August 5, 2011
On August 1, 2011, CDC announced the results of a multistate outbreak investigation of human Salmonella Heidelberg infections. The National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System (NARMS) played a pivotal role in helping to identify ground turkey as a likely source of infection.
NARMS conducts ongoing monitoring of retail meats for the presence of antibiotic resistant foodborne bacteria such as Salmonella. The genetic "fingerprints" of these strains are submitted to CDC’s PulseNet system. A strain highly similar to the outbreak strain was detected by NARMS in ground turkey from two states. This information led CDC to emphasize ground turkey as a possible source in their investigation, ultimately leading to the factory where the meat was processed. This situation highlights how public health systems working closely together and sharing information can enhance outbreak detection and response, limiting the burden of outbreaks on the public.
Information on NARMS, the Salmonella Heidelberg investigation and the subsequent recall of ground turkey