The frequency with which food poisoning is caused by the presence of the toxin of the Bacillus botulinus is probably very much greater in this country than has been generally believed, and the fact that the toxin may be formed not only in foods of animal origin but also in certain vegetables and fruits has added much to the importance of recognizing its existence.
A review of the available American medical literature for the past twenty years has shown that there have been at least eleven recorded outbreaks of botulism in the United States during that time, and that a least fifty-two persons have been ill and thirty-two have died from this type of food poisoning.
In a personal investigation1 of unrecorded cases of food poisoning which have occurred on the Pacific Coast during the past six years, I have located eleven more outbreaks of botulism in which twenty-nine
DICKSON EC. BOTULISM: THE DANGER OF POISONING FROM VEGETABLES CANNED BY THE COLD-PACK METHOD. JAMA. 1917;LXIX(12):966–968. doi:10.1001/jama.1917.02590390016006
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