ATLANTA, GEORGIA, US — The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on March 30 issued an investigation notice regarding cases of Salmonella that are suspected to have originated from a single unidentified flour source.
Flour was the only common ingredient consumed by every patient sickened in the outbreak, according to the CDC. As of the date of publication, 11 people in 12 states had been reported as being infected with the Salmonella strain. No deaths have been reported.
The CDC and the US Food and Drug Administration are collecting data regarding the outbreak to determine its source. In the meantime, consumers nationwide are urged to follow the standing recommendation that any raw flour products — including cookie dough and cake batter — be fully cooked before consuming.
Public health investigators have used the database PulseNet to verify that the active Salmonella infections have very similar “DNA fingerprints,” which are determined via Whole Gene Sequencing (WGS). The close genetic relationship among results suggests that those infected likely became sick from eating the same food product.
As of the date of publication, one case has been confirmed in each of the following states: Oregon, California, Nebraska, Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, Tennessee, Ohio, Virginia and New York. Two cases have been confirmed in Illinois. The first confirmed case was reported December 6, 2022. The CDC stated that “the true number of sick people is likely much higher than the number reported,” because not every related case results in hospitalization and testing.