Salmonella outbreak linked to sprouts has sickened nearly 100 people

A salmonella outbreak linked to alfalfa sprouts has sickened some 94 people in 16 states and the District of Columbia, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported Tuesday.

Health officials said those first cases became known November 1, with many getting ill after eating alfalfa sprouts in products from Jimmy John’s Gourmet Sandwiches outlets. The Food and Drug Administration said Monday that those vegetables came from Tiny Greens Organic Farm.

Tiny Green’s alfalfa sprouts and spicy sprouts, which have alfalfa sprouts plus radish and clover sprouts, were distributed in 4-ounce and 5-pound containers to farmers’ markets, grocery stores and restaurants including Jimmy John’s.

In addition to a variety of sprouts, the Urbana, Illinois, produce company distributes arugula, broccoli, fennel, cauliflower, onion, radish and other items, according to its website.

The FDA said consumers shouldn’t eat the sprouts and restaurants shouldn’t serve them. They should instead be thrown away, the agency said.

In a letter to Jimmy John’s franchisees, founder Jimmy John Liautaud said that the chain had pulled sprouts from all its Illinois establishments after store locations came up negative for the bacteria.

About 24% of those sickened in that outbreak were hospitalized, the CDC said. No deaths have been linked to the outbreak.

The FDA said Monday that the sprouts were distributed in Indiana, Iowa, Missouri and possibly other Midwestern states, with roughly half the illnesses occurring in Illinois.

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