(CBS News) – More people are becoming sick from a salmonella outbreak that prompted a massive egg recall. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says at least 35 people across nine states have been infected by the bacteria. Hospitals treated 11 victims.
A dozen more cases of salmonella traced to eggs have been reported since the CDC first announced the outbreak nearly a month ago, reports CBS News correspondent Anna Werner. The Food and Drug Administration has linked the outbreak to Rose Acre Farms and the company’s facility in North Carolina.
Last month, the company voluntarily recalled over 206 million eggs due to potential contamination. The recalled eggs were distributed between January 11 and April 12 to grocery chains and restaurants in at least nine states. The eggs were sold under multiple brand names, including Coburn Farms, Country Daybreak, Food Lion, Glenview, Great Value, Nelms, Sunshine Farms, Publix, and Sunups.
The FDA reported during an inspection of Rose Acre Farms beginning in March finding more than a dozen rodents. They also say employees touched dirty equipment and their bodies without washing their hands.
In a statement, Rose Acre Farms says it’s “not only corrected deficiencies at the farm” but “also taken steps to ensure the farm meets or exceeds the standards of the FDA and USDA.”
To see if the eggs you purchased might be recalled, visit FDA.gov to see the specific list of products.
If it turns out you have recalled eggs, the CDC says do not eat them. Either throw them away or return them for a refund.
How long should you cook your eggs?
Eating raw or undercooked eggs increases the risk of illness. The FDA recommends cooking eggs until both the yolk and the white are firm. Scrambled eggs should not be runny. Casseroles, quiches, soufflés and other dishes containing eggs should be cooked to 160° F. Use a food thermometer to be sure, because the length of cooking time may vary.
“You have to cook an egg solid, that means the yolks and the whites are cooked through,” Werner explained on CBSN. “Don’t reheat your eggs.”
For recipes that call for eggs to remain raw or undercooked, such as Caesar salad dressing, use eggs that have been specially treated to destroy salmonella, or buy pasteurized egg products.
Never leave cooked eggs or egg dishes out of the refrigerator for more than 2 hours (or for more than 1 hour if the temperature is above 90° F). Bacteria grow quickly at warm temperatures.
The FDA also urges consumers to wash their hands with hot, soapy water before and after handling raw eggs and raw egg-containing foods. And be sure to thoroughly clean food preparation surfaces and utensils that may have come in contact eggs to reduce the risk of spreading salmonella.