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Throw out these onions: Number of sick from salmonella outbreak continues to grow

A salmonella outbreak linked to fresh whole onions has now sickened nearly 900 people and put nearly 200 in the hospital.

The number of people sickened and hospitalized in a nationwide salmonella outbreak linked to fresh, whole onions from a region of Mexico has increased, the Centers for Disease Control said Tuesday. Multiple recalls for the onions have been issued.

The CDC said Tuesday that 892 people have now gotten sick as a result of consuming the red, white and yellow onions. That's an increase of 84 cases since Oct. 29 and 240 cases since a link to onions was first reported on Oct. 20. There have been 26 new reports of hospitalizations, bringing the total to 183. There have been no deaths associated with the outbreak.

Illnesses have now been reported in 38 states and Puerto Rico. Hawaii is the newest state to the list, having reported one case since Oct. 29.

Onions recalled by multiple companies since the outbreak was reported, were supplied by ProSource Produce and Keeler Family Farms. The onions were imported from Chihuahua, Mexico between July 1 and August 31, 2021.

Because onions have a shelf life of up to three months if properly stored, there is concern these products may still be in household kitchens and restaurants. Health experts urge anyone who knows they have these onions, or who don't know the source of their onions, to throw them away.

Most people infected with salmonella experience diarrhea, fever, and stomach cramps, according to the CDC. Symptoms usually form within six hours of swallowing the bacteria and most people recover in 4-7 days without treatment.

Children under age 5, adults 65 and older and people with weakened immune systems may experience more severe illness that may lead to hospitalization.

Here is a list of the states where people have reported getting sick and how many cases in each state, according to the CDC. The number in parentheses indicates how much of an increase in illnesses there has been since the last alert on Oct. 29. "NC" denotes no change.

  • Alabama - 5 (+2)
  • Arkansas - 17 (+2)
  • California - 14 (+2) 
  • Colorado - 3 (+2)
  • Connecticut - 5 (NC)
  • Florida - 43 (+4)
  • Georgia - 2 (NC)
  • Hawaii - 1 (+1)
  • Illinois - 48 (+1)
  • Indiana - 1 (NC) 
  • Iowa - 4 (+1) 
  • Kansas - 17 (+1)
  • Kentucky - 9 (NC)
  • Louisiana - 8 (+1)
  • Maryland - 63 (+3)
  • Massachusetts - 13 (NC) 
  • Michigan - 10 (NC) 
  • Minnesota - 25 (NC) 
  • Mississippi - 3 (+1)
  • Missouri - 51 (+10)
  • Nebraska - 9 (NC) 
  • New Jersey - 5 (NC) 
  • New Mexico - 11 (+1) 
  • New York - 20 (+1)
  • North Carolina - 23 (+5)
  • North Dakota - 4 (NC)
  • Ohio - 8 (+1)
  • Oklahoma - 114 (+7)
  • Oregon - 2 (NC)
  • Pennsylvania - 13 (+5) 
  • Puerto Rico - 4 (+1)
  • South Carolina - 4 (NC) 
  • South Dakota - 9 (+1) 
  • Tennessee - 14 (+2) 
  • Texas - 207 (+22)
  • Utah - 3 (NC) 
  • Virginia - 69 (+3) 
  • West Virginia - 1 (NC) 
  • Wisconsin - 30 (+3)

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