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Report: About 20-30 Percent of Foodborne Illness Victims File Lawsuits

GavelLawBooksMainApproximately 20-30 percent of victims in foodborne illness outbreaks seek legal action against the companies whose products sickened them or their family members, according to an attorney quoted in a May 24 report by the Dallas Morning News.

The newspaper interviewed a number of lawyers who specialize in foodborne illness litigation after a complaint was filed last week against Blue Bell Creameries in connection with the Listeria outbreak linked to its products.

That lawsuit, brought by a 32-year-old man who lived in Houston, claims that he fell into a coma and suffered permanent brain damage in the fall of 2013 after eating Blue Bell ice cream.

In the 2011 Jensen Farms cantaloupe Listeria outbreak, 66 of the 147 victims filed lawsuits against the company. Fifty of those 66 were represented by food safety law firm Marler Clark, which underwrites Food Safety News. A settlement was reached in February of this year.

© Food Safety News
  • Gene

    This essentially represents the philosophical argument underpinning all of food safety. Regardless of where you fall in the argument, more regulation or less it is important for society to decide whether the responsibility lies more with the consumer to cleanse and cook their food or for the producer not to contaminate it in the first place. That argument is partly displaced when it comes to pre-processed food products for which the consumer has no option – Blue Bell ice cream and candy apples e.g.