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Highlights and Successes

These stories illustrate the work FoodCORE does to advance public health across the United States.

FoodCORE experts work to detect and respond to outbreaks, train professionals and strengthen health systems, and create programs that increase the safety of people's food, water, and environment. Read about some of the specific ways we do this below.


FoodCORE at the 2014 Joint Vision Meeting attendees.Spotlight on FoodCORE at the 2014 Joint Vision Meeting

A Joint Vision Meeting was held between the FoodCORE Program and the Integrated Food Safety Centers of Excellence (CoE) on October 27-30, 2014. Nearly 50 people attended the meeting in Denver, Colorado. The programs met individually but also convened a joint session to discuss building collaborations across both programs.

Award presented to Quyen Phan, MPH in recognition of exceptional service to OutbreakNet, 2013 Spotlight on FoodCORE at the 2013 InFORM Meeting

The Integrated Foodborne Outbreak Response and Management (InFORM) meeting is held for the purpose of bringing together laboratorians, epidemiologists and environmental health specialists involved with foodborne and enteric disease outbreak response. FoodCORE members were active participants at the InFORM Meeting in San Antonio on November 18–21, 2013.

Foodcore group photo Spotlight on the 2013 Vision Meeting

Nearly 50 people attended the 2013 FoodCORE Vision Meeting in Atlanta on May 15-16, 2013. There were productive discussions about a variety of topics. The FoodCORE centers were able to develop group consensus about ongoing and upcoming projects, including model practices, metrics reporting and collaborating with partners.



Young child playing in water. Tennessee FoodCORE Team Aims to Keep Splash Pads Safe and Fun

After linking a Salmonella outbreak to a splash pad in west Tennessee, the Tennessee FoodCORE team investigated splash pads across the state to identify their hazards and to prevent similar outbreaks. This investigation led the Tennessee Department of Health to develop guidance to help keep splash pads safer for people to enjoy.

Women at resturant using cell phone. Using Online Restaurant Reviews to Find Local Foodborne Outbreaks

Local health departments detect many foodborne outbreaks through illness complaint systems. Each year, the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s illness complaint system receives approximately 3,000 complaints, but it is likely that many more are never reported. Staff at DOHMH collaborated with Columbia University and Yelp, an online review site, to pilot a project to identify foodborne outbreaks that may go undetected through traditional complaint systems.

Image of chia seeds and powder.Asking the Right Questions Quickly from the Beginning

During an already busy summer in 2014, several FoodCORE centers proved once again to be instrumental during the investigation of a multistate outbreak of Salmonella infections – this time involving multiple Salmonella serotypes. PulseNet initially detected several ill people with a rare DNA fingerprint of Salmonella Newport and multiple health departments, including six FoodCORE centers, immediately began working with their federal partners on the investigation.

Baby laying on pillow Stopping a Salmonella Outbreak among Infants in a Nursery

In a quaint town along the South Carolina coast, an otherwise healthy 5 month old girl began to show signs of getting sick. After a few days of diarrhea, her condition worsened, and she started having blood in her stools. Her parents immediately took her to their pediatrician, where a stool sample revealed a Salmonella infection.

girl riding an intertube on a lake Wisconsin’s Public Health Sleuths Take to the Lake

In the summer of 2012, a Wisconsin lake was the site of an outbreak of gastrointestinal illnesses. Local public health officials at the Jackson County Health Department were quickly notified of these illnesses and started to investigate the situation. Early on, officials found that many of the sick people had been at the same outdoor recreation area the day before they got ill.

Graphic: FoodNet map FoodCORE and FoodNet: Complementary Collaborations in Connecticut

In 2012, CDC scientists monitored between 16 and 57 potential food poisoning clusters each week and investigated more than 200 multistate clusters nationwide. Two of CDC's food safety programs partner with 15 jurisdictions to get ahead of stubborn foodborne outbreaks: FoodCORE and FoodNet.

Photo of a cow Tennessee Detectives Investigate an Outbreak of Cryptosporidium

In the summer of 2012, public health officials in Tennessee were notified that a group of volunteers were sick with gastroenteritis. The volunteers were from multiple states and had traveled to Tennessee to work on a farm. Tennessee officials collaborated with several other states to figure out what caused the illness.

Graphic: University of FoodCORE logo "U" niversity partnerships-at the core of FoodCORE

It's hard to imagine that simply having students talk with patients about chicken livers, raw milk, and sprouts could help protect our food supply and save lives, but it's true. These students have become integral in identifying the culprits in outbreaks of foodborne illness across the country.

Photo: Computer keyboard keys Ohio Uses Social Media to Help Protect People from Norovirus

Foodborne Diseases Centers for Outbreak Response Enhancement (FoodCORE) played a key role in solving a 2012 multistate outbreak of Salmonella Bareilly and Nchanga infections.

Photo: Raw Scraped Ground Tuna Helping Solve Salmonella Outbreak Mysteries

Foodborne Diseases Centers for Outbreak Response Enhancement (FoodCORE) played a key role in solving a 2012 multistate outbreak of Salmonella Bareilly and Nchanga infections.

Photo: Group picture of New York City's 'Team Salmonella' New York City's "Team Salmonella" Successful in Solving an Outbreak

In August 2011, public health officials began an investigation into a Salmonella outbreak in which many cases resided in New York. An in-depth investigation was conducted by the New York City Department of Mental Health and Hygiene (NYCDOHMH), who is a partner in the FoodCORE project.

Photo: Blocks of Queso Fresco cheese Utah Solves a Two-year Outbreak Mystery

For over 2 years, public health officials in Utah struggled with a Salmonella outbreak linked to queso fresco.

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