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An outbreak of Salmonella saint-paul infection associated with beansprouts

  • M. O'Mahony (a1), J. Cowden (a1), B. Smyth (a1), D. Lynch (a1), M. Hall (a2), B. Rowe (a2), E. L. Teare (a3), R. E. Tettmar (a3), A. M. Rampling (a4), M. Coles (a4), R. J. Gilbert (a5), E. Kingcott (a6) and C. L. R. Bartlett (a1)...

Summary

In March 1988, there was an outbreak of infection by a strain of Salmonella saint-paul with a distinctive antigenic marker. A total of 143 reports were received between 1 March and 7 June. Preliminary investigations suggested that raw beansprouts were a possible source of infection and a case-control study confirmed the association. S. saint-paul of the epidemic type was isolated from samples of beansprouts on retail sale in different cities in the United Kingdom and from mung bean seeds on the premises of the producer who was most strongly associated with cases. In addition, Salmonella virchow PT34 was isolated from samples of raw beansprouts and was subsequently associated with seven cases of infection. Four other serotypes of salmonella were also isolated from beansprouts. On 8 April the public were advised to boil beansprouts for 15 seconds before consumption, and the premises of the one producer associated with many cases were closed. As a result of these actions there was a significant decrease in the number of infections with S. saint-paul.

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Copyright

Corresponding author

Correspondence to: Dr J. M. Cowden, PHLS Communicable Disease Surveillance Centre, 61 Colindale Avenue, London NW9 5EQ.

References

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Edwards, PR, Bruner, DW. The occurrence of multiple types of paratyphoid bacilli in infections of fowls, with special reference to two new Salmonella species. J Infect Dis 1940; 66: 218–21.
Andrews, WH, Mislivec, PB, Wilson, CR, et al. Microbiological hazards associated with bean sprouting. J Assoc Off Anal Chem 1982; 65: 241–8.
Portnoy, BL, Goepfert, JM, Harmon, SM. An outbreak of Bacillus cereus food poisoning resulting from contaminated vegetable sprouts. Am J Epidemiol 1973; 103: 589–94.
Centre for Disease Control. Foodborne and waterborne disease outbreaks annual summary – 1973. HEW Publ/ CDC – 1975; 75–8185.
Patterson, JE, Woodburn, MJKlebsiella and other bacteria on alfalfa and bean sprouts at the retail level. J Food Sci 1980; 45: 492–5.
Brown, KL, Oscroft, CA, eds. Guidelines for the hygienic manufacture and retail sale of sprouted seeds with particular reference to Mung beans. Technical Manual No. 25, Campden Food and Drink Research Association,1989.

An outbreak of Salmonella saint-paul infection associated with beansprouts

  • M. O'Mahony (a1), J. Cowden (a1), B. Smyth (a1), D. Lynch (a1), M. Hall (a2), B. Rowe (a2), E. L. Teare (a3), R. E. Tettmar (a3), A. M. Rampling (a4), M. Coles (a4), R. J. Gilbert (a5), E. Kingcott (a6) and C. L. R. Bartlett (a1)...

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