Raw ground turkey behind Salmonella outbreak—CDC

A twelve-state outbreak of Salmonella infections has been linked to raw ground turkey meat, according to a US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) investigation report released today (April 12, 2021).

Scope of the outbreak

At least twenty-eight (28) cases of Salmonella Hadar with symptom onset dates between December 28, 2020, to March 4, 2021 were reported in the following states:

  • Arizona (1)
  • Connecticut (1)
  • Indiana (1)
  • Maine (1)
  • Massachusetts (7)
  • Missouri (1)
  • New Hampshire (1)
  • New Jersey (2)
  • New York (4)
  • North Carolina (3)
  • Pennsylvania (4)
  • Virginia (2)

Although two of the outbreak victims were hospitalized, there have been no deaths.

Epidemiological, laboratory and traceback data have linked the cases to raw, ground turkey products that were produced on December 18, 2020 through December 29, 2020.

Public Health Alert

The US Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) issued a Public Health Alert for approximately 211,406 pounds of raw ground turkey products, produced by Plainville Brands, LLC (Pennsylvania) after the outbreak strain was recovered from an intact package of Plainville Brands’ ground turkey.

The alert encompasses the following items, all of which bear the establishment number EST. P-244 inside the USDA mark of inspection:

  • 1-lb. packages of Nature’s Promise Free from 94% LEAN | 6% FAT Ground Turkey with Use by/freeze/sell by date of 1/1/21, 1/3/21,1/4/21, 1/8/21 and 1/10/21 on the front of the package.
  • 1-lb. packages of Wegman 94% LEAN | 6% FAT Ground Turkey with Use by/freeze/sell by date of 1/3/21, 1/4/21, 1/8/21 and 1/10/21 on the front of the package.
  • 3-lb. packages of Wegman 94% LEAN | 6% FAT Ground Turkey with Use by/freeze/sell by date of 1/3/21, 1/4/21, 1/8/21 and 1/10/21 on the front of the package.
  • 1-lb. packages of Plainville Farms Ground White Turkey 93% | 7% Fat with Use by/freeze/sell by date of 1/10/21 on the front of the package.

All of the suspect packages have passed their Use by/freeze/sell by dates, and are believed to no longer be available for purchase. However, consumers may still have some of the implicated packages in their home freezers.

Not all of the outbreak cases have shown a direct link to raw ground turkey products from Plainville Brands. FSIS warns consumers that other raw ground turkey products may also be a source of some illnesses. It is possible that more recalls and/or public health alerts may follow.

What consumers need to know

  • Most people infected with Salmonella experience diarrhea, fever and stomach cramps, beginning six hours to six days after being exposed. Most infected individuals recover without treatment in a week or less; however some people may experience more severe illnesses and may require medical treatment or hospitalization.
  • Consumers should check their freezers and discard any of the products listed in the FSIS Public Health Alert, and disinfect any surfaces with which these products may have come into contact.
  • Food handlers, whether in the home or in a commercial establishment, should take extreme care when preparing and cooking any raw ground poultry meat, including raw ground turkey, as these products carry a high risk of being contaminated with Salmonella.

Plainville’s response

Plainville issued the following statement in response to the FSIS Public Health Alert:

As a proud provider of natural and certified organic foods, the

health and safety of our customers is essential to who we are as a

company. We are providing any assistance requested by health and

safety officials. We are proud of our health and safety record and

protocols, and are honored that generations of families have trusted

Plainville and welcomed us into their homes.”

Tom Donovan, Vice President of Plainville Brands, LLC

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