An emerging outbreak of Salmonella Typhimurium has expanded to five states with 16 people infected with the outbreak strain, the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta said Friday. USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS)– just 24 hours earlier– announced the existence of the outbreak with seven illnesses in two states, Michigan and Arizona. CDC said the states and the number of persons infected in the outbreak now includes: Arizona (1), Illinois (2), Iowa (1), Michigan (9), and Wisconsin (3). No deaths have been reported, but 53 percent of the ill persons have required hospitalization. Local, state, and federal public health officials and regulatory agencies are involved in a collaborative investigation that has concluded ground beef produced by Jouni Meats Inc. and Gab Halal Foods, both in Michigan, are the likely sources of the pathogen. As FSIS reported earlier, seven people in Michigan reported eating a raw ground beef dish at the same Macomb County restaurant before becoming ill. The restaurant acquired the raw beef from the two retailers and served the raw beef to customers. “Initial investigations focused on six ill persons in Michigan and one ill person in Arizona who reported eating at the same restaurant before their illness began. All seven of these ill persons reported eating raw ground beef kibbeh (a dish typically made of finely ground red meat, usually beef, minced onions, and bulghur wheat) at this restaurant before becoming ill. Investigations are ongoing to determine if the additional nine ill persons may be linked to the recalled products,” CDC said in a statement released on its website. Jouni Meats has recalled about 500 pounds of ground beef products and Gab Halal Foods has recalled about 550 pounds of ground beef products. Public health officials including the CDC urge consumers to avoid eating raw or undercooked ground beef. CDC recommends that consumers do not eat recalled ground beef products and that they dispose of any remaining recalled product in their home or return the product to the place of purchase. The warning is especially important for children under the age of 5 years, older adults, and people with weakened immune systems because these people are at a higher risk for serious illness. Consumers should check their freezers for recalled products and not eat them.