What to Know
- A multistate outbreak of Listeria monocytogenes is being linked to hard-boiled eggs from a Georgia distributor.
- Seven people, including a person is Pennsylvania, have become sick. One person died, CDC says.
- The eggs have been used in products like egg salad, salads and deviled eggs. You are urged not to eat those products you purchased at stores.
The hard-boiled eggs you are being served could be making you sick.
That’s the message of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as they announced a multistate outbreak of Listeria monocytogenes found in hard-boiled eggs supplied in bulk to food service providers.
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“CDC is concerned that bulk, fresh hard-boiled eggs produced by Almark Foods of Gainesville, Georgia, are contaminated with Listeria and have made people sick,” CDC said in the Food Safety Alert posted Wednesday night.
One person in Texas has died and four more in other states have been hospitalized as a total of seven people have gotten sick from April 2017 to November 2019, the CDC said. One of those sickness was reported in Pennsylvania. One sickness occurred in a newborn whose mother had contracted Listeria while pregnant.
The potentially sickening eggs were “peeled, hard-boiled, and packaged in plastic pails of various sizes,” then sent to retailers, the CDC said. The eggs could then have been turned into ready-to-eat foods like egg salad, deviled eggs or salads.
“Consumers will not be able to tell if products they’ve purchased from stores contain these eggs,” the CDC said.
The eggs have a 49-day shelf life and the warning covers all bulk eggs, no matter when they need to be used by, the CDC said.
The CDC urged retailers to not use the bulk eggs and to clean surfaces that encountered the contaminated eggs.
As for what consumers – especially people 65 and older, pregnant women, people battling cancer and people on dialysis who are more prone to Listeria – can do, CDC suggests throwing away any store-purchased items using hard-boiled eggs.
People should ask a restaurant if they use Almark eggs prior to purchase. If the eatery does use those eggs, or doesn't know what hard-boiled eggs they use, the consumers shouldn't buy the egg product, the CDC said.
People should also thoroughly clean any surfaces where the egg products may have touched, the CDC said.
“This advice does not include eggs hard-boiled at home or homemade products made with those eggs, such as egg salad or deviled eggs,” the CDC said.
The warning doesn't cover any of Almark's direct-to-consumer eggs or eggs cooked by restaurants or retailers.
A person who answered the phone at Almark Foods in Gainesville, Georgia, told the AP the company did not have any comment. Almark has four manufacturing facilities and delivers nationwide, according to its website.