The US Is Experiencing 3 Different Types Of Foodborne Illness Outbreaks

For the lucky among us that haven't become sick from food poisoning, the experience can be downright grueling — from a few hours to a few days, you are so unwell there is no escaping the illness. It's truly one of the most exhausting experiences a human body can go through. So, naturally, when a significant number of people begin getting sick from foodborne illness, the Food and Drug Administration, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the general public start paying attention. When they occur, these outbreaks are investigated and traced back to any possible sources and information is then disseminated to the public so that the issue can be nipped in the bud before more people become sick.

When there are growing outbreaks, or if you become sick, your are encouraged to report the information to your local health department so it can be investigated if necessary (via CDC). In general, it's good to be aware of any situations as well and keep an eye out for public advisories so you can stay safe. Which is why it's important to know here are currently three of these outbreaks in the United States to be aware of.

What we know about the current foodborne illness outbreaks

The FDA has not released too much information yet about any of the three outbreaks, and has not announced any products or food linked back as the source of the spread (via Food Safety News). We do know, however, that there are three separate outbreaks currently being investigated with upwards of 55 people infected. The FDA has disclosed that 32 people have been infected by Cyclospora, 15 have been infected by E. Coli O121, and eight people are sick from Salmonella Typhimurium — so far. All three outbreaks are currently active investigations. The Cyclospora outbreak has initiated traceback procedures and a sample is being analyzed.

The CDC has not yet released any statement regarding the three outbreaks but assured Food Safety News that new information was on the way.

The FDA maintains a table of investigations that provides information as active investigations are conducted or closed. While not every investigation leads to a specific product or food produce item, "If a source and/or contributing factors are identified that could inform future prevention, FDA commits to providing a summary of those findings" and will then release a public advisory, the agency asserts (via FDA). So if there are any steps we can take as consumers to prevent the spread of these foodborne illnesses, we will definitely be informed in the coming weeks.