Foodborne Illness Outbreak Database

This database provides summaries of significant food and water related outbreaks occurring since 1984 caused by E. coli, Salmonella, Hepatitis A, Campylobacter and other pathogens. Read more »

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2013 Norovirus Associated with a Caterer at an Event Center, Brooklyn Park, Minnesota

On December 10, 2013 a school nurse reported illnesses among members of a high school football team who had attended a banquet (Banquet “A”) held on December 6 at an event center located in Brooklyn Park. Staff from the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH), Brooklyn Park Environmental Health and Anika County Community Health and Environmental Services initiated an investigation. On December 12 MDH received a complaint from an individual who attended “Banquet B” at the event center on December 7, as well as two independent complaints from patrons who dined at Restaurant “A” on December 6 and December 7. Food served at therestaurant located at the event center and both banquets was provided by Caterer “X”. These reports were followed by illness reports of persons who attended “Banquet C” on December 8 and a holiday party on December 6, “Banquet D”. MDH staff interviewed 131 attendees of the four banquets and restaurant patrons. Of these, 64 met the case definition. Cases reported illness onsets between December 8 and December 11. The median incubation period was 33 hours (range, 12 to 62 hours). The median duration of illness was 49.5 hours (range, 10.5 to 140 hours). Stool samples were collected from 8 cases. Seven tested positive for norovirus GII. Nucleic acid sequencing was conducted on five positive samples, and four were identical. A case control study was conducted using controls from Banquet “A”, Banquet “C” and the restaurant patrons. Consumption of the seasonal fruit bowl was statistically associated with illness for Banquet “A” and Banquet “C” attendees. No specific food item was associated with illness among restaurant patrons. Two employees reported illness before the weekend of December 8. Seven employees reported episodes of diarrhea and/or vomiting within 3 to 20 hours of their shifts ending on December 7 or December 8. Four employees tested positive for norovirus GII. Nucleic acid sequencing was conducted on two of the positive samples and the results were identical to each other and to the sequence identified in patron samples. Investigators concluded this was an outbreak of norovirus associated with an event center catered by Caterer X in Brooklyn Park. The source of contamination was one or more infected food workers who had contact with ready-to-eat food items.

  • Outbreak began:
  • December 2013
  • Affected Country:
  • US
  • Affected States/Territories:
  • Minnesota
  • Organism(s):
  • Norovirus
  • Vehicle(s):
  • Fruit, Ill food handler
  • Molecular Results Available:
  • Yes
  • Test Results:
  • GII
  • Location(s):
  • Event Center
  • Brand Name(s):
  • Product Subject to Recall:
  • No
  • Total ill:
  • 64
  • Number ill by Case Definition Known:
  • Yes
  • Number Laboratory Confirmed Cases:
  • 7
  • Number Probable Cases:
  • 57
  • Number Possible Cases:
  • 0
  • Anyone Hospitalized:
  • No
  • Number Hospitalized:
  • 0
  • Any Deaths:
  • No
  • Number Dead:
  • 0
  • Any References:
  • No

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