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84 Boy Scouts With Symptoms of E. coli 0157:H7

Lisa Crutchfield of the Times-Dispatch reported this morning that about 84 people who attended the camp at the reservation between July 20 and Aug. 2 have shown symptoms of the E. coli O157:H7 infection. Twenty-five children in Northern Virginia have been lab-confirmed with the E. coli O157H7 infection and eight Virginia Scouts have required hospitalization, said Virginia health officials. In addition, five cases of E. coli O157:H7 have been confirmed among those who returned from Goshen to Maryland.

S&S Foods of Azusa, California recalled about 153,630 pounds of frozen ground beef linked to E. coli O157:H7 infections at Goshen Scout Reservation in Rockbridge County. Health officials matched samples of beef removed from the Scout reservation to bacteria found in stool samples of some of the affected campers.

According to the CTI website, "CTI Foods is a privately held company owned by a group of foodservice industry veterans. The Company was established in July 2003 through the acquisition and merger of SSI Food Services, Inc. and S&S Foods, LLC. Since then, the Company has expanded its operations into Texas by opening two additional processing facilities. Production operations have been in place since 1986 in Idaho, 1998 in California, and 2004 in Texas."

As I said to the LA Times yesterday:

Since spring 2007, more than 19,500 tons of E. coli-tainted beef have been recalled in more than 30 separate incidents, according to Seattle attorney and food safety expert William D. Marler.

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health announced Monday that it was investigating six cases of E. coli that might be linked to a multi-state outbreak involving tainted meat from Nebraska Beef of Omaha. So far, at least 50 people have been sickened.

"Nobody I’ve talked to has any idea why we’re seeing an increase, though everybody has a different theory," Marler said. "The meat industry basically has no answers. It’s pretty frustrating — there’ll be some hand-wringing, a bunch of lawsuits and nothing will be done until three months later, when it all happens again."

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