As if the coronavirus pandemic wasn't enough, a growing majority of the United States has now been impacted by a salmonella outbreak.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported on Friday that 640 people from 43 states have been infected by salmonella and at least 85% of these cases have been hospitalized. The Food and Drug Administration has linked the outbreak to red, white, yellow, and sweet onions from Thomson International Inc.
The CDC said that some of these infected onions were sold at major grocery store chains like Walmart, Kroger, Fred Meyer, Publix, Giant Eagle, Food Lion, and H-E-B, under a variety of brand names. This has moved several companies including Taylor Farms and Giant Eagle to recall certain onion-based foods like fajita stir-fry, pizza, and diced raw onions.
The CDC is now warning people not to consume any onions. Also, people should check their homes to see if they bought food with any recalled produce.
"If you don't know where your onions are from, don't eat, serve, or sell them or any food prepared with them," the CDC said on Friday per CNN. "Do not eat them or try to cook the onions or other food to make it safe."
Infections have been reported in New York, California, Arizona, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and more. Signs of salmonella include diarrhea, fever, and stomach cramps. They can appear anywhere from six hours to six days after exposure to the bacteria. Children under 5 and those over 65-years-old with weakened immune systems are mostly to experience severe symptoms. Salmonella can spread from the intestines to other parts of the body, requiring hospitalization.