Veggie-linked cyclospora illnesses grow in Minnesota, Wisconsin

The Minnesota Department of Health is investigating another outbreak of Cyclospora – a parasite found on imported fresh produce. The latest outbreak has sickened 17 people to date. Those affected ate at the Sonora Grill on East Lake Street in Minneapolis between May 18 and May 20.

Minnesota health officials are asking anyone who ate at the restaurant during that time to contact them regardless of whether or not they became ill.

“Even if you have not been sick, your information can help us identify what may have caused these illnesses and prevent future illnesses,” Trisha Robinson, an epidemiologist supervisor with MDH, said in a statement. “If you ate at Sonora Grill during that weekend of May 18-20, please contact the Minnesota Department of Health Waterborne Diseases Unit at 651-201-4891.”

The latest outbreak brings the total number of Minnesotans sickened by Cyclospora to at least three dozen.

The earlier outbreak, where about 20 people became ill, involved Del Monte vegetable trays purchased at Kwik Trip gas stations. A lawsuit has been filed in connection with that outbreak, which includes the following products:

  • Del Monte Vegetable Tray, containing broccoli, cauliflower, carrots and dill dip, 6 oz.
  • Del Monte Vegetable Tray, containing broccoli, cauliflower, carrots and dill dip, 12 oz.

Health officials say both the Sonora Grill and Kwik Trip are cooperating with the investigation.

“We do not have any indication at this time that the two outbreaks are related,” Robinson said. “Besides these outbreak cases, there are other cases of cyclosporiasis that do not appear to be related to either of these outbreaks, which is not unexpected for this time of year. We typically see increases in Cyclospora infections from May through August.”

Anyone experiencing symptoms of cyclosporiasis is encouraged to contact their health care provider.