In a recent blog post, we talked about the recent multi-state Salmonella outbreak that was linked to raw bean sprouts served at Jimmy John’s restaurants in Illinois, Minnesota, and Wisconsin. Currently, the outbreak is being investigated by the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Illinois Department of Public Health, and the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection.
When a food poisoning outbreak is linked to a specific food retailer or distributor, the responsible party may be required to take certain steps, such as recalling the contaminated product, to protect consumers from further illness. In other cases, the responsible party voluntarily makes changes and takes precautions to eliminate the chance of further illnesses occurring because of their product. A recent example of a retailer taking steps to protect its consumers is Chipotle’s publicized changes to their food handling measures after it was linked to an E.Coli outbreak.
Jimmy John’s Measures to Reduce Further Illnesses
As a precautionary measure, Jimmy John’s temporarily removed bean sprouts from the menu at all of its 2,727 locations. In December 2017, eight individuals reported that they became ill after eating raw bean sprouts at Jimmy John’s locations in Illinois, Minnesota, and Wisconsin.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention requested that Jimmy John’s restaurants keep food handlers with diarrhea from working and potentially spreading their illnesses. Diarrhea is a common symptoms of Salmonellosis, as are vomiting, fever, chills, and nausea. Salmonella bacteria reside in the intestinal tracts of humans and other animals and can easily be cross-contaminated from fecal matter to food on handlers’ hands. Frequent hand-washing is one of the most effective safety measures against spreading illnesses in restaurants.
Who is Most at Risk for Salmonellosis?
When an individual becomes ill with Salmonella poisoning, his or her condition is known as Salmonellosis. Children, pregnant women, elderly individuals, and people with compromised immune systems are most at risk of developing Salmonellosis and other forms of food poisoning. Generally, adults with healthy immune systems do not need medical attention for food poisoning unless their symptoms worsen or do not subside within a few days to a week after they initially appear.
Individuals in the groups mentioned above are advised not to consume any type of raw bean sprout. This includes alfalfa, clover, radishes, and mung bean sprouts because these sprouts are a known carrier of foodborne illness. When sprouts are thoroughly cooked, they can safely be eaten by all populations.
Work with an Experienced Chicago Food Poisoning Attorney
If you were diagnosed with Salmonellosis or another type of food poisoning after eating in a restaurant, the restaurant may be liable for your related damages. Contact our team of experienced food poisoning attorneys at Newland & Newland, LLP today to set up your initial consultation with us to learn more. We serve clients in the Arlington Heights, Palatine, Rolling Meadows, Libertyville, Mundelein, Buffalo Grove, Schaumburg, Elk Grove, and Itasca areas.
(image courtesy of Markus Spiske)