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Salmonella outbreak makes 30 people sick in Denmark



Salmonella outbreak makes 30 people sick in Denmark

An outbreak of Salmonella has sickened more than thirty people in Denmark.

According to the Statens Serum Institut (SSI), 31 people had been infected with the same type of monophasic Salmonella Typhimurium in recent months.

Patients became ill in April and May. Among them are twenty men and eleven women.

The cases are between 5 and 79 years old with an average age of 40 years. They live throughout the country with 11 cases in Hovedstaden, six in North Jutland and Syddanmark, five in Midtjylland and three in Sjælland.

SSI, the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration (Fødevarestyrelsen) and the DTU Food Institute are investigating the cause of the outbreak.

SSI involves sequencing whole-genome isolates from patients and interviewing sick people to try to identify a possible source of infection.

Whole genome sequencing of bacteria isolated from patients showed that they were very closely related and all belonged to sequence type 34.

Several Salmonella outbreaks
This is a different sequence type than the Salmonella Typhimurium outbreak in Denmark, which was linked to ground beef from England.

In March, April and May, the Statens Serum Institut registered 62 people infected with the same type of Salmonella.

The sick are 37 men and 25 women. Patients range from younger than 1 to 83 years old and the average age is 49 years old. At least 18 people were hospitalized, but no deaths were recorded.

Whole genome sequencing of bacteria isolated from patients revealed that they belonged to sequence type 19.

Interviews with patients revealed that 35 out of 37 people ate ground beef before the onset of the disease. A tracking link to Hilton Foods was established by examining the consumer purchasing data of eight patients. Meat was imported from England and further processed in the Danish branch of Hilton Foods.

Hilton Foods Danmark recalled a variety of ground beef products in May. Products were sold in Dagli’Brugsen, SuperBrugsen, 365 Discount, Coop, Irma and Kvickly stores nationwide.

“Hilton Foods Danmark A/S recently identified an issue regarding ground beef packaged in Denmark. After tracing this to an individual location of one of our suppliers, we have suspended all meat supplies from that location. This supplier is conducting a thorough investigation and all deliveries will remain suspended while the investigation is ongoing,” a Hilton Foods spokesperson said.

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