July 3, 2015 / 8:54 PM / 3 years ago

Texas law firm sues Foster Farms over Salmonella outbreak

NEW YORK, July 3 (Reuters) - A Texas law firm said on Friday that it had filed suit against Foster Farms LLC, one of the top U.S. chicken producers, over a Salmonella outbreak that ended last year after more than 17 months.

The Houston-based firm of Ron Simon & Associates, along with Gomez Trial Attorneys of San Diego, filed suit against the California-based company on behalf of six outbreak victims.

The lawsuit said that the company sold chicken that it knew was contaminated.

“Based on the company’s initial review, Foster Farms believes this lawsuit is without merit,” the company said in a statement.

“Foster Farms is dedicated to food safety leadership and regularly shares insights with other meat and poultry producers for improvements nationwide,” the statement read.

The Salmonella Heidelberg outbreak, which public health investigators say began on March 1, 2013, ended July 11 last year. It made 634 people sick in 29 states and Puerto Rico, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said last year.

Salmonella is common in chicken feces, feathers and other body parts, and it can cause diarrhea, fever, vomiting and other ailments in humans. (Reporting by Luciana Lopez; Editing by Eric Walsh)

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