Why You Need to Check Your Eggs If You Live in One of These 9 States

A few days ago, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration published an announcement about the largest food recall this country’s seen since 2010. Over 200 million eggs have been recalled due to concerns about salmonella poisoning.

So far, 22 people have become ill from the strain Salmonella Braenderup, a less common form of salmonella. Indiana-based Rose Acre Farms issued the voluntary recall after federal officials traced the source of the infections to the company’s Hyde, North Carolina facility. This location produces more than 2 million eggs a day which are distributed throughout the East Coast.

Eggs sold directly to consumers and restaurants in New Jersey, New York, Colorado, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia should be checked for plant number P-1065. Additionally, there is a printed “Julian” date range on the side of the carton of 011 to 102.

Here are the brand names the eggs have been sold under:

  • Coburn Farms
  • Country Daybreak
  • Crystal Farms
  • Food Lion
  • Glenview
  • Great Value
  • Nelms
  • Sunshine Farms
  • Waffle House

As you can see from this list, the eggs have been served at Waffle House and sold at major retailers like Walmart and Food Lion. You can either destroy them or take them back to where you purchased them for a refund.

Symptoms of a salmonella infection include fever, diarrhea, vomiting, and abdominal cramps, which typically appear within 24 to 72 hours of exposure. The illness tends to last up to seven days, and most people recover on their own. Severe cases require hospitalization.

The CDC reported that there have been six hospitalizations and no deaths from this outbreak, but especially vulnerable populations include young children, the elderly, and those with compromised immune systems.

Complications from salmonella occur when the bacterial infection has spread from the intestines to the bloodstream and other parts of the body. If you suspect you’ve been exposed to salmonella, seek medical attention immediately.

Although Salmonella Braenderup is a rare strain, this isn’t the first time it’s been linked to food recalls and major illnesses. In 2014, peanut and nut butters were recalled by the nSpired Natural Foods company for potential contamination. And in 2012, mangoes and mango-containing products sold in the Pacific northwest were recalled due to an outbreak.

According to the CDC, if you purchased any of these eggs, you should dispose of them in a sealed bag and then disinfect your refrigerator. Use warm soapy water on the shelves or drawers where they may have been stored. Currently, they still consider this outbreak to be an open and active investigation.

For the full list of brand names and locations of where these eggs were sold, click here. Though you can’t see salmonella visibly, when shopping for eggs, check for any visible cracks, dirt, or dents, as bacteria can enter via any of those routes.

To be on the safe side, egg experts suggest washing the shells of your eggs before cracking them or using pasteurized, liquid eggs if you want to be extra cautious. These days, salmonella can live on the inner or outer part of an egg because it can be harbored in a chicken’s ovaries. Be vigilant!

Are you affected by this food recall? Have you ever been hit with salmonella poisoning? What are your food safety practices?

Live Science