About 30 people are part of a Salmonella outbreak in the Netherlands linked to eggs from Spain.

The Dutch Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority (NVWA) last month advised people not to eat eggs stamped with the code 3-ES-4624944A because of Salmonella contamination.

The agency added it was important to wash hands after touching them as the Salmonella can be found on the outside of the eggs.

They were supplied to neighborhood supermarkets, market stalls and catering establishments that may have further processed them into various dishes. They are not thought to have been sold at large supermarket chains in the country.

Salmonellosis is not a notifiable infection in the Netherlands. There were an estimated 27,440 patients with acute gastroenteritis due to salmonellosis in 2017.

First illnesses this past year
Thirty patients have been reported with an identical Salmonella Enteritidis type based on whole genome sequencing, some of which fell ill last year.

At least five patients are known to have eaten eggs from the batch the NVWA issued a warning about, according to the Dutch National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM).

Harald Wychgel, a RIVM spokesman, said because these studies ask people what they have eaten in recent weeks, it is not expected consumption of eggs can be confirmed for all patients.

“The outbreak has been going on since 2018 with a number of patients that is insufficient to initiate source detection. RIVM linked a small cluster of patients to a batch of eggs that were withdrawn from the market at the end of August,” he told Food Safety News.

“Although there has been a recall, it may still be the case that patients will be found because they may still have products at home. The eggs in question have been traced by the NVWA and are withdrawn from the market.”

Information from the Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF) shows the eggs were also distributed to Belgium.

Symptoms of Salmonella infection can include diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and fever within 12 to 72 hours after eating contaminated food.

Otherwise healthy adults are usually sick for four to seven days. Older adults, children, pregnant women and people with weakened immune systems, such as cancer patients, are more likely to develop a severe illness and serious, sometimes life-threatening conditions.

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