Foodborne Illness Outbreak Database

This database provides summaries of significant food and water related outbreaks occurring since 1984 caused by E. coli, Salmonella, Hepatitis A, Campylobacter and other pathogens. Read more »

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Fairbank Farms Ground Beef 2009

A cluster of illnesses with matching strains of E.coli O157:H7 was investigated by the Centers for Disease Control and state health departments, Cluster ID #0910MAEXH-1. On October 31, a recall of over 500,000 pounds of beef products from Fairbanks Farms was issued because the product was contaminated with E.coli O157:H7. At least some of the ill had consumed the beef prior to their illness onset. Two samples of ground beef recovered from a patients' homes yielded a strain of E.coli O157:H7 that matched the outbreak strain. Most of the illnesses occurred in September and October. Fairbank Farms had recalled its ground beef previously in 2007 and 2008, one of these instances was also for E.coli contamination. This outbreak occurred concurrently with an E.coli O157:H7 outbreak associated with South Shore Meats, also affecting persons in the Northeastern United States. The last known illness associated with this outbreak began November 6.

  • Outbreak began:
  • September 2009
  • Affected Country:
  • US
  • Affected States/Territories:
  • California, New York, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Maine, New Jersey
  • Organism(s):
  • E. coli O157:H7
  • Vehicle(s):
  • Beef, Ground Beef, Hamburger
  • Molecular Results Available:
  • Yes
  • Test Results:
  • EXHX01.0047/EXHA26.0332
  • Location(s):
  • Grocery stores
  • Brand Name(s):
  • Giant, Shaw's, Trader Joe's, BJ's, Fairbank Farms, Ford Brothers, Lancaster, Price Chopper, Wild Harvest
  • Total ill:
  • 32
  • Number ill by Case Definition Known:
  • Yes
  • Number Laboratory Confirmed Cases:
  • 32
  • Number Probable Cases:
  • 0
  • Number Possible Cases:
  • 0
  • Anyone Hospitalized:
  • Yes
  • Number Hospitalized:
  • 19
  • Any Deaths:
  • Yes
  • Number Dead:
  • 2

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