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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
If the poisoning is caused by a chemical agent (e.g. ammonia) the symptoms can begin within minutes. An example of this is the Laraway Elementary School incident in Illinois – with over 150 children sickened from ammonia contaminated chicken tenders in the school lunch. Details can be seen here.
However food poisoning is most commonly caused by organisms such as Norovirus or Salmonella. Onset from this type of food poisoning can range from as little as 1 hour (Staphylococcus aureus) to as long as 28 days (Hepatitis A).
A table explaining onset times and duration for organisms that frequently cause illness can found on the FDA website link found here.