CDC reports 338 multi-drug resistant Salmonella Heidelberg infections
Reports of infected persons have come from 20 U.S. States and Puerto Rico; the majority of cases, approximately 75 percent, were reported from California. Local, state and federal organizations are currently conducting investigations to trace the infection's source, which is believed to be Foster Farms brand chicken. Foster Farms supplies Costco's El Camino Real store in South San Francisco.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety Inspection Service on issued a Public Health Alert when three facilities in California tested positive for Salmonella Heidelberg on Oct. 7. On Oct. 12, Costco recalled more than 9,000 units of rotisserie chicken from its El Camino Real store for possible Salmonella Heidelberg contamination. On Oct. 17, the store recalled an additional 14,093 units of rotisserie chicken, believing its post-cooked ready-to-eat chicken was a probable cause of infection.
The investigation is still underway. The USDA-FSIS is at the head of the investigation and is prepared to take appropriate action as more information is known.
The CDC recommends consumers follow food safety tips to decrease risk of developing a Salmonella infection, as it is not unusual for raw poultry to have Salmonella bacteria.