69 sick from Salmonella linked to tomatoes at Kansas church dinner

Marcus Clem Atchinson of News Press Now reported a month ago that contaminated tomatoes were responsible for nearly 70 confirmed cases of gastrointestinal illness that caused several hospitalizations last month affecting attendees of a church dinner in Highland, Kansas.

Theresa Freed, deputy secretary of public affairs for the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, said investigators tested each dinner item served as part of an Indian taco feast on Aug. 7 at the First United Methodist Presbyterian Church in Highland after the salmonella outbreak became known. They have now ruled out every food item except tomatoes, Freed said.

“Testing of food that was served at the dinner has been completed and all tested negative for salmonella except for a sample of tomatoes that tested positive for the same strain of Salmonella Newport,” Freed said, referencing one of the common strains of the pathogen.

No follow up to date.