Organic eggs were recalled in three states following six diagnosed cases of salmonella.
The organic egg recall last week in Minnesota following six cases of salmonella highlights how the government’s financial struggles impact day-to-day operations as well as consumers.The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) traced the salmonella cases to the Larry Schultz Organic Farm in Owattona, Minn., which distributed eggs to restaurants, grocery stores, food wholesalers and food service

Consumer Recall Safety - Eggs

Organic eggs were recalled in three states following six diagnosed cases of salmonella.

companies in Minnesota, Michigan and Wisconsin.

Siobhan DeLancey, press officer with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said that the month between the time of diagnosed cases until the recall was announced on Oct. 19 was likely spent on testing and identifying the strain of salmonella and having epidemiologists in Minnesota trace the cases back to the Larry Schultz Organic Farm.

State officials pinpointed the strain of salmonella in six individuals between Aug. 12 and Sept. 24 before sourcing the eggs from the farm. Kirk Smith, supervisor of the Minnesota foodborne diseases unit, said that for every reported, diagnosed case of salmonella, there are about 29 that go unreported, putting Minnesota’s probable total for salmonella cases connected to this egg recall somewhere between 150 and 200.

Smith said there are about 700 confirmed cases of salmonella a year in Minnesota but only 15 percent of those are tied to a specific cause of outbreak.That percentage could be higher, he said, if the government had more money.

Consumer Recall Safety - Salmonella

Salmonella can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in very young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems.

The public health infrastructure and our ability to investigate and prevent outbreaks “has really been eroding for 5-10 years because of financial struggles,” said Smith. “There are probably outbreaks like this that happen all the time that we can’t detect.”

Smith wasn’t able to comment on whether or not all recalled eggs were removed from the stream of commerce as of this week, and calls to other MDH departments were not returned by the time of publication.

Minnesota could see more cases of salmonella connected to this recall, since the pathogen can exist inside a chicken’s ovaries and be transferred into the eggs we eat, meaning proper cooking is extremely important for safe food prep.

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See details on the recall including brand and sell-by dates in our marketplace.