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Two new cases related to Salmonella outbreak associated with certain fresh tomatoes confirmed

June 19, 2008: The Michigan Department of Community Health (MDCH) has confirmed two new cases in connection with the current Salmonella Saintpaul outbreak that has occurred in multiple states and is associated with the consumption of fresh tomatoes.

The new cases bring the total to four confirmed cases in Michigan. The two new cases are a 48 year-old female from Shiawassee County and a 23 year-old female from Kent County. The previous cases are a 46 year-old male in Kent County and a 29 year-old female in Washtenaw County. All residents are recovering and none were hospitalized.

At this time, preliminary information suggests that certain types of fresh tomatoes—raw red plum, red Roma, and red round tomatoes, and products containing these raw, red tomatoes—may be the possible cause of this outbreak.

Consumers should continue not to eat raw red Roma, raw red plum, raw red round tomatoes, or products that contain these types of raw red tomatoes. Consumers should continue to eat cherry tomatoes, grape tomatoes, and tomatoes sold with the vine still attached, or tomatoes grown at home.

The Michigan Department of Agriculture is working in close cooperation with federal food safety partners to advise Michigan’s food industry and consumers to take necessary precautions regarding certain fresh tomatoes. MDCH continues to work in cooperation with federal and local health authorities in Michigan to identify and investigate illnesses that may be associated with this outbreak.

Salmonella can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections particularly in young children, frail or elderly people, and those with weakened immune systems. Healthy persons often experience fever, diarrhea (which may be bloody), nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain. In rare circumstances, the organism can get into the bloodstream and produce more severe illnesses.

Consumers who have recently eaten raw tomatoes or foods containing raw tomatoes and are experiencing any of these symptoms should contact their health care provider. All Salmonella infections should be reported to state or local health authorities.

For more information, please visit MDA’s Web site at: www.michigan.gov/mda or the FDA’s Web site at: http://www.fda.gov/oc/opacom/hottopics/tomatoes.html#retailers or the CDC Web site at: http://www.cdc.gov/salmonella/saintpaul/






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