Following a widespread recall of No Name brand chicken burgers issued in early June due to a salmonella outbreak, Health Canada says it has received nine more reports of the illness.
A public health warning posted on the Government of Canada website has been updated to reflect the new reports. Health Canada is warning Canadians that frozen breaded chicken products containing raw poultry pose an increased risk to individuals preparing this food, and are advising Canadians to follow food safety practices while doing so.
The initial recall came three months after the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) issued a press release warning of a rise in Salmonella Enteritidis infections over the past several years.
“Several of the ill individuals involved in the outbreak reported having eaten No Name brand chicken burgers before their illness occurred. A food sample of No Name brand Chicken Burgers (1kg), with a best before date of February 6, 2019, tested positive for Salmonella Enteritidis,” the public health notice warned.
The public health agency initially reported that there were 59 cases of salmonella-linked illness across eight provinces between March and May. That number has been updated to 68 to reflect the new cases.
The cases have been discovered across nine provinces and territories; British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Labrador and the Northwest Territories. The highest number of cases in any province or territory were found in Quebec, with 23.
In total, 15 people have now been hospitalized, up from 10. No deaths in connection with the outbreak have been reported. The average age of those affected is 35, with ages ranging from one to 85 years old. The majority of those being treated are male.
Officials said symptoms include fever, chills, diarrhea, abdominal cramps, headache, nausea and vomiting.
Health Canada is warning Canadian not to eat raw or under cooked chicken products and to wash hands thoroughly before handling frozen or raw chicken products.
Those suffering from salmonella infections will in most cases recover from symptoms in a few days.