Food Poisoning Suspected After More Than 100 People Fall Ill During Food Safety Summit

(frankieleon)

(frankieleon)

While some of our nation’s brightest food minds were gathered at a Food Safety Summit in Maryland earlier this month, the very thing they came together to discuss seems to have wreaked havoc on more than 100 people attending. In what can only be a prank from the food gods, it appears food poisoning is one of the suspected culprits, officials say.

The Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene said that most of those who fell ill have complained of diarrhea, reports the Associated Press, after hearing back from about 400 of the 1,300 attendees. No one has been hospitalized.

It’s still unclear what happened or how the attendees were exposed to the illness over the course of two days earlier this month, when the Baltimore Convention Center hosted representatives the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and food companies like McDonald’s Corp, Tyson Foods Inc and ConAgra Foods Inc.

The illness might’ve spread from person to person, or could’ve been transmitted through the food served during the conference. The food service company was recently inspected in February with no glaring citations, other than a violation notice for condensation dripping from an ice machine.

“We are working on evaluating possible exposures and doing testing at the Maryland state public health laboratory to attempt to identify an agent,” the health department said in the statement.

Food poisoning fells more than 100 at Maryland food safety summit [Associated Press]