Unbelievably, there is another ONION outbreak – following the Salmonella Newport outbreak linked to Thomson Onion and the Salmonella Oranienburg outbreak linked to Mexican Onions imported by ProSource and Keeler Farms. This time it is Salmonella Thompson (not to be confused with the supplier of adulterated onions in the Salmonella Newport outbreak) identified in Gills Onions. Gills onions are prepackaged, diced onions that were sold in plastic containers and contain, for the recall, sue by dates in August of 2023. The hope is that the tainted product is already off the shelves and no NEW injuries will be reported.
The onions, originally believed to have been distributed only in Western and Pacific Northwestern states, from Washington and Oregon to Idaho and Montana, as well as in California and Arizona, have now been identified as the source of Salmonella Thompson illnesses in 22 states – with many dozens ill and at least 15 hospitalizations. The onions are a favorite for preparing Thanksgiving meals adn for recipes that contain diced onions. Fortunately, this outbreak “appears” to have been caught before systemic problems and demand could have led to a larger and even more pervasive outbreak, like in 2020 and 2021 when the numbers of suspected victims easily reached the thousands. However, it is too early to tell as the number of victims seems to be growing by the hour.
Packages of diced yellow onions, red onions, and onions and celery, as well as a mix of onions, celery and carrots known as mirepoix. The products had use-by dates of August 2023, the Food and Drug Administration said Tuesday. The recall included 3 pound bags as well as 8 and10 ounce cups of onions and onion mixtures.
Some of the known retailers include Stater Bros. Markets, Bashas’ and Smart & Final stores.
Why Onions? 2020, 2021, and Now 2023 . . .
Foodpoisoningnews spoke to the national onion salmonella lawyer Ron Simon, who represented many of the ProSource Onion Salmonella Oranienburg victims in 2021, as well as the Thomson Onion Salmonella Newport victims in 2020. According to Simon, “the fact that onions are a common conduit of salmonella has a good deal to do with how they are raised and harvested. But it can also be because food manufacturers fail to prevent insect and animal infestations, fail to emphasize good manufacturing practices, do not enforce good persona hygiene, use contaminated water, or simply fail to maintain a clean and safe working environment.” Simon added:
“In each salmonella onion lawsuit, we have used discovery to find out how the onions have become contaminated and how to prevent future outbreaks”
This process is ongoing, obviously, as the Gills Onion salmonella outbreak represents one more break-down in onion production in the U.S.