Woman, 23, dies in St. Louis after contracting E. coli

A 23-year-old is dead after she got E. coli, possibly after eating at a local restaurant. Her family is now asking for an investigation into the restaurant.

KMOV reports Ciera Brookfield told her family that she felt sick after eating at a Chinese restaurant in Overland, near St. Louis, Missouri.

Ciera was just 23 when she passed away on Thursday. Her family says the Ladue Horton Watkins High School grad got sick after eating at Hon’s Wok, which is next door to where she worked at Woofie’s on Woodson Road.

“She came home about 8 that night. She came in, she laid down on the couch, she said ‘mom, I think I have food poisoning,'” said Donna Clark, Ciera’s mother. “I went to work, came back and she was very frantic, saying that she thought it was really bad.”

That was last Thursday. By Friday night Ciera was in the ICU. Mercy Hospital confirms that she had E. coli. But Ciera also suffered from Sickle Cell disease, which made the infection worse.

“It went to her blood stream and for a person with sickle cell, it’s harder to fight it,” Clark said.

As Ciera’s family grieves, they want the St. Louis County Health Department to investigate the Chinese restaurant.

“We don’t want anybody else to die like my daughter died,” Clark said.

But it’s important to note that the CDC says E. coli symptoms usually appear three to four days after someone contracts the bacteria but that it can be as short as one day.

The St. Louis County Health Department cannot confirm that Ciera contracted E. coli at Hon’s Wok. The department is investigating a complaint there but says, at this point, it does not include E. coli.

“We’ve been open over 10 years and [nothing] like this [has happened] before,” said Thao Vuong, Hon’s Wok manager.


Calif. lettuce positive for E. coli O157:H7 in Canada

Canadians are being warned by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency not to eat Tanimura & Antle brand Romaine Lettuce from Salinas, Calif. because it may be contaminated with E. coli O157:H7.

The affected product, Tanimura & Antle brand Romaine Lettuce, produce of USA, is sold in a plastic package containing 1 head of lettuce. The package bears the UPC0 27918�ى The affected product was sold at retail from August 8, 2012 through August 17, 2012.

This product has been distributed in Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta, British Columbia, Nunavut and Yukon.

There have been no reported illnesses associated with the consumption of this product.


6 dead, 99 suspected sick from E. coli O157 in pickled cabbage in Japan

Four people, including a 4-year-old girl, have been confirmed dead of food poisoning from pickled Chinese cabbage produced by a Sapporo food company.

The Yomiuri Shimbun reports another two are suspected to have died due to the cabbage.

According to the city health care center, four people have died of poisoning caused by E. coli O157 after eating pickled Chinese cabbage produced in late July by Iwai Shokuhin. Three of the four victims were women in their 80s and 100s living in elderly care facilities in the city.

Mass food poisoning occurred at elderly care facilities in and around the city, with 99 patients likely connected to the suspect cabbage.

Four-year-old girl Ayana Matsumura of Sapporo suffered symptoms from Aug. 6 and died last Saturday.

The O157 strain discovered in her body was found to be the same strain detected in the cabbage. According to information relayed to the city by her family, she is very likely to have eaten cabbage bought at a supermarket near her house.

The food firm’s president, Norio Iwai, expressed deep regret. “I feel deeply about (the incident) and will do my best to help investigations. I can only say I’m truly sorry,” he said.

Mourners gather in bright pink for funeral of eight-year-old UK girl who died from E.c oli after holiday in US

Hundreds of mourners dressed in bright pink gathered today in Ayrshire for the funeral of tragic E.coli victim Rachel Shaw.

The Daily Mail reports Rachel’s family – including mother Louise Baillie, 38, and father Adam Shaw, 35 – asked mourners attending Dalrymple Parish Church, East Ayrshire, to dress in the eight-year-old’s favourite color rather than wearing black.

A packed Ayrshire church saw family, neighbours, school pals and teachers come to bid a final farewell to the schoolgirl, whose little white coffin was decorated with pink flowers and a framed photograph.

Rachel died in hospital on Saturday night after contracting E. coli at the end of July. An investigation is underway as to the exact source of the bug, but it is believed she may have contracted it in the U.S. as she had recently returned from visiting her father, who lives there.

FDA: 141 sick, 2 dead in 20 states from Salmonella in cantaloupe

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration along with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state and local officials are investigating a multi-state outbreak of Salmonella Typhimurium infections.

A total of 141 persons infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Typhimurium have been reported from 20 states.

The number of ill persons identified in each state is as follows: Alabama (7), Arkansas (3), California (2), Georgia (1), Illinois (17), Indiana (13), Iowa (7), Kentucky (50), Michigan (6), Minnesota (3), Missouri (9), Mississippi (2), New Jersey (1), North Carolina (3), Ohio (3), Pennsylvania (2), South Carolina (3), Tennessee (6), Texas (1), and Wisconsin (2).

Thirty-one persons have been hospitalized, and two deaths have been reported in Kentucky.

In the course of their investigation, state officials in Kentucky and Indiana found evidence that they believe indicate cantaloupes grown in southwestern Indiana may be a source of the ongoing Salmonella Typhimurium outbreak. FDA officials are actively investigating potential sources of the outbreak, and will continue to update the public as more specific information becomes available.

2 dead, 50 ill in Kentucky with Salmonella from Indiana cantaloupes; multi-state outbreak unfolding

A strain of salmonella associated with two deaths and 50 illnesses in Kentucky since early July has been found in cantaloupes tested by the state, public health officials said Friday.

Acting Public Health Commissioner Steve Davis issued a statement Friday advising Kentuckians to avoid eating cantaloupes that were grown in southwestern Indiana.

“In addition, health care providers are encouraged to be mindful of patients who may have symptoms consistent with salmonellosis and report all cases to the local health department,” Davis said.

Illnesses have occurred statewide and many counties have people who have been sickened, including some in Central and Eastern Kentucky, said Beth Fisher, a spokeswoman for the Cabinet for Health and Family Services.

Cases are most concentrated around Owensboro and in far Western Kentucky, where both deaths occurred, Fisher said.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is collaborating with public health officials in affected states and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to investigate the ongoing outbreak, including tracing the source of the affected melons and shipments of melons that may have been contaminated.

A table of cantaloupe-related outbreaks is available at http://bites.ksu.edu/cantaloupe-related-outbreaks.

NC cantaloupe grower lacked audits, traceability; all melons recalled

Food safety needs to be marketed at retail, otherwise consumers have no idea what they are buying.

Hucksters and posers can gas on about how their food is natural, sustainable, local and comes from a farmer I can look in the eye, but I’d rather know the food safety program behind the fruit and veg, along with the data to verify things are working.

Few hawkers, at a market or a supermarket, can answer those questions.

Consumers are left with faith-based food safety.

That faith usually rests with buyers at supermarkets and retailers.

So when it was revealed that Burch Farms had to recall the entire season’s worth of rock and honeydew melon because listeria was found and then it was discovered they had never had a food safety audit — a standard but inadequate minimal requirement to secure retail space — I wondered, who buys this stuff?

“The cantaloupes and honeydew melons involved in this expanded recall were sold to distributors between June 23rd and July 27th, in the following states: FL, GA, IL, KY, MA, MD, ME, MI, NC, NH, NJ, NY, OH, PA, SC, and VA, VT and WV. The melons may have further been distributed to retail stores, restaurants and food service facilities in other states.”

Complete distribution details on the melons are not available, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Everyone buys it.

The Packer reports today that Listeria contamination at the Burch Farms melon packing facility in Faison, N.C., was confirmed on Aug. 13.

Company spokeswoman Teresa Burch said it has not had its cantaloupe operation audited by a third party for food safety practices, and although the company has traceability programs for other items, there is none in place for its melons.

Burch Equipment LLC, doing business as Burch Farms, originally recalled about 5,200 cantaloupes July 28 after the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Microbiological Data Program found listeria on one melon at retail during a random sampling.

The grower expanded the recall to include 188,900 cantaloupes Aug. 3 and corrected the variety from athena to caribbean golds. That expansion came after the FDA revealed it had found “unsanitary conditions” at the Burch packing shed.

Owner Jimmy Burch Sr. said he uses the sanitizer SaniDate in his packing facility’s water. According to the Burch Farms website, the operations are audited by PrimusLabs.

PrimusLabs in-house counsel Ryan Fothergill confirmed that the company has audited the leafy greens processing and field operations at Burch Farms but not the cantaloupe operation. Fothergill said Primus records show its staff was last at the Burch operation in March.

Burch said he planted only about 10 acres of honeydews for this season. The entire crop went to wholesalers. He said his farm has not had food safety issues in the past.

Of course not. Ignorance is bliss. And that’s the way growers and sellers prefer it. Market food safety at retail.