(Food Safety News)– An outbreak of Salmonella Reading caused by raw turkey products has sickened 90 people in 26 states and hospitalization was already required in 44.4 percent of those cases, the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta announced Thursday.
With the CDC announcement, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) said it is continuing to work with its federal partners to monitor a Salmonella Reading outbreak that may be associated with raw turkey products.
The agency said it has not identified a single source for this outbreak “at this time.”
FSIS reminded consumers to wash their hands thoroughly after handling any raw meat and poultry products, cook these products to the safe recommended temperature, and use a food thermometer.
Forty people have been hospitalized in the outbreak, which to date has not included any deaths.
Epidemiologic and laboratory evidence from CDC indicates that raw turkey products from a variety of sources are contaminated with Salmonella Reading and are making people sick.
In interviews, CDC said ill people report eating different types and brands of turkey products purchased from many different locations. Two ill people lived in a household 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.
Like FSIS, CDC said a single, common supplier of raw turkey products or of live turkeys has not been identified.
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, according to report.