Florida among states in na­tional egg re­call

Sun Sentinel Broward Edition - - FRONT PAGE - By Kris­tine Phillips The Wash­ing­ton Post

More than 200 mil­lion eggs dis­trib­uted to restau­rants and stores in nine states have been re­called be­cause of con­tam­i­na­tion.

Fed­eral of­fi­cials say nearly 207 mil­lion eggs have been re­called be­cause of fears that they may have been con­tam­i­nated with sal­mo­nella, a type of bac­te­ria that causes se­ri­ous ill­nesses and deaths, par­tic­u­larly among chil­dren and elderly peo­ple.

Rose Acre Farms is re­call­ing the prod­ucts af­ter fed­eral of­fi­cials tied ill­nesses to the com­pany’s fa­cil­ity in North Carolina, the U.S. Food and Drug Ad­min­is­tra­tion said. Twenty-two peo­ple on the East Coast have been sick­ened by sal­mo­nella braen­derup. No one has died.

An in­ves­ti­ga­tion by the fed­eral agency led to an in­spec­tion of the farm, which is lo­cated in Hyde County, N.C., and pro­duces 2.3 mil­lion eggs a day from 3 mil­lion hens. Eggs pro­duced at the farm are dis­trib­uted to re­tail stores and restau­rants in Colorado, Florida, New Jersey, Penn­syl­va­nia, Vir­ginia, West Vir­ginia and the Caroli­nas.

The re­called eggs were sold un­der brand names such as Great Value, Coun­try Day­break, Glen­view and Food Lion. They were also sold to Waf­fle House restau­rants.

Rose Acre Farms is a fam­ily-owned com­pany head­quar­tered in Sey­mour, Ind., and has 17 fa­cil­i­ties in eight states. The Wash­ing­ton Post was un­able to reach the com­pany Sun­day.

The re­call is the largest since 2010, when a ma­jor sal­mo­nella out­break tied to Iowa egg farms sick­ened more than 1,500 peo­ple, ac­cord­ing to Food Safety News, a web­site cre­ated by Bill Mar­ler, a per­sonal in­jury at­tor­ney who fo­cuses on food-borne ill­ness lit­i­ga­tion.

More than 500 eggs from two Iowa farms owned and con­trolled by Austin DeCoster were re­called that year. DeCoster and his son, Pe­ter DeCoster, each pleaded guilty to one count of in­tro­duc­ing adul­ter­ated food into in­ter­state com­merce. Au­thor­i­ties said the DeCosters’ com­pany, Qual­ity Egg, sold eggs con­tam­i­nated with sal­mo­nella en­teridi­tis to sev­eral states and bribed an in­spec­tor for the U.S. De­part­ment of Agri­cul­ture in an at­tempt to sell eggs that were “red­tagged” for fail­ing to meet min­i­mum in­dus­try stan­dards.

The father and son were sen­tenced to three months in jail.

Ac­cord­ing to the Cen­ters for Dis­ease Con­trol and Preven­tion, sal­mo­nella causes about 1.2 mil­lion ill­nesses, 23,000 hos­pi­tal­iza­tions and 450 deaths ev­ery year in the United States.

Sal­mo­nella can come from con­tam­i­nated an­i­mal prod­ucts such as beef, poul­try, milk and eggs, as well as fruits and veg­eta­bles. It can cause fever, di­ar­rhea, nau­sea, vom­it­ing and ab­dom­i­nal pain among healthy peo­ple, but can lead to fa­tal in­fec­tions among chil­dren younger than 5, adults older than 65 and those with weak im­mune sys­tems.

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