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Salmonella in chicken salad kills 1, sickens 265 in 8 states

by DAVID PITT, Associated Press

Chicken salad made by an Iowa food processing company and distributed by Fareway stores in the Midwest sicked 265 people in eight States and caused a death in Iowa of Salmonella contamination, said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The outbreak that made people sick from January 8 through March 20 seems to be over, the CDC said in an update published on Friday. The sick people were between the ages of less than 1 year and 89 years. Sixty-seven percent were women.

Contaminated food left some people with serious illnesses, said Seattle food safety attorney Bill Marler. He and Iowa attorney Steve Wandro represent 48 people filing lawsuits against Triple T Specialty Meats of Ackley, Iowa, which manufactured chicken salad and Fareway Stores, a Boone, Iowa-based supermarket chain that distributed food under the brand of your store. [19659005] Of the 265 diseases, 94 people were hospitalized, a large number of such outbreak said Marler.

"There's a woman in Nebraska who was in the ICU for a week and a gentleman in Iowa who has lost her large intestine, now she faces another surgery in a month or two to try to reconnect that. obviously there are some people who are quite sick, "said Marler.

Wandro said that several of the patients are in their 70s or 80s with weakened immune systems that have had to go to specialized care centers for several weeks to recover.

Dave Dutton, spokesman for Triple T Specialty Meats, said the company does not comment.

"We still receive information and we want to make sure we have all that information before making any public comment," said Dutton, a lawyer from Waterloo, Iowa.

When asked if the company had determined the source of the contamination of Salmonella, said: "that is the work of the test companies and we have not seen all the reports yet".

Salmonella infection usually occurs when a person eats food contaminated with animal feces or human carriers of the bacteria.

"On behalf of everyone at Fareway, our sympathy goes to the affected families, and we are working diligently to resolve this issue," Fareway CEO Reynolds Cramer said in a statement.

The company is working with state and federal agencies on the investigation and has not taken the chicken salad Triple T Specialty Meats pulled off the shelves and will not take this product forward, he said.

The lawsuits already filed in federal court in Des Moines allege violations of product liability for distributing defective food and negligence for failure to ensure that the food distributed was safe to eat. They seek money to compensate victims for "general, special, incidental and consequential damages incurred" and attorneys' fees.

Diseases hit Iowa the hardest with 240 patients and one death, the CDC said. Illinois reported 10 cases, Nebraska had five, Minnesota had four, and South Dakota had three diseases. Indiana, Mississippi and Wisconsin reported a case related to chicken salad.

Iowa Department of Public Health spokeswoman Polly Carver-Kimm said a woman in eastern Iowa died of the same salmonella strain identified in the chicken salad shoot but stopped. The CDC spokeswoman , Brittany Behm, confirmed on Monday that the Iowa woman died of the outbreak strain, which meets the agency's criteria for inclusion in the outbreak.

CDC spokeswoman Brittany Behm confirmed Monday that the Iowa woman died. statistics

On February 9, Fareway stopped selling chicken salad in all its stores after the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals contacted the company about diseases. Iowa public health officials issued a consumer notice on February 13 warning that the chicken salad sold in Fareway may be contaminated with Salmonella. Eight days later, Triple T Specialty Meats withdrew more than 20,000 pounds of chicken salad after samples from two Fareway stores in Iowa tested positive for the same strain of Salmonella that made people sick.

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