Food Poisoning Strikes Food Safety Meeting

Friday, 18 Apr 2014 04:43 PM

By Nick Tate

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How's this for irony? Maryland health officials are investigating a suspected outbreak of food poisoning among government and business leaders attending a national Food Safety Summit.
 
The Baltimore City Health Department said at least four people have reported they developed diarrhea, nausea, and other symptoms after eating a meal during the conference held April 8-10 at the Baltimore Convention Center.
 
According to NBC News, the annual meeting attracted more than 1,500 food safety professionals, including staff from federal agencies as well as businesses such as McDonald's, Tyson, Chiquita, and ConAgra Foods.
 
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"We have not yet determined how people became ill, and we want your help to do so, even if you did not get sick," wrote officials with the outbreak response unit for the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.
 
News of the investigation spread this week when Bill Marler, a Seattle food safety lawyer, posted online a survey sent to him and other conference speakers and attendees asking them to report what they ate and how they felt after the meeting.
 
City health officials reportedly inspected the convention center and its food service provider, Centerplate. The company was issued a violation notice for condensation dripping from one of the two ice machines in the kitchen, which has been fixed.
 
Several officials with the federal Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention attended the summit, but no one contacted by NBC News reported getting sick.
 

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