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Fareway grocery stores have voluntarily stopped selling a chicken salad product after it was linked to multiple cases of salmonella illness across Iowa.

In a consumer advisory Tuesday, the Iowa Department of Public Health and Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals announced that preliminary test results from the State Hygienic Laboratory at the University of Iowa indicate the presence of salmonella in the chicken salad.

The item, produced and packaged by a third party for Fareway, was removed from Fareway's shelves Friday after the grocer was contacted by the inspections department.

"The company has been very cooperative and is working with IDPH and DIA in the investigation of the reported illnesses,” said DIA Food and Consumer Safety Bureau Chief Steven Mandernach.

Salmonella infection is a common bacterial disease that can cause illness and rarely, it can be severe. Symptoms, which usually appear within 12 to 36 hours after ingesting the bacteria, include: diarrhea, headache, fever, nausea, abdominal pain, dehydration, vomiting, muscle pains and bloody stools. Symptoms can last four to seven days.

Customers who purchased the product should throw it out and not return it to the store.

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