More than 200 million eggs produced by an Indiana company have been recalled over the weekend, after various cases of salmonella were linked back to the farm's produce. According to a report from the federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Rose Acre Farms were forced to issue the recall after officials traced these cases back to the company's facility in North Carolina.
They learned about a cluster of salmonella outbreaks in multiple states last month, leading to investigators working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as well as state authorities, to find the source of the problem. This eventually brought them to an egg farm in Hyde County, North Carolina. So far, 22 people have been sickened with salmonella from this oversight.
Affected eggs were sold under multiple brand names, including Country Daybreak, Coburn Farms, Crystal Farms, Sunshine Farms, and Glenview. These eggs found their way into homes from all sorts of places, as these brands are sold in a multitude of locations.
They were sent out to grocery stores and restaurants in nine states, including Colorado, Florida, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Virginia and West Virginia. The list of locations was extensive, with some eggs reportedly being sold to Walmart and in Food Lion grocery stores, and other deliveries made to Waffle House.
Anyone in possession of any eggs that have are potentially affected have been instructed to throw them away, or return them for a refund instead. Salmonella can cause numerous symptoms, including fever, diarrhea, nausea and abdominal pain. However, it can be even worse for those with weakened immune systems, such as young children and the elderly - even resulting in death in some cases.
Any egg cartons affected by the recall are apparently labelled with the plant number P-1065, with packing dates ranging from 011 through 102, so if you have any in your home it is possible to identify them and get rid of them.
Rose Acre Farms is the second-largest egg producer in the United States, which is why this problem has affected so much of the country. Their farm in Hyde County has about three million egg-laying hens alone, producing about 2.3 million eggs a day. The company released a statement in which they confirmed they have an inspector from the Department of Agriculture on-site daily, which should have helped them avoid such a debacle.
"The Hyde County farm has never before experienced a recall or serious safety violation," Rose Acre Farms' statement read, adding that the recall "was conducted in full cooperation with the FDA".
A recent outbreak in the Midwest traced to chicken salad from an Iowa food processing company made at least 265 people sick, and led to one death. The CDC estimates that salmonella causes around 1.2 million illnesses and 450 deaths every year in the United States, so is far more harmful than many of us may expect.
Hopefully those affected by the issue recover in the near future, and the recall stops any further cases from being found.