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Outbreak of Multidrug-Resistant Salmonella Typhimurium Associated with Ground Beef Served at a School Potluck

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An outbreak of gastroenteritis occurred among at least 47 persons attending a school potluck. Illness was associated with consumption of ground beef (estimated odds ratio, 16.3; 95% confidence interval, 2.2 to 338.3). Salmonella Typhimurium isolated from infected individuals and the implicated ground beef revealed identical pulsed-field gel electrophoresis patterns and was multidrug resistant. The implicated ground beef was improperly handled during the cooking process and stored above the U.S. Food and Drug Administration cooling temperature standard for >15 h before being served. This outbreak demonstrates the limitations of food safety regulations in settings where foods are prepared in the home environment for communal potlucks, bake sales, or other such gatherings held at schools, churches, or other institutions. Public health authorities should encourage school and other institutional administrators to develop policies that require dissemination of safe food preparation guidelines to prospective food handlers when such events are scheduled.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Alaska Department of Health and Social Services, 3601 C Street, Suite 540, Anchorage, Alaska 99503, USA 2: Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation, P.O. Box 515, Kodiak, Alaska 99615, USA 3: National Laboratory for Enteric Pathogens, Bureau of Microbiology, Laboratory Centre for Disease Control, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada R3E 3R2

Publication date: March 1, 2006

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    The Journal of Food Protection (JFP) is a refereed monthly publication. Each issue contains scientific research and authoritative review articles reporting on a variety of topics in food science pertaining to food safety and quality. The Journal is internationally recognized as the leading publication in the field of food microbiology with a readership exceeding 11,000 scientists from 70 countries. The Journal of Food Protection is indexed in Index Medicus, Current Contents, BIOSIS, PubMed, Medline, and many others.

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