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CDC Discovers Source of Interstate Salmonella Outbreak

October 21, 2021

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has determined whole onions are responsible for a salmonella outbreak that has sickened 652 people in 37 states.

Epidemiologic and traceback data found that whole red, white, and yellow onions imported from Chihuahua, Mexico, and distributed throughout the United States by ProSource Inc. are one source of the infection. The outbreak was responsible for 129 hospitalizations, but fortunately no deaths.

Interviews with people sickened by the outbreak revealed that 75% of them ate or possibly ate raw onions or dishes likely containing raw onions before they became sick. Several ill people reported eating at the same restaurants, The outbreak strain was identified in a sample of cilantro and lime from a restaurant condiment cup collected from a sick person’s home. The sick person also reported that the cup contained onions, though none were left in the cup when it was tested.

The CDC advises that people throw away any whole onions that are unlabeled or marked as coming from ProSource. Wash surfaces and containers that may have touched the onions using hot soapy water.

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