Health experts say consumers need to be on the lookout for certain eggs and lettuce which could be deadly.
The Food and Drug Administration has issued a salmonella warning associated with eggs, and now they're providing details about those specific eggs to help Americans avoid this dangerous illness.
The contaminated eggs are in cartons with the number P-1065 stamped on it. The recall includes more than 200 million eggs.
The FDA warns consumers not to eat the eggs. Customers may return them to the store where they were purchased for a refund.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stated Monday that at least 23 people have been sickened with salmonella and six have been hospitalized.
Salmonella can be fatal, particularly to children under age five, the elderly and those with compromised immune systems. The C.D.C. says about 450 people die from salmonella every year in the United States, while over one million people are sickened with it.
Symptoms include diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps. Normally healthy people can usually recover from salmonella infection in a few days without treatment.
The eggs came from a farm in Hyde County, North Carolina, which has three million hens, producing 2.3 million eggs a day. The farm is owned by Rose Acre Farms, reportedly the second largest egg producer in the US.
The eggs being recalled were distributed to nine states: North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, South Carolina, Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Florida and Colorado.
Some of the brand names associated with the tainted eggs include Food Lion, Great Value, Coburn Farms, Country Daybreak, Glenview, Nelms and Sunshine Farms.
Meanwhile, the CDC is warning consumers not to eat chopped romaine lettuce originating from the Yuma, Arizona region, although no particular grower, supplier or distributor has been identified.
Some of the romaine lettuce from that area is contaminated with the E. coli bacteria, which can be deadly. So far, 22 people have been hospitalized after eating the contaminated lettuce.
One of them is suing Panera Bread company and its romaine lettuce supplier Freshway Foods. Louise Fraser allegedly contracted E. coli from a salad she ate at a Raritan, New Jersey restaurant. The woman suffered kidney failure as a result, according to her lawsuit.
E. coli symptoms include diarrhea, severe stomach cramps, and vomiting.
Caleb Lane told CBN News he was sickened with E. coli after eating at a Mexican restaurant in Chesapeake, Virginia. "It was the normal order I always get there. I had romaine lettuce. I'm not a big iceberg lettuce fan," the 22-year-old Young Life leader said.
He said hours after eating he began vomiting profusely immediately following an event. "I'm glad it happened after the event ended. I would have felt awful if I was around high school students doing that," he said, adding, "It was nothing like I've ever experienced before."
After his symptoms passed the next day, Caleb called the restaurant. "They said they had gotten several calls from people who'd experienced the same thing," he said, "Lettuce was a common theme they attested to."
The CDC advises all restaurants to throw away all chopped romaine lettuce that might have originated from the Yuma area. Consumers are likewise being warned to dispose of store-bought chopped romaine lettuce at home, including salads and salad mixes containing chopped romaine lettuce.
The CDC recommends the following food safety precautions to avoid many types of food-borne illnesses including infections from E. coli bacteria.
Food Safety Precautions
1. Wash your hands after using the restroom or changing diapers, before and after preparing or eating food, and after contact with animals.
2. Cook meats thoroughly to kill harmful germs. Steaks and roasts should be cooked to at least 145˚F and let rest for three minutes after you remove meat from the grill or stove. Cook ground beef and pork to at least 160˚F. Use a food thermometer to check the temperature of the meat.
3. Don't cross-contaminate food preparation areas. Thoroughly wash hands, counters, cutting boards, and utensils after they touch raw meat.
4. Wash fruits and vegetables before eating, unless the package says the contents have been washed.
5. Avoid raw milk, other unpasteurized dairy products, and unpasteurized juices.