E. coli Outbreak with Unknown Food Source
Posted March 11, 2021
This outbreak is over. Always follow the four steps to food safety: clean, separate, cook, chill.
What You Should Do
Always follow these four food safety steps to prevent getting sick from E. coli:
- Clean: Wash your hands, utensils, and surfaces often. Wash fruits and vegetables before eating, cutting, or peeling.
- Separate: Keep food that won’t be cooked separate from raw meat, poultry, and seafood.
- Cook: Use a food thermometer to make sure you have cooked your food to a temperature high enough to kill germsexternal icon.
- Chill: Refrigerate foods that go bad within 2 hours (within 1 hour if it is hotter than 90°F). Thaw food in the refrigerator, not on the counter.
Symptoms of E. coli
- Most people infected with Shiga toxin-producing E. coli experience severe stomach cramps, diarrhea (often bloody), and vomiting.
- Symptoms usually start 3 to 4 days after swallowing the bacteria.
- Most people recover without treatment after 5 to 7 days.
- Some people may develop a type of kidney failure (hemolytic uremic syndrome, also called HUS) and would need to be hospitalized.
- For more information about E. coli, see the E. coli Questions and Answers page.
Page last reviewed: March 11, 2021