Tainted California Chicken: Foster Farms Continues To Make People Sick?
The antibiotic-resistant salmonella that has been linked to a chicken producer in California continues to make people sick over a year after the outbreak.
Despite the outbreak and the illnesses, Foster Farms has not declared a recall of their chickens. According to a report from the Centers for Disease Control, there were 50 new reported illnesses within the past 2 months, which brings the total number of affected people to 574. Reports also said that of the 574, most live in California.
— KGW News (@KGWNews) May 28, 2014
There are three Foster Farms in California, and 77 percent of people affected come from the state.
The outbreak began on May 27 last year, and 37 percent of those affected have been confined in hospitals. About 13 percent were said to have infections in their blood that amount to three times the infection brought by regular salmonella.
Foster Farms said in their defense, “Foster Farms is committed to leadership in food safety and producing the safest chicken on the West Coast.”
According to the Agriculture Department, they are meticulously monitoring the operations of Foster Farms. Their measurements conclude that salmonella from the company’s products have a lower rate now.
After last year’s outbreak, the Agriculture Department threatened to shut down Foster Farms’ operations, but allowed them to continue their business, as they said that they made changes in their operations in order to lower the rate of salmonella.
Last year’s salmonella outbreak
Some of the operational changes they made include improved safety on their farms where the chickens are raised, and stricter screening of the birds. They have also improved their sanitation practices.
The company released a statement that addresses the new reported cases. They said that the increase of salmonella may be caused by the warm weather.
This is not the first time Foster Farms has dealt with a salmonella problem. In 2004, they were linked to the infection, and then again in 2012.
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