Seattle law firm files sixth lawsuit against ConAgra over Salmonella-tainted pot pies


SEATTLE, WA – Marler Clark filed a sixth lawsuit against ConAgra today on behalf of a victim of the Banquet pot pie Salmonella outbreak that sickened hundreds. The lawsuit was filed in Yakima County Superior Court on behalf of Yakima resident Renee Barnes, who became ill with a Salmonella infection in May, 2007 after consuming a Banquet pot pie manufactured by ConAgra.

According to the lawsuit, Ms. Barnes became ill with symptoms of Salmonella poisoning within days of eating a Banquet pot pie in mid-May. She sought medical treatment for her illness on May 16 and May 23, and later learned that a specimen she had provided tested positive for Salmonella. Months afterward, Ms. Barnes learned she was one of 272 people who tested positive for the outbreak strain of Salmonella – Salmonella serotype I4,5,12:i:- and that the Banquet pot pie she had eaten was the source of her illness.

“I represent thousands of people who became ill with Salmonella after eating either pot pies or peanut butter – both products manufactured by ConAgra – this year,” said William Marler, managing partner of Marler Clark. “At this point, not one of them has been compensated for their injuries. It’s about time.”

ConAgra resumed production of its Banquet and store-brand pot pies on November 1, after introducing more stringent testing procedures for ingredients being included in ready-to-cook products and modifying cooking instructions. The firm plans to ship the pot pies to retail outlets in December and anticipates the products being on store shelves by January.

“If ConAgra is ready to make a profit off these products again, the least they should do is right some wrongs first,” Marler continued. Marler Clark will send a representative and an environmental health expert to attend an inspection of the pot pie plant in Marshall, Missouri, on December 5th.

BACKGROUND: Marler’s Seattle-based law firm, Marler Clark has represented thousands of victims of E. coli, Salmonella, Hepatitis A, Listeria, Shigella, Campylobacter and Norovirus illnesses. In 1998, Marler and his current law partners formed OutBreak, a non-profit food safety organization. Marler dedicates a significant amount of his time to travel to food-industry and public health conferences, giving speeches about how to prevent food poisoning and the consequences of foodborne illness outbreaks. Marler comments on foodborne illness outbreaks and litigation at www.marlerblog.com.

More about the ConAgra pot pie Salmonella outbreak can be found in the Case News area of this site.