British Columbia (B.C.) is one of several provinces experiencing an ongoing Salmonella outbreak. The outbreak has been linked to red onions, imported from the United States. To date, 69 cases have been reported in B.C. in all regional health authorities since mid-June.
A collaborative investigation has identified that the contaminated red onions are coming from Thomson International Inc. of Bakersfield, California, USA and Thomson International Inc. has recalled all varieties of onions that could have come in contact with potentially contaminated red onions. Do not eat, use, sell or serve any red, white, yellow, and sweet yellow onions from Thomson International Inc., Bakersfield, California, USA, or any products made with these onions. Recalled products are listed on the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) website. The investigation is ongoing and other onions from the U.S. may be implicated in this outbreak; check the CFIA website for the most recent information.
There is no evidence to suggest that onions grown in Canada are associated with this outbreak. If you do not know the source of your onions, do not eat them.
B.C. is collaborating with regional Health Authorities, the Public Health Agency of Canada, provincial public health partners, CFIA, and Health Canada to investigate outbreak. Information about the investigation and food safety can be found on the Public Health Agency of Canada website
Salmonella infection causes symptoms including diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps that develop six hours to 7 days after exposure and usually lasts four to seven days. Most people recover without treatment. Children under five years of age and adults over 65 years of age, and people with weakened immune systems are more likely to have a severe illness. If you are experiencing severe or ongoing symptoms, contact HealthLinkBC at 8-1-1 or see your health care provider.