New Mexico Salmonella food poisoning first linked to uncooked tomatoes has spread to 16 states, federal health officials said Saturday in Albuquerque, N.M.
Investigations by the Texas and New Mexico Departments of Health and the U.S. Indian Health Service have tied 56 cases in Texas and 55 in New Mexico to raw, uncooked, tomatoes.
"We're seeing a steady increase," Deborah Busemeyer, New Mexico Department of Health communications director, said Saturday.
An additional 50 people have been sickened by the same Salmonella "Saintpaul" infection in Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Oklahoma, Oregon, Utah, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin, the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported.
Investigators are trying to determine if raw tomatoes also are responsible for the illnesses in those states, said Arleen Porcell, a CDC spokeswoman.
The source of the tomatoes responsible for the illnesses has not been pinpointed, but health officials in Texas and New Mexico said none of them was grown in those two states.