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Tyson Mechanically Separated Chicken Salmonella Outbreak

On January 14, 2014, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced that 9 people incarcerated at a correctional facility in Tennessee had tested positive for Salmonella Heidelberg. Two were hospitalized due to the severity of their Salmonella infections; no deaths were reported.

According to the CDC, epidemiologic and traceback investigations led to the determination that Tyson brand mechanically separated chicken was the source of the Salmonella Heidelberg infections at the Tennessee correctional facility. On January 10, 2014, Tyson Foods recalled approximately 33,000 pounds of mechanically separated chicken products for potential Salmonella Heidelberg contamination. The products had been distributed to institutions and were not available for sale in retail stores.

The CDC stated in its announcement that 19 other people from 12 states have been infected with the same strain of Salmonella Heidelberg as the strain involved in the Tennessee outbreak; however, that strain of Salmonella Heidelberg is commonly reported and investigations are ongoing to determine whether those additional Salmonella cases are linked to the cases at the Tennessee correctional facility.

The Tyson mechanically separated chicken Salmonella Heidelberg outbreak is distinct from an earlier Salmonella Heidelberg outbreak traced to Foster Farms brand chicken.

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