PLAINS TOWNSHIP, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) – Eggs are considered one of nature’s most nutritious and economical foods. But hundreds of millions of eggs are part of a nationwide recall thanks to a worsening salmonella scare. As Eyewitness News Reporter Mark Hiller explains, part of that scare is here in Pennsylvania.
Before you fry up that egg for breakfast, there’s something the CDC wants you to know. Six people in Pennsylvania are among at least 35 confirmed cases of salmonella poisoning linked to a massive nationwide egg recall. The nearly 207 million eggs in question were sold under different brands to various retailers including Walmart. They were also distributed to several restaurants such as Waffle House. Even though the recall was announced last month, the number of salmonella cases is growing.
“Salmonella can be very nasty,” said Geisinger Wyoming Valley Emergency Department Doctor Shawn Clark. While he hasn’t treated any patients because of the current scare, he knows what salmonella bacteria can do. “You could have vomiting, diarrhea, fevers. Sometimes the fever can be high. Abdominal cramping. Usually the diarrhea does not involve blood but sometimes it can involve blood.”
Dr. Clark says some individuals are more vulnerable than others. “The young, older people as well as people who have, say, diabetes, heart problems, other chronic medical conditions.”
While salmonella symptoms are painfully obvious, how eggs pick up the bacteria is not quite clear. That’s because an infection can occur inside the hen and in the egg after its laid. The affected eggs were traced to a single facility in Hyde County, North Carolina belonging to Rose Acre Farms. Even if you throw out the eggs, they could cause cross contamination including in your refrigerator. Dr. Clark said, “So you should clean everything thoroughly, you know, disinfect. Use some Lysol wipes, things like that. Additionally you should wash your hands, you know, thoroughly and make sure you don’t contaminate other surfaces.”
The recalled eggs were sold with a “best by” date of April 2 or April 3. The brand names include Coburn Farms, Country Daybreak, Crystal Farms, Food Lion, Great Value (Walmart), Glenview and Sunshine Farms. The CDC recommends you discard the eggs immediately or return them for a refund.