Feb 282012

Foodborne Illness Outbreaks

I found this article online about chicks making kids sick.  It is very interesting and really emphasises the need for proper hygiene when handling chicks and chickens.  Raising backyard chickens is a lot of fun but you do need to be aware of the potential that they can make you sick.

  • Always wash your hands after handling chicks or chickens.
  • If you can’t, then have hand sanitizer near the chicken coop.
  • Be extra cautious when handling chicks or chickens that are new to your flock.

Read on to find out more about this serious health issue.


Backyard Chicks Make More Kids Sick

by Mary Rothschild | Jun 30, 2011
Infected chicks and ducklings have sickened 71 people — more than half of them younger than 5 — in a growing multistate outbreak of Salmonella that now involves two different strains of the bacteria.
In an update on the outbreak tied to backyard poultry, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported Wednesday that the number of Salmonella Altona infections is now up to 49 cases in 16 states, while another 22 people in 12 states have been infected with Salmonella Johannesburg.
Eighteen people have been hospitalized with severe diarrhea.
Most of those who are ill, or whose children are ill, reported buying the live poultry for either backyard flocks to produce eggs or as pets.
Traceback investigations have indicated that the chicks and ducklings were purchased from multiple locations of a national company, Feed Store Chain A, which says it obtained the poultry from the Ohio-based Mt. Healthy Hatchery.
More than half of the 71 people are younger than 5 years of age.
Here’s the breakdown on the number of illnesses by state:
As of June 27, a total of 49 individuals infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Altona:  Georgia (1), Indiana (1), Kentucky (5), Maryland (4), Michigan (1), Minnesota (1), New Hampshire (1), New York (2), North Carolina (8), Ohio (9), Pennsylvania (5), Tennessee (3), Virginia (4), Vermont (1), Wisconsin (1), and West Virginia (2).
As of June 27,  a total of 22 individuals infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Johannesburg: Alabama (1), Arkansas (1), Georgia (2), Kentucky (2), Maine (1), New York (3), North Carolina (3), Ohio (3), Pennsylvania (1), Tennessee (2), Vermont (2), and West Virginia (1).

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