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US: CDC study attempts to assess outbreak risk from organic food

Photo: Zoesque / Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Food Safety News: A newly published study of outbreaks linked to organic food concludes that while more data are needed to assess whether the risk is greater than for conventionally grown food, consumers should practice safe food handling in any case to avoid being sickened.

Using CDC’s Foodborne Disease Outbreak Surveillance System, researchers identified 18 outbreaks between 1992 and 2014 that were reportedly caused by organic food products. These outbreaks were linked to 779 illnesses, 258 hospitalizations and three deaths. Eight of the 18 outbreaks were attributed to produce items.