At least six multistate foodborne illness outbreaks are going on now, according to federal health officials, prompting recalls aimed at preventing further problems.
There are also a number of food recalls due to potential illness, although no known illnesses have been reported, according to the US Food and Drug Administration.
Here’s what to stay away from.
As a precaution, McDonald’s has stopped selling salads in 3,000 locations in 14 states to try to contain an outbreak of cyclospora illness.
The states no longer selling these salads are Illinois, Iowa, Indiana, Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, Minnesota, Nebraska, South Dakota, Montana, North Dakota, Kentucky, West Virginia and Missouri.
To date, 395 cases have been confirmed in 15 states since May 1, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The cyclospora parasite causes intestinal illness as a result of consuming contaminated food or water. Symptoms can begin a week or more after consuming the parasite. They include diarrhea and frequent, sometimes explosive bowel movements, according to the CDC. Those who are infected might also experience loss of appetite, weight loss, stomach cramps or pain, nausea, gas and fatigue. Vomiting, headache, fever, body aches and flu-like symptoms can also occur.
The illness can last from a few days to a few months, and patients might feel better but then get worse again. Patients can be treated with antibiotics.
The outbreak investigation found the parasite in a sample of Fresh Express salad mix of romaine lettuce and carrots that had been distributed by the restaurant chain.
Salads and wraps
The US Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service warned consumers not to buy more than two dozen salads and wraps sold at major grocery chains due to cyclospora.
This is because of lettuce from the same Fresh Express lot implicated in the McDonald’s salad outbreak.
The recalled items include certain beef, pork and poultry salads and wraps that were sold at Kroger, Trader Joe’s, Walgreens and other stores. They were distributed by Caito Foods LLC of Indianapolis.
“Fresh Express also reported that no romaine lettuce from the lot that was positive for cyclospora was packaged for direct retail sale to consumers,” the CDC said.
Before you grab something off that vegetable tray, make sure it hasn’t been recalled.
The FDA is investigating at least 237 cases of cyclospora illnesses linked to recalled Del Monte Fresh vegetable trays. The trays contained broccoli, cauliflower, carrots and dill dip, and they were sold in Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois and Indiana.
“FDA has not identified which of the ingredients is the vehicle for this outbreak; each component of these vegetable trays is under consideration,” the agency said.
Cyclospora cayetanensis is a microscopic parasite that contaminates food or water and, when ingested, causes an intestinal illness. Symptoms include diarrhea, with sometimes explosive bowel movements, loss of appetite, weight loss, stomach cramps, bloating, nausea and fatigue.
Federal health officials said this is not related to the Fresh Express recall and outbreak.
Hy-Vee, a Midwestern grocery store chain, has recalled a pasta salad linked to at least 79 cases of salmonella illness. Hy-Vee, based in Iowa, sold the 1-pound and 3-pound plastic containers of Spring Pasta Salad in eight states.
The states are Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wisconsin. All of those states except Wisconsin have reported illnesses. In addition, people have reported being sick from this salad in Tennessee and North Dakota.
“The Spring Pasta Salad includes shell pasta, carrots, celery, cucumbers, green pepper, onion, and mayonnaise,” according to the CDC. It salad was produced between June 1 and July 13. The packages have expiration dates between June 22 and August 3.
Symptoms of salmonella begin 12 to 72 hours after a person is infected and include diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramping. This can last about four to seven days, and most individuals recover without treatment. However, those who develop severe diarrhea may need to be hospitalized. Those who are very young, who are very old or who have compromised immune systems are most at risk for complications and severe cases of illness.
Salmonella is the culprit in 90 illnesses linked to raw turkey products, according to the CDC and the USDA.
The illnesses have been reported in 26 states since November. But health officials have not identified a brand, product or supplier as the source of the outbreak. Therefore, no recall has been issued.
Patients who have been interviewed reported 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 CDC said.
In addition, samples of raw turkey pet food, raw turkey products and live turkeys have tested positive for the outbreak strain of salmonella, which could mean the outbreak is “widespread in the turkey industry,” the CDC said.
The advice for consumers is to cook turkey thoroughly, wash hands before and after handling turkey, and be careful when touching and handling turkey to prevent spreading contamination.
Kellogg’s Honey Smacks cereal
Federal health officials want you to toss out all boxes of Kellogg’s Honey Smacks. The warning is due to an outbreak of salmonella that has left 100 people sick in 33 states.
The cereal was recalled June 14, but one month later, another warning not to eat the cereal was issued after the FDA said it was aware that the product was still available.
“Retailers cannot legally offer the cereal for sale and consumers should not purchase Kellogg’s Honey Smacks cereal,” the agency said.
Flowers Foods announced a recall of Swiss rolls because they may be contaminated with salmonella. The ingredient whey powder was recalled for possible contamination. There have been no reports of illness from Swiss rolls, according to the company.Swiss rolls sold nationwide under the brand names Mrs. Freshley’s, Food Lion, H-E-B, Baker’s Treat, Market Square and Great Value have been recalled. Captain John Derst’s Old Fashioned Bread distributed in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina has also been recalled, the company said.
Ritz Cracker Sandwiches
Mondelēz Global LLC announced a recall of certain Ritz Cracker Sandwiches and other Ritz Bits products because they contain whey powder that has been recalled for possible salmonella contamination. The products are available nationwide.
The recalled product list includes Ritz Bits cheese cracker sandwiches and mixed cookie and cracker variety packs.
The recall is a precaution, as no complaints of illness have been reported, the company said.
Pepperidge Farm issued a recall of four varieties of Goldfish crackers distributed nationwide: Flavor Blasted Xtra Cheddar, Flavor Blasted Sour Cream & Onion, Goldfish Baked with Whole Grain Xtra Cheddar and Goldfish Mix Xtra Cheddar + Pretzel.
Whey powder is also an ingredient in a seasoning “applied to” these items, according to the company.
No illnesses have been reported.
Hungry Man Chipotle BBQ Sauced Boneless Chicken Wyngz meals
Pinnacle Foods Inc. recalled 15.25-ounce Hungry Man Chipotle BBQ Sauced Boneless Chicken Wyngz meals with a best by date of September 6, 2019. The recalled frozen microwavable dinners have the establishment number “EST. P138” or “P-138” on the package. They were shipped to retailers in Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and Virginia.
The recall is due to whey powder used in ranch dressing that is a seasoning in the mashed potatoes and with the boneless chicken that are part of the meals.
Turkey and Swiss sandwiches
Listeria has prompted a recall of one type of sub sandwiches by Lipari Foods LLC. The recall is for Premo Brand and Fresh Grab brand turkey and Swiss submarine sandwiches that were produced July 17. They were sold at retailers in Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Wisconsin and West Virginia.
The subs in question were packaged by JLM, a Lipari sister company, according to the recall notice.
Listeria is primarily a problem for pregnant women because it can lead to miscarriage. The illness also affects newborns, the elderly and people with compromised immune systems. It can cause sepsis if it gets into the bloodstream or encephalitis, an infection in the brain, according to the CDC.
Symptoms include diarrhea and fever, but those who are infected may not be diagnosed.
People become sick by eating contaminated food. The company said no illnesses have been reported.
Imported crab meat
Avoid eating fresh crab meat from Venezuela. That’s the advice from the FDA due to an outbreak of Vibrio parahaemolyticus that started in April. In all, 12 illnesses have been reported in Maryland, Pennsylvania, Louisiana and the District of Columbia.
“This product is commonly found in plastic tubs and may be labeled as ‘pre-cooked,’ ” the FDA said in its outbreak announcement.
Symptoms usually begin 24 hours after consuming the bacteria. They include diarrhea, vomiting, nausea, fever and abdominal pain. Twelve people have become sick.