Health & Fitness

Egg recall grows, but state likely unaffected

A sign warns customers Thursday of the recall of certain lots of eggs that had been sold at a supermarket in Los Angeles. The number of eggs recalled this week grew to 550 million in several states including Washington, but state health officials have seen no increase in illness. (AP Photo)
A sign warns customers Thursday of the recall of certain lots of eggs that had been sold at a supermarket in Los Angeles. The number of eggs recalled this week grew to 550 million in several states including Washington, but state health officials have seen no increase in illness. (AP Photo) Associated Press

Grocers and Washington state health authorities say a massive recall of potentially contaminated eggs probably won't have any effect on the South Sound region.

Two Iowa egg producers have recalled a half-billion eggs after laboratory tests confirmed salmonella bacteria. More than 1,000 people across the country have already been sickened, and the toll of illnesses is expected to increase.

Spokespersons for two major supermarket chains in Washington, Fred Meyer and Safeway, said Friday that none of the recalled eggs was sold at their Washington outlets. Likewise, QFC stores reported no potentially contaminated eggs in their stores.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention included Washington state on the list of affected states, but health officials believe that few, if any, potentially contaminated eggs were distributed here.

Washington State Health Department spokesman Don Moyer said there has been no evidence of any unusual uptick in food poisoning in Washington caused by contaminated eggs.

In a normal year, the state expects to see some 600 to 800 salmonella-related illnesses in Washington caused by a variety of sources, Moyer said. There’s been no noticeable increase in reported cases here.

Iowa’s Hillandale Farms said Friday that it was recalling more than 170 million eggs. The company did not say if its action was connected to the recall by Wright County Egg, another Iowa farm that recalled 380 million eggs earlier this week, but the FDA said the recalls are related.

The strain of salmonella causing the poisoning is the same in both cases: salmonella enteritidis.

The eggs recalled Friday were distributed under the brand names Hillandale Farms, Sunny Farms, Sunny Meadow, Wholesome Farms and West Creek. The new recall applies to eggs sold between April and August.

South Sound residents can ensure that their eggs aren’t affected by inspecting the code numbers printed on the cartons and comparing it with a recall list at www.egg  safety.org  .

Dates and codes can be found stamped on the end of the egg carton or printed on the case label. The plant number begins with the letter P and then the number. The Julian date follows the plant number, for example: P-1720 223. The Julian date is the date the eggs were packaged as counted from Jan. 1 onward. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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