Romaine lettuce may be source of E. coli outbreak

KARSTEN MORAN  NYT

KARSTEN MORAN NYT

A multistate E. coli outbreak has food safety experts warning consumers to avoid Romaine lettuce for the time being, as it is said to be the likely cause of the food poisoning.

Fifty-nine people across the USA and Canada have been hit with a strain of E. coli bacteria over the past seven weeks, and in most cases, it's been traced back to the leafy green.

In the United States, 17 illnesses across 13 states have been associated with E coli infections. Leafy greens, including romaine lettuce, were the cause of E coli outbreaks in 2006, 2011, 2012 and 2013. Still, they say, the Canadian finding has proved helpful and both outbreaks appear to have been caused by related strains of the bacteria, suggesting the possibility of a shared source. Generally, lettuce is more vulnerable to bacterial contamination than other produce.

"CDC is still collecting information to determine whether there is a food item in common among sick people, including leafy greens and romaine, " the agency said in its December 28 statement.

Canadian health authorities identified romaine lettuce as the source of the outbreak in Canada and are advising people in the country's eastern provinces to consider eating other types of salad greens until further notice.

United Fresh went on to state that "t$3 his fact makes it very unlikely - even if the outbreak is tied to romaine -that any affected product remains in marketing channels", according to its January 4, 2018 member alert. I would rather operate on the old adage "when in doubt, throw it out", until more information is released. The CDC investigation in the U.S. has yet to conclude. The CDC and FDA are continuing to investigate the details of this outbreak.

Sounds like a good idea to us!

When the doctor asked the patients who got diagnosed with E.coli, that what they have in food a week before.

"Fever, nausea, diarrhea, vomiting and sometimes diarrhea can happen with clear liquids or like watery diarrhea or you can have pussy diarrhea or even a bloody diarrhea and you'll have abdominal cramps with it", Dr. Yu stated. Urgent medical attention is recommended at any sign of the infection, especially if you have eaten romaine recently or are at high risk for foodborne illness. The only way effective way to eradicate E. coli is cooking the produce.

Consumer Reports is now calling on the Food and Drug Administration and CDC to do more to warn the public about the dangers of the outbreak. Check back with us for more updates.

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