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Empire Kosher chicken may have salmonella contamination, federal agency says

September 15, 2018

Consumers who bought chicken produced by Empire Kosher Poultry Inc. of Mifflintown, Juniata County, were alerted Friday about salmonella illnesses reported in northeastern and mid-Atlantic states that may be associated with raw chicken products.

They may include raw whole chicken or raw chicken parts and were sold to consumers from September 2017 to June 2018.

About half of affected patients have been hospitalized due to illness.

Consumption of food contaminated with salmonella can cause salmonellosis, one of the most common bacterial food-borne illnesses. The most common symptoms of salmonellosis are diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and fever within 12 to 72 hours after eating the contaminated product. The illness usually lasts four to seven days.

The health alert was issued “out of an abundance of caution” by the U.S. Agriculture Department and Empire Kosher regarding the company’s raw chicken items.

Consumers who have purchased these products, and may have them in their freezers, are urged to properly handle, prepare, and cook these raw chicken products.

The Agriculture Department’s Food Safety and Inspections Services on June 18 was notified of multiple salmonella illnesses within the northeastern and mid-Atlantic United States. Working in conjunction with public health partners, FSIS determined that there is a potential link between Empire Kosher brand raw chicken products and this illness cluster.

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