 15, 2013 — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has reported that 557 cases of Cyclospora food poisoning have occurred in 19 states. Texas is the hardest-hit state, with 225 infections reported. The outbreak has been linked to bagged salad mix that was produced by Taylor Farms de Mexico and sold at restaurants in the United States.

States involved in the cyclospora outbreak include:

Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York (including New York City), Ohio, Texas, Virginia, and Wisconsin.

Cyclospora infections were linked to bagged salad mixes from Taylor Farms on July 30, 2013. FDA investigators confirmed that the salad mix identified by Iowa and Nebraska health departments was supplied to restaurants, including Olive Garden and Red Lobster. Health departments believe the contaminated salad is no longer in the food supply, because the last reported illnesses occurred in early July.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has announced that Taylor Farms de Mexico halted production and shipping of salad mixes, leafy greens, and salad mix components from Mexico to the United States on August 9.

Products included in the action:

  • Salad mix
  • Iceberg lettuce
  • Romaine lettuce
  • Green leaf lettuce
  • Red cabbage
  • Green cabbage
  • Carrots

Cyclospora cayetanensis is a single-celled parasite that is transmitted to humans through the fecal-oral route. The time between becoming infected and becoming sick is usually about 1 week. Cyclospora infects the small intestine and causes severe gastrointestinal symptoms, including diarrhea, bloating, increased gas, abdominal pain, nausea, fatigue, body aches, fever, and more.

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