The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has opened an investigation into a multistate outbreak of Salmonella Stanley linked to cashew cheese products manufactured by a West Sacramento company. According to a report on Examiner.com, The Cultured Kitchen recalled all flavors of its cashew cheese products with an expiration date on or before April 19, 2014 on December 31, 2013. The California Department of Public Health noted that three were 15 cases of Salmonella Stanley reported in the Western United States. Three of those individuals required hospitalization.
Federal officials, based on epidemiologic and traceback investigations, have stated that consumption of the raw cashew cheese produced by The Cultured Kitchen is the likely source of the salmonella outbreak. Cashew cheese is a non-dairy product made from raw cashews and other ingredients. Between Aug. 1, 2011 and January 2013, 684 cases of Salmonella Stanley infections were identified in the European Union. This strain of salmonella is common in Southeast Asia from where the cashews used in the cheese are said to have been imported.
The most common symptoms of salmonella infections include fever, diarrhea, vomiting and abdominal cramps 12 to 72 hours after infection. In a majority of cases, the illness lasts four to seven days. Most of the patients recover without treatment. However, in some cases, patients may need to be hospitalized due to severe diarrhea, vomiting and dehydration. In most severe cases, salmonella infection may spread from the intestines to the blood stream and then to other body sites causing death. Elderly people, young children and those with impaired immune systems are most susceptible to serious infections.
Rights of Food Poisoning Victims
Food poisoning victims undergo not only significant physical discomfort, pain and suffering, but also incur medical expenses for hospitalization, medications and diagnostic tests. Many also lose income because of being unable to work while they are recovering. When food poisoning is caused by a contaminated or defective product, victims can seek compensation from the food producer, manufacturer and distributor. Damages that can be sought include medical expenses, lost wages, hospitalization, pain and suffering and emotional distress. An experienced California personal injury attorney will be able to advise victims and their families in such cases regarding their legal rights and options.