At least 120 people in 22 states have been sickened with Salmonella infections after eating ground beef sold in several large chain stores including Walmart and Sam’s Club, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. About 6.5 million pounds of the raw meat, distributed by JBS Tolleson Inc., of Arizona, was recalled earlier this month after the contamination was identified.
Among the 120 sickened, 33 have been hospitalized with severe infections. To date, no deaths have been reported. Most people infected with Salmonella develop diarrhea, fever and stomach cramps 12 to 72 hours after being exposed to the bacteria. The illness usually lasts 4 to 7 days. Most people recover without treatment.
But in some people, the diarrhea may be so severe that the person needs to be hospitalized. Salmonella infection may spread from the intestines to the bloodstream and then to other places in the body. Children younger than 5 years, adults older than 65, and people with weakened immune systems are more likely to have a severe illness.
Affected raw ground beef products were produced and packaged from July 26, 2018, to Sept. 7, 2018, and were shipped to retailers nationwide under various brand names, including Cedar River Farms, Gourmet Burger, Grass Run Farms Natural Beef, JBS Generic, Showcase and Showcase/Walmart. Affected packages are labeled with the establishment number “EST. 267.” This number is usually found inside the USDA mark of inspection. A full list of affected ground beef including brand names and stores where the beef was sold can be found on the USDA-FSIS website.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) urges consumers not to eat the meat and to return it to the store where it was purchased or throw it away. Restaurants and retailers are advised to not serve or sell the recalled beef products and to check their inventories.
The CDC, public health and regulatory officials in several states, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service are continuing to investigate this outbreak.
USDA News Release