Bacteria Water

Florida cucumber grower is linked to Salmonella outbreak that has sickened nearly 450 people nationwide

Federal officials revealed that samples from a Florida cucumber farmer match a salmonella strain responsible for infecting nearly 450 individuals and hospitalizing over 125 across the country, including 52 people in Florida.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has said that samples collected by Bedner Growers in Delray Beach in Florida have identified Salmonella braenderup, which matches a strain of bacteria responsible for some of (but not all of) the illnesses reported in 31 states and District of Columbia between March 11 and June 4, 2024.

Steve Bedner, the owner of Bedner Growers told the Associated Press the canal water wasn’t applied to edible parts on the cucumber plants but that it was used as subsoil irrigation, calling it a “common industry practice” which complies with federal regulations.

Fresh Start Produce Sales of Delay Beach , a supplier of Bedner Growers, announced that they would be recalling all whole cucumbers sent to certain states between May 17 and May 21, 2024 due to possible salmonella contamination.

Other strains of Salmonella were also detected in soil and water samples collected by Bedner Growers.

Cucumbers were consumed by nearly 70% of people who fell ill.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) say that “the actual number of people affected by this outbreak may be much higher”, because people who recover without medical assistance or testing often don’t seek it.

Cucumbers sold by Bedner Growers have been removed off the shelves.

Salmonella symptoms can begin anywhere between six hours and six days following contact. They include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea that is bloody and fever.

The CDC suggests that you take the following precautions to prevent salmonella.

  • Rinse all fruits and vegetables thoroughly before eating.

  • Separate raw meat, poultry, and seafood from food that will not be cooked.

  • Use an electronic food thermometer to ensure that you are cooking your food at a high enough temperature to kill germs.

  • If the temperature outside is higher than 90degF or two hours, then you should refrigerate perishable foods within an hour.

  • Thaw foods in the fridge, not on the countertop.