More than 60 Utahns sick from onions linked to salmonella outbreak

Provided by The Canadian Press

According to CBS News, the FDA has announced that Thomson International Inc., located in Bakersfield, California, was likely the source of an outbreak of the illness in recent weeks.

US federal health officials say an outbreak of salmonella infecting almost 400 people in more than 30 states has been linked to red onions, and they identified a California company as the likely source.

However, more information is needed "to determine the cause of the contamination in red onions imported from the U.S", according to the agency.

Meanwhile, Sysco is recalling red onions imported from the US due to possible salmonella contamination.

The Public Health Agency of Canada is also investigating an outbreak of salmonella newport illnesses with a genetic fingerprint closely related to the US outbreak, the agency said Thursday.

The onions are likely linked to an outbreak of Salmonella Newport illness, affecting 114 people in B.C., Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario and P.E.I. If you're not sure where they came from, get rid of the food. Throw them away. If you made any foods with onions and you don't know where they are from, do not eat them. The alert added that 59 people have been hospitalized and no deaths have been reported.

All surfaces that might have come into contact with onions or their packaging, such as countertops, refrigerator drawers, knives and cutting boards, should be washed and sanitized. Symptoms usually start within 6 hours to 6 days after infection and last 4-7 days, according to the CDC.

Similar illnesses have been reported in the USA and American officials are working with Canada to identify the source of the outbreak.

Reported illnesses ranged from June 19-July 12, according to the CDC.

Salmonella bacteria are found naturally in the intestines of animals, reptiles and birds, according to PHAC, and are most often transmitted to people when they eat contaminated foods.

Although most people recover without treatment, some have severe infections.

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