Reports of Selected Campylobacter Outbreak Investigations

How common are Campylobacter outbreaks?

Campylobacter outbreaks are not commonly reported, considering how often people get sick from this bacteria, but the frequency has been increasing. The average number of outbreaks reported each year from 2004 through 2009 was 22; it was 31 from 2010 through 2012 and 29 from 2013 through 2017.

What causes Campylobacter outbreaks?

Poultry, raw milk, and untreated water have been the most commonly identified sources of Campylobacter outbreaks. From 2010 through 2017, state, local, and territorial public health agencies reported 236 foodborne Campylobacter outbreaks, accounting for 2,381 illnesses, to CDC’s Foodborne Disease Outbreak Surveillance System.

Outbreaks caused by Campylobacter, by food category, 2010–2017

Foodborne Campylobacter outbreaks by food category, 2010-2017 - unidentified food (83 outbreaks), multiple food categories (21), dairy (80), multiple food categories(21), mollusks (5), poultry (41), beef(4), fish(1), fruits (1)
How are Campylobacter outbreaks detected?

Outbreaks are identified when there is an increase in the number of cases reported in a specific location or time period. State, local, and territorial public health departments have the primary responsibility for identifying and investigating Campylobacter outbreaks.

How are Campylobacter outbreaks reported?

Outbreaks are reported to CDC by state health departments through the National Outbreak Reporting System (NORS).