A jalapeno pepper contaminated with the same strain of salmonella responsible for the outbreak has been found in a small distribution center in McAllen, Texas, government investigators said Monday. Peppers from Agricola Zaragoza sent to Georgia and Texas restaurants and retailers have been recalled, according to the company. The pepper discovery led officials to widen their warning against eating raw jalapeno and serrano peppers from all sources. Contaminated irrigation water is suspected contained the salmonella strain.
The long-running outbreak has sickened 1,251 people and caused at least 229 hospitalizations, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It has been linked to two deaths since the outbreak began April 10.
Tomatoes suspected earlier in June to contain salmonella strain:Consumers, restaurants and supermarkets, told earlier this summer to shun certain kinds of tomatoes suspected of causing the outbreak,are now being advised not to eat, serve or sell raw jalapenos or serranos.Those peppers are a staple in Mexican cuisine.
Tomatoes taken off contamination list:Tomatoes, on the other hand, are back on the cleared list, with federal officials saying last week that all tomatoes on the market are from safe growing regions.
Salmonella is found in animal feces and can spread to food through contaminated soil, irrigation water, dirty hands or processing equipment. Signs of illness include diarrhea, vomiting and stomach cramps, and can last for several days.
Want to know about Salmonella, causes, sickness and other information?Check this out!