Metro-East News

Source of salmonella outbreak at chili cook-off still unknown

The St. Clair County Health Department, in an update to the public on Tuesday, said that “no specific food source” has been identified as the cause of a salmonella outbreak that was linked to the Belleville Chili Cook-off.

The county health department had announced on Nov. 3 that it was looking into cases of salmonella with the Illinois Department of Public Health when it learned of less than a dozen cases that were reported after the Belleville Chili Cook-off. The event was held Oct. 7-8 in downtown Belleville, and organized by the Greater Belleville Chamber of Commerce.

In a news release, the health department said subsequent lab testing of leftover chili and individuals “did not reveal related salmonella bacteria.”

After it notified the public of the outbreak, the health department had asked event-goers who ate chili to complete a survey on its website. The health department said on Tuesday that it received more than 100 completed surveys in response. The survey has since been discontinued and removed from the county’s website.

For more information or to report a possible case of salmonella, the health department has asked the public to call 618-233-6175, extension 4434.