Date Sent: 01/22/2016 04:58 PM EST
Sender: Michigan Health Alert Network
Subject: Multistate Outbreak of Listeriosis Linked to Packaged Salads
The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services has been collaborating with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, and local health departments in Michigan on a multistate foodborne outbreak of listeriosis.
Twelve people in six states have been infected with the outbreak strain of Listeria monocytogenes since July 5, 2015, including: Indiana (1), Massachusetts (1), Michigan (4), New Jersey (1), New York (4), and Pennsylvania (1).
The source of the illnesses was not known until January 2016 when the laboratory result from packaged salad collected at a Dole processing facility in Springfield, Ohio, was linked to the illnesses. Laboratory tests showed that the Listeria isolate from the packaged salad was highly related genetically to isolates from ill people. The CDC is recommending that consumers do not eat, restaurants do not serve, and retailers do not sell packaged salads produced at the Dole processing facility in Springfield, OH. The company is withdrawing all packaged salads currently on the market that were produced at this facility. These packaged salads, which were distributed in Michigan, were sold under various brand names including Dole, Fresh Selections, Simple Truth, Marketside, The Little Salad Bar, and President's Choice. These packaged salads can be identified by the letter "A" at the beginning of the manufacturing code found on the package. At this time, there is no evidence to suggest that packaged salads produced at other Dole processing facilities in the United States are linked to illness. Ill people range in age from 3 to 83 years, and the median age is 66. Sixty-nine percent of ill people are female. All 12 (100%) ill people reported being hospitalized, and one person from Michigan died as a result of listeriosis. One of the illnesses reported was in a pregnant woman.
Listeria can cause a serious, life-threatening illness. Symptoms of listeriosis include high fever, severe headache, neck stiffness, muscle aches, and nausea, sometimes diarrhea or other gastrointestinal symptoms. The disease primarily affects pregnant women, newborn babies, older adults, and adults with weakened immune systems. Pregnant women may experience a milder illness with fever and non-specific symptoms, such as fatigue, headache, and aches; however, infections in pregnant women can lead to miscarriage, stillbirth, premature delivery, or a life-threatening infection in the newborn. The incubation period can range from 2-3 days after exposure to as long as 70 days. People experiencing these symptoms and who may have consumed this packaged salad product should seek immediate medical attention.