CDC: 3 cases of salmonella in MO linked to alfalfa sprouts

Published: Feb. 24, 2016 at 7:41 PM CST|Updated: Feb. 24, 2016 at 7:48 PM CST
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MISSOURI (KFVS) - A Salmonella out break that has sickened 13 people in four states is reportedly linked to alfalfa sprouts from Sweet Water Farms of Kansas, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The number of people who have been sickened by the recent outbreak include five in Kansas, three in Missouri, three in Oklahoma and two in Pennsylvania.

Five patients were hospitalized, but no deaths have been reported.

The patients that have been affected range in age from 18 to 73, and they all reportedly became ill between Dec. 1, 2015 and Jan. 21, 2016.

Illnesses that began after Jan. 31 might not yet be reported because it takes an average of two to four weeks between the time a person becomes ill and when the illness is reported, the CDC said.

Both state and local health and regulatory officials performed traceback investigations from five different restaurants where the people who were sickened ate the reportedly contaminated the sprouts.

These investigations indicated that Sweetwater Farms supplied the contaminated sprouts to all five locations, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Laboratory testing isolated Salmonella from samples of irrigation water and alfalfa sprouts collected during an inspection at Sweetwater Farms. Further testing is ongoing to determine the type and DNA fingerprint of Salmonella found in the collected samples.

The information available to date indicates that alfalfa sprouts that have come from Sweetwater Farms may be contaminated with Salmonella and are not safe to eat.

On Friday Feb. 19, the Kansas Department of Health and Environment issued a press release warning consumers not to eat sprouts from Sweetwater Farms.

The CDC recommends that consumers not eat, and restaurants and other retailers to not sell or serve alfalfa sprouts that have been produced by Sweetwater Farms at this time.

This investigation is ongoing, and the CDC will update the public as more information becomes available.

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