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Recent Salmonella Outbreaks

July 02, 2018

By van der Veen, Hartshorn, Levin & Lindheim

Outbreak of Salmonella in Kellogg’s Honey Smacks Cereal

A salmonella outbreak has caused dozens of people to get violently ill in the past week, according to The New York Times. The outbreak has been expanded to more than dozen states, including Pennsylvania. While no deaths have yet been reported, 73 people have become sick across the country, 24 of which required hospitalization. The contamination is so widespread that federal authorities are urging consumers to throw out all 15.3 ounce boxes of Kellogg’s Honey Smacks with “best if used by dates” between June 14, 2018 and June 14, 2019.

Salmonella Contaminated Pre-Cut Fruit Earlier in the Month

Cereal is not the only product to be recently affected by a salmonella outbreak. At least 60 people consumed salmonella-laced pre-cut fruit and became sick from the nasty bacteria. Pre-cut watermelon, cantaloupe, mixed fruit and honeydew melon was recalled after 60 people in eight states were affected. Nearly a dozen distributors were found to have been carrying the salmonella contaminated fruit, and issues were recalled for the following: Jay C, Walgreens, Costco, Whole Foods/Amazon, Walmart, Sprouts, Owen’s, Kroger, Payless, and Trader Joe’s.

What is Salmonella?

Salmonella is commonly referred to simply as food poisoning, as it is the most common type of food borne contaminant that causes sickness. Tens of millions of salmonella cases are reported worldwide each year, and most people only have to suffer through a few days (4-7 typically) of serious stomach cramps, vomiting, diarrhea, weakness, and dehydration before they get better on their own. Some are affected more seriously, and require hospitalization. For the very young and the very old, or for people who already have a medical condition, salmonella can be fatal. Symptoms include the following, according to WebMD:

  • Stomach cramps;
  • Fever;
  • Diarrhea;
  • Dehydration;
  • Pain in the joints that can last for months or even longer;
  • Pain while urinating, or pain or itchy/watery eyes;
  • Bloody stools;
  • Vomiting;
  • Headache;
  • Sick to the stomach; and
  • Cold and chills.

When salmonella gets into the bloodstream, it can affect the lining of the blood vessels, the tissue surrounding the brain or spinal cord, the lining of the heart or valves, and the bone marrow.

Call an Experienced Philadelphia Attorney Immediately

Salmonella poisoning is extremely unpleasant at best, and life threatening at worst. For mild cases of salmonella, the victim will lose a week or more of work and time with friends and family, suffer through days on end of the worst type of flu symptoms imaginable, and lose strength and feel weak for up to a month or more after. More serious cases involve expensive ER visits, hospitalization, long term health complications and pain, and even death. While Kellogg announced that it would issue a refund for affected products, consumers who got sick from this cereal, whether they purchased it themselves or not, have the right to be financially compensated for their pain and suffering, medical expenses, and lost wages. For victims of salmonella, a refund is simply laughable. If you or your loved one came down with flu like symptoms after eating a Kellogg’s product, you need to get in contact with an attorney immediately. Call the Philadelphia personal injury attorneys of van der Veen, Hartshorn, Levin & Lindheim today.


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