More than 200 million eggs have been recalled in the United States due to fears they were contaminated with salmonella, according to a federal agency.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration said in an alert that the eggs originated from a farm owned by Rose Acre Farms of Seymour, Indiana.
The voluntary recall came after 22 illnesses were reported. The Rose Acre Farms facility in North Carolina has three million laying hens, all indoors, and produces 2.3 million eggs a day.
The eggs were distributed from the farm in Hyde County and reached consumers in the following states: Colorado, Florida, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia through retail stores and restaurants via direct delivery.
The affected eggs have a plant number, P-1065, with the Julian date range of 011 through 102 printed on the side or front of the carton. They were sold under a range of different names.
The Wall Street Journal reported that undercover videos of farms owned by Rose Acre were released by the Humane Society of the U.S. in 2010 showing chickens in crowded cages, with some injured or dead. But Marcus Rust, CEO of the company, said that the footage was misleading and said the company is working to go cageless, though still indoors, in all of its facilities by 2045.
According to Centers for Disease Control, salmonella affects around 1.2 million people in the United States every year. Food is the source for about one million of the illnesses.
Of the people affected, about 23,000 require hospitalization and about 450 people die from the illness.
Recalled eggs sold under multiple brand including Coburn Farms, Country Daybreak, Food Lion, Glenview, Great Value, Nelms, Sunshine Farms https://t.co/avbXxL1B05 Consumers with these eggs shouldn’t eat them. Throw them away or return them to place of purchase for credit or refund
— Scott Gottlieb, M.D. (@SGottliebFDA) April 14, 2018
Most people infected with salmonella develop diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps as soon as 12 hours after infection.
The illness typically lasts four to seven days, and most people are able to recover without any treatment.
Chickens can pass bacteria to eggs because the eggs leave hens through the same passageway as feces, although the bacteria can also enter the egg before the shell forms around it, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) said.
In general, salmonella “can also cause foodborne illness (salmonellosis) through cross-contamination, e.g., when juices from raw meat or poultry come in contact with ready-to-eat foods, such as salads.”
Anyone who bought the affected eggs is urged to return them to the place of purchase for a full refund.
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