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The major salmonella outbreak that has so far infected 650 people in 37 states finally has a confirmed origin. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have been investigating the culprit of the outbreak for weeks, leading them to pinpoint an import of fresh onions from Mexico as the source of the infection.
The onions are imported by ProSource Produce Inc., an Idaho-based provider of fresh onions, potatoes, and apples for wholesale, and sourced from Chihuahua, Mexico. The company has agreed to voluntarily recall several varieties of red, yellow, and white onions from the market, which were sold to restaurants and grocery stores throughout the United States. However, according to some sources, the FDA still hasn't confirmed whether the items were available to customers through grocery stores.
The agencies are continuing their investigation into the source of the contamination and any additional products or companies that may be linked to the outbreak.
"Epidemiologic and traceback data show that illnesses in this outbreak are linked to whole red, white and yellow onions distributed by ProSource Inc. that were imported from Chihuahua, Mexico. Investigators are working to determine if other onions or suppliers are linked to this outbreak," said the CDC's latest update.
Restaurants, retailers, and consumers are advised not to eat, sell, or serve red, yellow, and white onions supplied by ProSource Inc. that were imported from the State of Chihuahua, Mexico from July 1, 2021 through August 27, 2021, or products containing these onions. If the origin of onions can't be determined, not consuming and throwing them out is the safest way to go, according to the agencies.
The outbreak has drastically grown in scope since it was first identified earlier this year, and now includes 650 people in 37 states. About 30% of those infected required hospitalization, which is a higher than normal percentage for Salmonella infections, according to Food Safety News.
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