WASHINGTON – Any ground meat and poultry discovered to contain antibiotic-resistant strains ofSalmonellashould be recalled from the marketplace or prevented from entering commerce, urges a regulatory petition filed May 25 by the Center for Science in the Public Interest. CSPI wants the US Department of Agriculture to declare four such
Salmonella strains as “adulterants” under federal law, making products that contain them illegal to sell.

The fourSalmonellastrains covered by the petition,Salmonella Heidelberg,SalmonellaNewport,Salmonella Hadar, andSalmonella Typhimurium, have all been linked to outbreaks, the group said. Testing for antibiotic-resistant Salmonella in ground meat and poultry should also be done, said CSPI.

USDA already issues recalls of products suspected of being contaminated withSalmonella. The group’s petition urges the agency to establish a testing regime for these pathogens in ground meat and poultry in the same way that it has forE. coliO157:H7. USDA declared a particularly dangerous strain ofE. colian adulterant in 1994.