Jennie-O Turkey is recalling more than 91,000 pounds of raw turkey in what is proving to be an ongoing, nationwide salmonella outbreak. According to a CBS News report, this recall is the first tied to an outbreak the U.S. Department of Agriculture says has sickened 164 people across 35 states and caused one death in California. About half of those who became ill had to be hospitalized for treatment. Federal officials say they don’t know how many of those who were sickened ate products sold by Jennie-O, a subsidiary of food industry giant Hormel.
Additional raw turkey products from other companies are expected to be named in upcoming recalls as this investigation continues. The Jennie-O products being recall include one-pound packages of raw, ground turkey sold nationwide with a use-by date of Oct. 1 or Oct. 2. Officials say these products could still be in freezers. In addition to ground turkey, salmonella has also been detected in raw turkey pet food and live turkeys, an indication the bacteria is widespread in the turkey industry.
Symptoms and Dangers of Salmonella
The most common symptoms of salmonella infection include diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps. The illness typically lasts up to a week and most patients tend to recover without treatment. Victims show symptoms within 12 to 72 hours after the infection. However, a salmonella infection could also result in serious health complications.
In some cases, the diarrhea may be so severe that patients may require hospitalization. In these patients, the salmonella infection may spread from the intestines to the blood stream and then to other body sites. This can even prove fatal. Children, the elderly and those with compromised immune systems are most susceptible to this type of complication.
Protecting Your Rights
Food poisoning victims endure quite a bit of physical discomfort. They 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 a contaminated or defective product causes food poisoning, 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.