CDC Issues Food Safety Alert Over Multistate E. coli Outbreak Linked to Raw Cheddar Cheese

RAW FARM brand raw cheddar cheeseSubmitted Image

WASHINGTON, D.C. — In a recent food safety alert, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has reported a multistate outbreak of E. coli infections linked to RAW FARM brand raw cheddar cheese. The agency is urging consumers and businesses to refrain from eating, selling, or serving this product while the investigation is ongoing.

According to the CDC, ten people from four states have been infected with the outbreak strain of E. coli. Of these cases, four individuals were hospitalized, and one developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a serious condition that can lead to kidney failure. Thankfully, no deaths have been reported thus far.

The CDC’s investigation revealed a common link among these cases. All six individuals who could recall the details of the raw milk cheese they consumed reported eating RAW FARM brand raw cheddar cheese. In response to these findings, RAW FARM LLC has agreed to recall products and is currently working in conjunction with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

To prevent further spread of the infection, the CDC has issued several recommendations for people and businesses:

  • Refrain from selling or serving RAW FARM brand raw cheddar cheese.
  • Thoroughly wash and sanitize any items and surfaces that may have come into contact with the contaminated cheese.
  • Seek immediate medical attention if experiencing severe E. coli symptoms.
  • Clean any surfaces and containers that may have touched these products using hot soapy water or a dishwasher.

E. coli infections typically present with symptoms such as severe stomach cramps, diarrhea (often bloody), and vomiting, usually starting 3 to 4 days after swallowing the bacteria. While most people recover without treatment within 5 to 7 days, some may develop serious complications like HUS, necessitating hospitalization. Signs of HUS include decreased frequency of urination, extreme fatigue, and a loss of pink color in the cheeks and inside the lower eyelids.

READ:  CDC Tightens Dog Import Rules to Safeguard Public Health

The CDC’s alert underscores the importance of food safety and the potential health risks associated with consuming raw or undercooked products. The agency is actively working to investigate the source of the outbreak and prevent further cases.

This incident serves as a stark reminder for consumers and businesses alike to exercise caution when dealing with raw products. Proper food preparation and handling techniques are crucial in preventing foodborne illnesses such as E. coli.

For more information about E. coli, individuals can visit the E. coli Questions and Answers page on the CDC’s website. Those with questions about cases in a specific state are encouraged to contact their state’s health department.

In conclusion, as the investigation into this E. coli outbreak continues, it is vital that consumers heed the CDC’s advice. Vigilance and proactive measures can help protect individuals and their communities from the spread of this potentially serious infection.

For the latest news on everything happening in Chester County and the surrounding area, be sure to follow MyChesCo on Google News and Microsoft Start.