According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the reported illnesses range from April 15 to May 12. The sicknesses have been reported in Alabama, California, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, and Tennessee. The largest number of reported illnesses is coming from Georgia.
The cause of this particular outbreak is yet unknown and is being investigated. Health officials in Louisiana, however, believe food is to blame.
Commonly, E. coli sickness is caused from the bacterial strain O157, which is routinely tested for by food manufactures. However, this outbreak is caused by the less-common strain O145. It is one of the six strains, known as the STEC “big six,” which the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) only recently mandated testing for in ground beef.
Before this spring, only 1 type of E. coli bacteria (O157:H7) was tested, but now the USDA requires testing for the E. coli serogroups: O26, O103, O45, O111, O121, and O145.
“EMSL’s microbiologists have had experience working on STEC “Big 6” testing long before the USDA regulation went into effect, and our sales representatives can help clients navigate this new regulatory environment,”
For more information about EMSL’s food testing division, please contact EMSL at 800-220-3675, info@EMSL.com or visit www.EMSL.com or www.foodtestinglab.com.
About EMSL Analytical, Inc.
EMSL Analytical is a full service testing company providing quality lab services under the same private ownership since 1981. Including the corporate lab facility in Cinnaminson, NJ, EMSL Analytical operates over thirty laboratories nationwide in the US and Canada. We provide analytical services for environmental, indoor air quality (IAQ), industrial hygiene, forensics and materials science, consumer products, food safety, PCR, pharmaceutical, asbestos, lead, and radiological samples. The company has an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations, as well as state and federal regulating bodies.