Salmonella becoming more common is US
USDA tests show a type of salmonella found in eggs is
turning up more often in chicken meat. From 2000 through 2005, there was a
fourfold increase in positive test results for salmonella enteritidis on chicken
Even though the overall incidence of salmonella in general has fallen, it
still continues to rise, according to Richard Raymond, the Agriculture
Department undersecretary for food safety.
Many different salmonella
bacteria make people sick, but salmonella enteritidis
is one of the most common. It causes
fever, stomach cramps and diarrhea. In vulnerable people, infection become
deadly by spreading beyond the intestine to the bloodstream.
At one time, eggs became contaminated with salmonella on
the outside from contact with fecal bacteria, but in recent years, the
salmonella enteritidis strain has been found inside intact, disinfected, grade A
eggs. This type of germ contaminates eggs inside a hen's ovaries, before shells
are even formed.
Now the germ is
turning up in broiler chickens according to research by the Agriculture
Department. A recent Centers for Disease
(CDC) study on food
poisoning from salmonella noted that the risk of illness from salmonella
enteritidis increased the less people ate at home.
"This measure may, in fact, be considered to be a proxy for eating a larger
number of commercially prepared meals," the CDC found. That study said that
while overall infections from salmonella were lower than in the mid-1990s,
infections from salmonella enteritidis were 25 % higher.
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