Food Safety Focus (96th Issue, July 2014) – Food Incident Highlight
Outbreak of Salmonella Associated with
Organic Sprouted Chia Powder in the US
Last month, the Centre for Food Safety (CFS) detected through its routine Food Incident Surveillance System that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the United States (US) reported a multistate outbreak of Salmonella infections associated with organic sprouted chia powder manufactured in the US. Investigation by the CFS revealed that one of the products concerned was available for sale in the local market. The CFS has immediately alerted the trade to stop sale and issued a food alert warning the public not to consume the affected product.
Salmonella infection may cause fever, vomiting, abdominal pain and diarrhoea. In severe cases, the infection can become systemic. The effects on people with lowered immunity could be more severe and sometimes may even lead to death. Consumers who possess the affected product should stop consuming it immediately and seek medical treatment if feeling unwell after eating the product. The CFS will continue to closely monitor the situation and liaise with the US authorities to follow up on the outbreak.
The affected chia seed powder (Photo by courtesy of the US Food and Drug Administration)