Massive salmonella outbreak linked to backyard chicken flocks

All of them reported eating pre-cut cantaloupe, watermelon, or a fruit salad mix with one or both of them.

A multistate salmonella outbreak has been linked to cut melons, and most of the illnesses have been reported in MI and Indiana.

The CDC said on Friday that 124 people have been sickened in 36 states after contact with live poultry, such as chicks and ducklings in backyard flocks.

North Carolina has had the most reported cases with 17, followed by Louisiana with 8 and 7 in Michigan, Minnesota and Oklahoma.

Most people who have been infected with this strain of Salmonella bought pre-cut melon at Walmart or Kroger stores in the Midwest.

There is only one reported case related to this outbreak in OH thus far.

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So far all the illnesses in Missouri have been traced to melon purchased at Walmart stores, but the CDC said the investigation is ongoing and the alert may expand to include other chains.

If you bought pre-cut melon at a Walmart in Missouri, throw it away. Now. Of the 60 cases reported, 31 (66%) have been hospitalized due to illness associated with the infection.

"In interviews, 55 (74%) of 74 ill people with information available reported contact with chicks or ducklings in the week before their illness started", the CDC said. Symptoms of salmonella include diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps 12 to 72 hours after being exposed to the bacteria.

Elderly people, infants and anyone with weak immune systems are more likely to have a severe illness.

This investigation is expanding rapidly.

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