abc
QUICK LINKS:

Salmonella Decline Seen in Food Poisoning Report

Updated: 04/17/2014 3:07 PM
Created: 04/17/2014 3:06 PM WDIO.com
By: MIKE STOBBE, AP Medical Writer

NEW YORK (AP) - The government's latest report card on food poisoning shows a dip in salmonella cases but an increase in illnesses from bacteria in raw shellfish. The report counts cases in only 10 states for some of the most common causes of foodborne illness, but is believed to be a good indicator of national food poisoning trends. Highlights from Thursday's report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

WHAT'S MAKING US SICK?

Salmonella remains at the top of the chart, far ahead of most other foodborne germs. Only campylobacter - a bacteria commonly linked to raw milk and poultry - comes close. Other causes, listeria, shigella and E. coli, trail behind.

IS FOOD POISONING GETTING WORSE?

Overall, no. Last year, there were no significant changes in most kinds of food poisoning, compared to the previous three years. The new report tallied about 20,000 illnesses and 80 deaths in the 10 states, similar to previous years. The CDC estimates that 1 in 6 Americans get sick from contaminated food each year, though most cases are not reported.

ANY GOOD NEWS?

Yes, for salmonella. The rate of new cases dropped 9 percent - the biggest drop in about a decade. But officials are cautious about making too much of it, since it was compared to a time period that included a big outbreak linked to eggs in 2010. Last year's rate is similar to what it was about five years ago. CDC officials hope new regulatory proposals, like one to prevent salmonella in chicken parts, will keep pushing rates down.

WHAT ABOUT BAD NEWS?

There was in increase in infections from vibrio bacteria found in raw shellfish, like oysters.  Last year, cases were up 32 percent from the previous three years and 75 percent from about five years ago. But the numbers remain very small - only 242 of the 20,000 illnesses recorded in the 10 states. Climate change is warming coastal waters in some places, and that may be helping spread some vibrio strains to new locations, said Dr. Robert Tauxe, a CDC food-germ expert. "The warmer the water, the more vibrio," he said.  A strain traditionally found in the Pacific Northwest, is now showing up along the East Coast. Tauxe said it might have been spread through water in ships' ballast tanks.

HOW CAN YOU PREVENT FOOD POISONING?

Carefully wash and clean food, and cook meat, poultry and eggs thoroughly. Avoid raw milk and unpasteurized juices. Promptly refrigerate leftovers. A government report last year showed leafy greens like lettuce and spinach were the leading source of food poisoning, and produce in general accounted for nearly half of all illnesses. There were slightly more deaths attributed to poultry than to vegetables in the decade studied.

___

Online: Food safety

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Front Page

  • Missing Employee Found at Soudan Underground Mine State Park

    Authorities have located 76-year-old Adrienne De Vries at the Soudan Underground Mine State Park. De Vries is an employee of the park, and lost her way when walking down a trail. The St. Louis County Sheriff's Department says she was transported to Ely Hospital to get checked as a precautionary.

  • Sky High: Northlanders Blast Off on New Flyboard

    Here in the Northland, we're used to lakes, but a new toy is changing how we enjoy the water. The flyboard is making its Twin Ports debut. It's a water jet pack on a board that is hooked up to a jet ski. The water launches you up to 55 feet in the air.

  • One Killed in Douglas County Two-Vehicle Crash

    A two-vehicle collision in Douglas County turned fatal Wednesday afternoon. Law enforcement on the scene confirmed with Eyewitness News that at least one person was killed.

  • Democrats Vying for Wisconsin's 25th Senate District Talk Mining

    Mining is a top issue in northern Wisconsin's legislative races, and a formal debate Wednesday night was no exception. Three democrats vying for the 25th Senate District seat explained their views during a public debate at the Great Lakes Visitor Center in Ashland.

  • Scannell Testifies in His Own Criminal Sexual Misconduct Trial

    Cook County Attorney Tim Scannell took the witness stand today for what was an emotional testimony from the man charged with two accounts of 4th degree criminal sexual misconduct for a relationship he allegedly had with a 17-year old girl in August 2012. 

 
Advertisement