"CLARION, Iowa — The scrambled eggs, as always, were hissing in a skillet on a recent morning at a coffee shop here, in an egg-producing county that has suddenly found itself at the center of the nation's egg recall over salmonella. But the conversation at the weekly gathering of local ladies turned uncharacteristically tense.
One woman suggested that the company at the focus of the recall of hundreds of millions of eggs, with huge facilities here, had done more harm than good locally. A second resident jumped in to defend the operation and the DeCoster family, which runs it, sternly announcing that any troubles ought not be discussed aloud.
Federal authorities announced Thursday that they had found samples of salmonella matching the strain of the recent outbreak in the feed and barns of Wright County Egg, the DeCosters' operation.
The authorities said nearly 1,500 illnesses since May might be tied to tainted eggs, making this the largest outbreak associated with this type of bacteria, Salmonella enteritidis, since the federal government began closely tracking foodborne disease in 1973."