Experts: Salmonella Outbreak Preventable

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More than 500 million eggs have been recalled in the latest salmonella outbreak, but some health experts believe it could have been prevented.

It has been estimated that more than 1,000 people have been infected so far in the latest outbreak.

For more information on which eggs are being recalled, go to Egg Safety Center recall information

"The fever was pretty bad, lost almost 25 pounds," said Matthew Newell, a salmonella victim.

Medical experts also predict the number of cases will rise, driving many customers to be cautious.

"Once it's cleared up I think I will start using them again, but since I know about it now, it's very concerning," Michelle Parrot, a concerned mother.

While federal investigators have yet to track down the source of the outbreak, the history of the man who supplied both chickens and feed to the two farms that issued the recall has come under sharper scrutiny.

Jack DeCoster, owner of Quality Egg, is no stranger to trouble. Over the years, he has paid millions of dollars in fines for environmental, health and safety violations.

His farms have also been raided for hiring illegal immigrants and sued by women who said they were sexually harassed, raped, or abused at DeCoster's Wright County, Iowa farms.

DeCoster's farms paid more than $1.5 million to settle one employment discrimination lawsuit. As the revelations unfold, critics said more should have been done to protect consumers.

"FDA said that they hadn't even inspected this facility at all, that's not acceptable," said Caroline Smith Dewaal, food safety director of the Center for Science in the Public Interest.

"It often takes FDA days or weeks to trace a food contamination back to its source," said William Hubbard, former FDA Commissioner. "And while that's going on of course, people are consuming the food, getting sick, it's spreading."

Some people aren't waiting for the FDA to complete its investigation.

The salmonella outbreak has sparked lawsuits in several states by people who purchased bad eggs and became ill. They said with the company's tainted history, this outbreak could have been prevented.

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John Jessup

John Jessup

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John Jessup serves as the main news anchor for CBN, a position he assumed after 10 years reporting for the network in Washington, D.C. His work in broadcast news has earned him several awards in reporting, producing, and coordinating elections coverage. Follow John on Twitter @JohnCBNNews and "like" him at