Causes of food poisoning, or foodborne illness, vary including biological and chemical origins. When we consume foods or beverages somehow contaminated, the “food poisoning” is passed to our systems.

Almost everyone has experienced some level of mild poisoning as a result of eating some leftover that was just a bit too old. Mostly, these experiences leave us with a heavy case of diarrhea and maybe an upset stomach.

However, when the poisoning is contracted at a public place like a restaurant or from a packaged food, it cannot be tolerated. Restaurants, caterers and packed food manufacturers must be held responsible when something they serve is contaminated.

If you believe you have eaten contaminated food served by a professional, contact an experienced food poisoning attorney to discuss your case.

Common Forms of Food Poisoning


This is the most common cause of food poisoning. But because the test is not readily available at every lab, norovirus isn’t diagnosed often.

This type of virus is typically spread by infected humans handling food. When proper hand washing protocol isn’t followed or surfaces are not continually cleaned by kitchen staff, the virus can be passed.

The virus can also be contracted by eating oysters contaminated with sewage before harvesting.

Norovirus results in acute gastrointestinal illness, which produces more vomiting than diarrhea and lasts about 3 days. Although norovirus accounts for nearly five times as many number of illnesses each year than salmonella, almost twice the number of people die each year from contracting salmonella.


This type of bacteria is common in the intestines of mammals, reptiles and birds, and it can also be spread by humans after contraction.

Salmonella poisoning results in abdominal cramps, diarrhea and fever. It can also invade the bloodstream of people with an already weakened immune system, causing serious and even fatal infections.

Proving Food Poisoning Claims

When you contract food poisoning from a caterer or restaurant or packaged food, you have basically been given a defective product. Eating or drinking this defective product then produced an illness. So any legal claim filed falls under the defective product codes.

But first, you must be able to establish 2 things as fact, which can be tricky.

  1. You somehow have to prove that the food was contaminated, and confirmed so by a health official. That point might be easy if you took the food to go, and unable to finish it, refrigerated a portion. If you contracted the food poisoning outside of your home, it is difficult to prove-except in cases where others also became ill.
  2. You must also establish that the contaminated food lead directly to your illness. You can easily confirm the virus was caused by the food with a simple stool sample test to compare to the microbes found in the contaminated food you ate.

While the second requirement is relatively straight forward, proving the food served to you was contaminated is sometimes more involved and difficult.

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