FDA: E. Coli outbreak linked to romaine lettuce leaves over 100 ill


SAN RAFAEL, CA – APRIL 23: Romaine lettuce is displayed on a shelf at a supermarket on April 23, 2018 in San Rafael, California. The Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is advising American consumers to throw away and avoid eating Romaine lettuce, especially if its origin is from Yuma, Arizona as investigators try to figure out the cause of an E. coli outbreak that has sickened 53 people in 16 states. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

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SALINAS, Calif. (WJW) — Federal health officials are continuing to warn consumers not to eat romaine lettuce harvested in Salinas, California.

According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) 102 people in 23 states have been infected with e. coli linked to the lettuce.

Officials first alerted citizens of the outbreak on November 22. They warned consumers not to eat romaine lettuce from the Salinas region, which was sold in stores across the nation. They also advised restaurants to not serve the lettuce.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention then reported an additional 35 illnesses connected to the outbreak on November 26. At that point there were 67 cases in 19 states.

The FDA says products that were part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced recall related to this outbreak had a “Best By” of November 1 or earlier and should no longer be on the market.

However, the organization is actively investigating this situation.  Officials are currently working to determine the source of contamination and if any additional products are linked to illness.

Based on available traceback data, the FDA has requested that industry members voluntarily withdraw romaine grown in Salinas from the market and withhold distribution of Salinas romaine for the remainder of the area’s growing season. They say this was the most efficient way to ensure that contaminated romaine was off the market.

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