CDC Data Show Progress in Reducing Some Foodborne Illnesses in 2014

Overall incidence of foodborne illness remains the same, but some illnesses decreased.

Rates of infection from a serious form of E. coli and one of the more common Salmonella serotypes decreased with the baseline period of 2006-2008, while some other less common types of Salmonella increased. This is according to a CDC release where the organization discussed some of the 2014 data regarding foodborne illnesses.

Infection with Shiga-toxin producing E. coli O157 decreased 32 percent when compared with 2006-2008 and 19 percent when compared with the most recent three years. The data come from FoodNet, CDC's active surveillance system that tracks nine common foodborne pathogens in 10 states and monitors trends in foodborne illness in about 15 percent of the U.S. population.

"We're cautiously optimistic that changes in food safety practice are having an impact in decreasing E.coli and we know that without all the food safety work to fight Salmonella that more people would be getting sick with Salmonella than we are seeing now," said Dr. Robert Tauxe, M.D., deputy director of CDC's Division of Foodborne Waterborne and Environmental Diseases. "The increasing use of whole genome sequencing to track foodborne illness cases will also help; however, much more needs to be done to protect people from foodborne illness."

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