Cookie Dough E.
coli Outbreak Remains Mystery
According to a CDC update
on the multistate outbreak of E. coli O157:H7 linked to Nestle cookie dough,
the agency is working with public health officials in several states and
collaborating with the FDA and FSIS to investigate the outbreak.
Preliminary results of the
investigation “indicate a strong association with eating raw prepackaged
cookie dough,” though the agency is still trying to figure out the exact
cause of the contamination. In late June, the FDA announced that it found a
strain of E. coli O157:H7 in a sample of the recalled cookie dough, but the
culture did not match the outbreak strain.
At last count, 80 persons from 31 states have been sickened. Of those cases,
70 have been confirmed by advanced DNA testing as having the outbreak strain,
35 have been hospitalized, and 10 developed hemolytic uremic syndrome. In
response to the outbreak, Nestle recalled 3.6 million packages of cookie
The Danville Nestle cookie dough plant linked to the outbreak received
clearance to restart manufacturing cookie dough July 9 and shipped out its
first shipment of cookie dough since the outbreak last week.
The agency continues to recommend that consumers not eat any variety of the
recalled dough. Of Nestle cookie dough packages have a “new batch” label then
they were not a part of the outbreak. The agency also reminds consumers that
they should not eat raw products that are meant to be cooked or baked before
The number of ill persons identified in each state is as follows: Arizona
(2), California (5), Colorado (6), Connecticut (1), Delaware (1), Georgia
(2), Iowa (2), Idaho (1), Illinois (7), Kentucky (2), Massachusetts (4),
Maryland (2), Maine (3), Minnesota (8), Missouri (1), Montana (1), North
Carolina (2), New Hampshire (2), New Jersey (1), Nevada (2), New York (1),
Ohio (3), Oklahoma (1), Oregon (1), Pennsylvania (2), South Carolina (1), Texas
(3), Utah (4), Virginia (2), Washington (6), and Wisconsin (1).