Jaquith Strawberry Farm Source of E. Coli Outbreak in Oregon That Has Sickened 14 and Left 1 Dead

According to Oregon Public Health Division officials, deer feces found in strawberry fields in Yamhill and Washington counties were the source of E. Coli infections that have left at least 15 people sick and one dead in July.

Oregon residents who were sickened were those in Clatsop, Multnomah and Washington counties.  Seven of the 15 who became ill required hospitalization, and the individual who died was an elderly woman from Washington County who succumbed after suffering kidney failure associated with the E. Coli infection.

Oregon Public Health Division researchers found that six samples collected of deer feces matched the strain of the bacteria found in those who were sickened.  Investigators aren’t certain why E. Coli has never been revealed in strawberries in the United States before due to the fact that they have known for over 15 years that deer can carry the E. Coli bacteria.  E. Coli has commonly been found in other crops including sprouts, apple cider and spinach.

Dr. Katrina Hedberg, Oregon’s state epidemiologist, said that researchers are still uncertain about why the outbreak occurred at this place and time, and that perhaps the exceptionally wet and cold summer experienced this year may have factored in to the feces coming in contact with the strawberries.

The locations where the tainted strawberries were sold include numerous farmers’ markets and retail outlets including Hand’s Berry Stands, Lana Dee Farms, Lee Farms and Fir Point Farms, Valley Berry Farms and numerous other roadside/farm stands.  A complete list can be found at http://www.oregon.gov/ODA/FSD/strawberries.shtml.

Berries that have not been implicated in this E. Coli outbreak include strawberries sold since August 1st, 2011, strawberries sold in grocery stores, those grown in southwest Washington State, strawberries picked at Acquit Strawberry Farm’s U-pick field and various types of berries other than strawberries.

Consumers who may have the frozen berries in their freezers are urged to discard them.  None of the contaminated strawberries remain on the market.

E. Coli food poisoning infection is one form of food poisoning that leave most individuals with only mild “stomach-flu” like E. Coli symptoms, but some individuals are at increased risks of developing serious complications such as kidney failure.

Those who have become ill after eating potentially contaminated foods should contact the food poisoning attorneys New York at Brown Chiari.  Call us today for a free evaluation of your case with one of our talented injury attorney Buffalo.

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