An Epidemic of Food Poisoning Identify the etiological agent of this outbreak of food poisoning. The etiological agents of this outbreak of food poisoning were the Norwalk virus and scombrotoxin – agents that are most commonly associated with seafood and improperly prepared foods (Wallace, 1994). While these two agents do not often cause death, they are known to cause serious damage to the digestive tract. These agents come to be effective due to water quality, disease surveillance, and seafood harvesting, processing, and marketing. Simply put, more care needs to be put in tending to seafood before selling it to companies and consumers. This also applies to foods that involve water in its preparation, such as corn and potatoes.
2. Was it food infection of intoxication?
The food was infected by the way it was handled, prepared, and shipped to the place where it was served. It was all done during the preparation stages. The proper methods were not taken to make sure that the food was prepared properly before being given to companies and consumers.
3. How did the food get contaminated, and which item was contaminated?
The food that was contaminated was the boiled shrimp and the boiled corn. The shrimp was contaminated when it was set in the hot water for fifteen minutes. When the shrimp was left to set, it was left in the dirty water and then put into the containers for transfer. The corn was contaminated when it was placed back into the boxes in which it was ordered, after it had been shucked and cleaned.
4. How did you arrive to your conclusions? Why did you eliminate the other major causes of food poisoning?
I came to my conclusions by looking at the way that the food was prepared, and how it was tended to recklessly. I was able to eliminate the other major causes of food poisoning by this fact. It was not a matter of the food being tainted or intoxicated, just improperly prepared. While the food went though the processes of being clean, it then was not given the chance to remain so before being served to people. As far as coming to the conclusions of the etiological agents involved, I came to those conclusions as they are the most common agents in cases of seafood poisoning.
Wallace, B. “Seafood-associated disease outbreaks.” 1994. Online. Available http://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S0749379799000379. Retrieved April 21, 2008.
Arnold, T. “Toxicity, Shellfish.” 2007. Online. Available http://www.emedicine.com/emerg/topic528.htm. Retrieved April 22, 2008.