The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is investigating yet another multistate outbreak of Salmonella. Where last week, a multistate outbreak of Salmonella Adelaide had been traced back to pre-cut melon produced and distributed by Caito Foods LLC, this new outbreak has been linked with a breakfast favorite: Kellogg’s Honey Smacks cereal.
As of September 5, 2018, 7130cases of Salmonella Mbandka have been reported across 36 states. While 34 hospitalizations have been reported, there have been no reported deaths at this time.
According to the CDC, the infected individuals range from less than 1 year to 95 years of age, with a median age of 57. Available data indicate that 69% of individuals that have been infected are female. The reported dates of illness range from March 3 to August 7, but according to the CDC, Salmonella can take up to 2 to 4 weeks to diagnose and report. As such, any illnesses that have occurred after August 4 may not have been reported yet.
As part of the investigation, interviews were conducted with 79 individuals who have become ill. Of the interviewees 61 individuals or 77% specifically reported consumption of Kellogg’s Honey Smacks cereal, according to the CDC.
On June 14, 2018, Kellogg’s issued a recall for Honey Smacks cereal. The recall includes 15.3 oz and 23 oz boxes of the cereal with a “best if used by” date of June 18, 2018 to June 18, 2019. The products have been distributed across the United States and also have had limited distribution in the Caribbean, Costa Rica, Guam, Guatemala, Mexico, Saipan, and Tahiti, according to a recall posted by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA.)
The CDC advises to throw out the recalled Honey Smacks cereal, and if it has been stored in a reusable container, to thoroughly wash the container with warm soapy water before further use to prevent the spread of germs to other products.
Common symptoms associated with Salmonella infection include fever, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and stomach cramps, which can begin occurring 12 to 72 hours after contact with the germ. If you are a health care provider practicing in one of the states affected by the outbreak, be cognizant of any patients who present with such symptoms.
The CDC will provide updates to the outbreak as information becomes available.
For the most recent case counts and states affected by the Salmonella outbreak linked to Kellogg’s Honey Smacks cereal, be sure to check out the Contagion® Outbreak Monitor.
Updated 9/5/2018 at 10:17 am EDT to reflect updated case counts.