At Least For Now, Cyclospora Is No Longer No. 1

We thought it worth noting here that record no longer stands as its been bested by Mexican hot peppers that have now made almost 1,300 ill with Salmonella Saintpaul in 43 U.S. states, the District of Columbia and Canada.

The 1997-98 Cyclospora outbreak have been subject to much academic research and medical reviews.   Just as tomatoes were first fingered in the Salmonella Saintpaul outbreak, strawberries were initially thought responsible for the Cyclospora outbreak.

WebMD has a paper on its website that details what happened.   There were actually several years where Guatemalan raspberries were a problem, and it took some doing to eradicate it. WebMD says:

The year 2000 was the fifth year since 1995 (i.e., 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, and 2000) that outbreaks of cyclosporiasis occurred in the spring in the United States or Canada that definitely or probably were associated with Guatemalan raspberries.[7] However, the recent outbreaks have been much smaller than the multistate outbreaks in 1996 and 1997.[7] After the outbreaks in 1996 and 1997,[2,3]

FDA began working with the Guatemalan government and berry industry to improve farming and exporting practices for raspberries. Only farms that meet certain standards–including water, sanitation, and worker hygiene issues–have been allowed to export fresh raspberries to the United States during the “spring season” (March through August). The standards are reviewed and updated yearly. During the spring of 2000, five Guatemalan farms were allowed to export to the United States. After the outbreaks in Pennsylvania and Georgia, FDA did not allow the farm that was in common to the events to export raspberries to the United States during the spring of 2001. No U.S. outbreaks of cyclosporiasis associated with Guatemalan raspberries were identified that spring. During the spring of 2002, only three farms, which have never been implicated in outbreaks of cyclosporiasis, were allowed to export raspberries to the United States.

You can find the rest with the footnotes and such here.