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States include California, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Texas. The Salmonella outbreak, which has sickened more than 600 people in 37 states, has been linked to several imported onions, federal health officials said Wednesday.

& #8220 Discard all unmarked onions at home. Do not eat, sell or serve red, white or yellow onions imported from Mexico and distributed in the United States by ProSource Inc, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warned in a tweet.

Epidemic UPDATE: Fresh whole onions are causing a large salmonellosis outbreak in 37 states. Throw the unmarked onions home. Do not eat, sell, or serve red, white, or yellow onions imported from Mexico and distributed in the United States by ProSource Inc.

– CDC (@CDCgov)

States include Alabama, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York. , North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.

According to the CDC, 652 people were infected with salmonella and there were 129 hospitalizations. No deaths were reported.

“Epidemiological and monitoring data indicate that the source of infection in this outbreak is whole red, white and yellow onions imported from Chihuahua, Mexico and distributed in the United States by ProSource Inc,” the CDC said in a statement.

According to epidemiological investigations conducted by the CDC, several people who contracted salmonellosis ate onions in the same restaurant.

The CDC said the number of people with this Salmonella outbreak is likely to be higher than reported and the outbreak may not be limited to the listed states.

“This is because many people recover without medical treatment and are not tested for salmonella,” the agency said.

In addition to discarding the onions, contact surfaces should be washed and if you experience severe symptoms of salmonellosis, see a doctor. Symptoms include bloody diarrhea and a high fever, severe vomiting and signs of dehydration that usually begin six hours to six days after infection, according to the CDC.

Federal health officials are investigating whether other onions and suppliers are linked to the outbreak.

According to the CDC, there are approximately 1.35 million salmonella infections in the United States each year, with approximately 420 deaths. The infection usually occurs by eating food contaminated with animal feces.

Last year, onions were also the source of a salmonella outbreak that infected 640 people in more than 40 states.

Also last year, at least 55 people in 12 different states got sick after a Salmonella outbreak was linked to dried ear fungus, according to the CDC. And peaches and peach products were recalled in 2020 after 101 people in 17 states came down with salmonella poisoning linked to the fruit.

What is salmonella?

Salmonella is a bacteria that can cause an infection called salmonellosis. According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, most human infections are caused by eating food contaminated with bacteria.

The bacterium is named after D. Salmon, an American scientist who discovered it in the 19th century.

What are the symptoms?

An intestinal salmonella infection can cause diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps. These symptoms usually appear within three days of infection and usually go away within 47 days.

In some cases, the infection can spread to the bloodstream and to other parts of the body. These cases are associated with more severe diarrhea that can lead to hospitalization. Severe cases can be fatal if not treated promptly with antibiotics.

How common is salmonellosis and how often do people die?

About 1 million food-related illnesses are caused by Salmonella each year in the United States. Of these, some 19,000 people are hospitalized, 380 are dying.

How to prevent salmonellosis?

In general, eating raw animal products can increase your chances of getting salmonella. Here are some tips shared by the CDC.

Does cooking kill salmonella?

Careful cooking of foods such as meat and poultry destroys bacteria. Instead, customers are being asked to “return them to the store for a full refund or throw them away.”

To prevent the spread of bacteria, keep surfaces clean, wash your hands often, separate fruits and vegetables from poultry, and cook foods hot enough to kill germs. The CDC recommends a temperature of 160 degrees Fahrenheit for pork.