Over 200 million eggs recalled due to Salmonella

Before you break out the frying pan this morning for your sunny-side-up breakfast, be sure to check out this recent food recall notice: nearly 207 million eggs were voluntarily recalled Friday due to possible contamination with the pathogenic bacteria Salmonella.

“Consumers who have purchased shell eggs are urged to immediately discontinue use of the recalled eggs and to return them to the place of purchase for a full refund,” the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said.

At least 22 people had been reported sick when the recall was first issued. The recalled eggs were produced by farm in Indiana, and distributed under multiple brand names to supermarkets and restaurants in Colorado, Florida, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Virginia and West Virginia. If you’re concerned about a carton of eggs in your refrigerator, look for the plant number P-1065 and Julian date range of 011 through 102 printed on the side of the package.

Salmonella can cause fever, diarrhea, vomiting and abdominal pain anywhere between six and 72 hours after a person has eaten contaminated food. Usually, the symptoms pass without treatment after a few days (be sure to drink plenty of fluids, though), but the infection has a higher risk of being severe in young children, elderly people, and anyone who already has a weakened immune system due to a medical condition. In the worst cases, it can be fatal.

The bacteria is a big concern with eggs and poultry. Chickens carrying Salmonella can pass the bacteria to eggs while they’re still in the body, before the shell is formed. The bacteria can also be carried in bird feces, which can contaminate eggs after they are laid. Rarely is it transferred between humans.

Salmonella safety

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offer a few kitchen safety tips for consumers to avoid Salmonella poisoning.

  • Don’t eat raw or undercooked eggs, poultry or meat. Watch out for foods that include raw eggs as an ingredient.
  • Avoid cross-contamination of foods by keeping raw meat separate from other foods.
  • Wash hands, utensils and cutting boards after touching different uncooked food items. Also wash your hands after handling animals.
  • Keep an eye on temperature — make sure foods are refrigerated when they need to be cool, and cooked to a hot enough internal temperature before eating.

Neogen offers rapid testing methods for detecting Salmonella and other pathogens, as well as many other essential food safety solutions.

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