The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has expanded a Costco chicken salad recall after authorities discovered that contaminated celery was to blame. The recall has been expanded to include over a dozen states and more than 155,000 products. Among the stores affected by the recall are Safeway, Walmart, Albertsons, Sam's Club, 7-Eleven and Target. The FDA made the recall announcement on Wednesday.
Recall Expanded out of an Abundance of Caution
The issue began with an E. coli-contaminated chicken salad product at Costco. Then the problem was tracked down to celery from Taylor Farms Pacific, Inc., a vegetable producer based in Tracy, California. The company has since recalled its diced onion and celery mix, which was included in Costco chicken salads and other Costco products. Now the FDA has included other grocery store chains in the recall out of an abundance of caution.
Nineteen people in six different states have been sickened as a result of the contaminated food product, which is said to contain the toxin-producing bacteria, E. coli. The particular strain of E. coli in this case is know as Shiga E. coli.
E. Coli Poisoning Can Be Deadly
In severe cases, E. coli poisoning can be deadly. Fortunately, no deaths have been reported from the contaminated celery thus far, but five victims were hospitalized and two of them suffered kidney failure. The victims range in age from five to 84. People who suffer E. coli infection usually experience abdominal cramps, diarrhea, vomiting and nausea. Symptoms usually develop within three to seven days after infection.
The U.S. Centers for Desease Control and Prevention (CDC) expect that more people will contract E. coli poisoning from this outbreak in the weeks to come because a lot of people may have these recalled and dangerous products in their refrigerators unknowingly. Consumers are being asked to throw away affected products immediately. Consumers sickened by affected products may also wish to speak with a personal injury attorney to seek damages relating to the costs of their medical care.
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