(KETK) – CDC and public health officials are investigating a multi-state outbreak of Salmonella linked to raw turkey products.
Officials say 90 cases of Salmonella infections have been reported in 26 states, including cases in Florida.
Forty people have been hospitalized.
Indiana has reported 3 cases, Illinois has 9 and Kentucky has 1 so far.
According to the CDC, evidence indicates that raw turkey products from a variety of sources are contaminated and making people sick.
Those infected report eating different types and brands of turkey products purchased from many different locations. Two lived in a household where raw turkey pet food was fed to pets.
The outbreak has been identified in samples taken from raw turkey pet food, raw turkey products, and live turkeys.
The CDC has not identified a single, common supplier of raw turkey products or of live turkeys.
The agency advises consumers to follow these steps to help prevent Salmonella infection from raw turkey:
- Wash your hands. Salmonella infections can spread from one person to another. Wash hands before and after preparing or eating food, after contact with animals, and after using the restroom or changing diapers.
- Cook raw turkey thoroughly to kill harmful germs. Turkey breasts, whole turkeys, and ground poultry, including turkey burgers, casseroles, and sausage, should always be cooked to an internal temperature of 165°F to kill harmful germs. Leftovers should be reheated to 165°F. Use a food thermometer to check, and place it in the thickest part of the food.
- Don’t spread germs from raw turkey around food preparation areas. Washing raw poultry before cooking is not recommended. Germs in raw poultry juices can spread to other areas and foods. Thoroughly wash hands, counters, cutting boards, and utensils with warm, soapy water after they touch raw turkey. Use a separate cutting board for raw turkey and other raw meats if possible.
- CDC does not recommend feeding raw diets to pets. Germs like Salmonella in raw pet food can make your pets sick. Your family also can get sick by handling the raw food or by taking care of your pet.
- The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (USDA-FSIS) is monitoring the outbreak.
(This story was originally published July 20, 2018)