A salmonella outbreak linked to tainted cucumbers has been attributed to 732 illnesses and four deaths as of October 5th, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced. The toll has risen from last month, when the agency reported 445 illness and three deaths across 35 states. The recalled cucumbers were imported from Mexico. Based on current CDC statistics, the salmonella outbreak affected the greatest number of people in California, where 192 were sickened, and Arizona, where 112 became ill.
Companies have issued voluntary recalls due to the potential risk. On September 11th, Custom Produce Sales recalled cucumbers sold under the “Fat Boy” label; they were grown in Baja California and distributed in California, Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Nevada, North Dakota, Oklahoma and Texas. On September 4th, Andrew & Williamson Fresh Produce voluntarily recalled cucumbers grown and packed by Rancho Don Juanito in Mexico. The cucumbers were sold under the label “Limited Edition” and were distributed between Aug. 1 and Sept. 3.
CDC statistics suggest that about 1.2 million people become ill and 450 die each year in the United States as a result of salmonella poisoning. Exposure to Salmonella Poona bacteria can be life-threatening without antibiotics, especially in children, the elderly and people with weakened immune systems. Half of the people who got sick in the recent cucumber-linked outbreak were younger than 18, the CDC said. Symptoms include diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps.