CDC connects backyard poultry to national Salmonella outbreak

ATLANTA – The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and public health officials recently confirmed an outbreak of Salmonella infections linked to backyard poultry.

The agency’s current numbers state that 109 people in 29 states have been infected with one of the Salmonella strains. According to the CDC, 33 people have been hospitalized, but no deaths have been reported.

During the current outbreak, 43% of the people infected are children under the age of five. 

“Backyard poultry can carry Salmonella germs even if they look healthy and clean,” the CDC said in its statement. “These germs can easily spread to anything in the areas where the poultry live and roam. You can get sick from touching your backyard poultry or anything in their environment and then touching your mouth or food and swallowing Salmonella.”

The map provided by the CDC showed the most cases of Salmonella occurring in Missouri, Texas and Oklahoma. 

CDC asked backyard flock owners to practice regular hand washing, supervise children around flocks and handle eggs safely among other preventative measures.

The agency advised stores that sell poultry to clean and sanitize poultry display areas between shipments of new poultry, use hatcheries that take steps to reduce Salmonella on-farm and keep customers healthy by providing handwashing stations or hand sanitizers next to poultry display areas in addition to keeping those displays out of reach, especially of children.