Alfalfa Sprouts Could be the Cause
According to the U.S. Center for Infectious Disease Research & Policy (CIDRAP), a recent outbreak of Salmonella St. Paul in Nebraska and Iowa, relating to contaminated alfalfa sprouts, has spread to Kansas, Missouri and South Dakota.
Estimates suggest as many as 50 cases of salmonella poisoning in those states have been linked to the sprouts, however laboratory results have yet to confirm this.
On March 3, 2009, the FDA in conjunction with SunSprout Enterprises, issued a voluntary recall of 'Alfalfa Sprouts', 'Onion Sprouts', and 'Gourmet Sprouts' because of possible health risks. The sprouts were distributed to food distributors located in Iowa and Nebraska who further sell the product to restaurants and retail stores. Distribution was also made directly to one retail store in Nebraska.
The sprouts are sold refrigerated under the SunSprouts label in 4-oz. clear plastic clamshell containers that have the following “Best If Sold By” dates in the upper right-hand corner on each container, which may be expressed in 2 different styles: 30209 or MAR 02 2009, 30409 or MAR 04 2009, 30709 or MAR 07 2009, 30909 or MAR 09 2009, 31109 or MAR 11 2009, and 31409 or MAR 14 2009. The lot numbers, which are printed only on the shipping case, include: 3102, 3202, 3302, 4102, 4202, and 4302.
According to officials at the CIDRAP, the rare subtype of Salmonella St. Paul involved in this recent outbreak is the same subtype that was found in the 2008 outbreak linked to jalapeno and serrano peppers.
MARCH-10-09: SunSprout Enterprises, Inc. Voluntarily Recalls Alfalfa Sprouts [FDA: ALFALFA SPROUT SALMONELLA ]