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Multistate Outbreak of Salmonella I 4,[5],12:i:- Infections Linked to Pot Pies (Final Update)

Posted October 29, 2007

This outbreak appears to be over. However, Salmonella is an important cause of human illness in the United States. More information about Salmonella, and steps people can take to reduce their risk of infection, can be found on the CDC Salmonella Web Page.

 

Cases of Salmonella I 4,[5],12:i:- infection with the outbreak strain, by state

CDC is collaborating with public health officials in multiple states across the United States and with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service to investigate an ongoing multi-state outbreak of Salmonella I 4,[5],12:i:- (pronounced "four five twelve eye minus") infections in humans. An investigation that used interviews comparing foods eaten by ill and well persons is showing that eating Banquet brand pot pies produced by the ConAgra Foods company is the likely source of the illness.

Between January 1, 2007 and October 29, 2007, at least 272 isolates of Salmonella I 4,[5],12:i:- with an indistinguishable genetic fingerprint have been collected from ill persons in 35 states. Ill persons whose Salmonella strain has this genetic fingerprint have been reported from Arizona (1 person), Arkansas (4), California (18), Colorado (9), Connecticut (7), Delaware (5), Florida (2), Georgia (2), Idaho (11), Illinois (7), Indiana (3), Iowa (1), Kansas (4), Kentucky (9), Massachusetts (7), Maryland (7), Maine (2), Michigan (3), Minnesota (7), Missouri (18), Montana (6), Nevada (6), New York (10), North Carolina (2), Ohio (11), Oklahoma (1), Oregon (4), Pennsylvania (18), Tennessee (6), Texas (4), Utah (12), Virginia (9), Vermont (2), Washington (27), Wisconsin (24), Wyoming (3). Their ages range from <1 to 89 years with a median age of 18 years; 51% of ill persons are female. At least 65 people have been hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.

Investigation of the Outbreak

CDC coordinated a case-control study designed to identify the source of these infections. For this study, a case was defined as Salmonella infection on or after August 1, 2007, with a strain that had the outbreak genetic fingerprint. Eating a Banquet brand pot pie was significantly associated with illness. State health departments are collecting and testing pot pie products recovered from patients’ homes. To date, three patients’ pot pies have yielded Salmonella I 4,[5],12:i:- isolates with a genetic fingerprint indistinguishable from the outbreak pattern.

Clinical features

Most people infected with Salmonella develop diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps 12–72 hours after infection. Infection is usually diagnosed by culture of a stool sample. The illness usually lasts 4 – 7 days. Although most people recover without treatment, severe infections may occur. Infants, elderly persons, and people with impaired immune systems are more likely than others to develop severe illness. In severe infection, Salmonella spreads from the intestines to the bloodstream and then to other body sites, and death can occur if the person is not treated promptly with antibiotics.

Advice to consumers

On October 11, 2007, ConAgra Foods issued a voluntary recall of frozen pot pies that may be linked to this outbreak. The following brands of frozen pot pie products are subject to this recall:

  • Banquet
  • Albertson’s (sold at Albertson’s)
  • Food Lion (sold at Food Lion)
  • Great Value (sold at Wal-Mart)
  • Hill Country Fare (sold at HEB)
  • Kirkwood (sold at Aldi)
  • Kroger (sold at Kroger)
  • Meijer (sold at Meijer)
  • Western Family (now discontinued; previously sold at a variety of small retailers)

These frozen pot pies include all varieties in 7 oz. single serving packages bearing an establishment number "P-9" or "Est. 1059" printed on the side of the package. These frozen pot pie products were distributed to retail establishments throughout the United States, Puerto Rico, and the Caribbean islands. These products could still be in consumers’ freezers, so it is important that consumers look for and return or discard these products.

Consumers should not eat these products.

U.S. Department of Agriculture Food Safety and Inspection Service recall notice

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