Romaine Lettuce E. coli Scare Appears Over, says Public Health

E. coli lettuce 2

DeLauro pushes CDC director for answers on E. coli outbreak

There's new information on the deadly E. coli outbreak that News 10 has been tracking that could be linked to romaine lettuce. Canada pointed to romaine lettuce as the source of its outbreak. Officials say that since the last illness started nearly a month ago, it's likely that any contaminated leafy greens that are linked to this outbreak are no longer on the market. Across Canada and 15 states in the US, including IL, dozens have been infected and two people have died.

The CDC did whole genome sequencing on the bacteria that caused the outbreak and found they were genetically similar to those implicated in a similar outbreak in Canada.

Seven more people are now included in an outbreak thought to be linked to salad greens contaminated with a particularly serious strain of E. coli bacteria, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Wednesday.

Based on the investigation findings to date, the agency says exposure to romaine lettuce has been identified as the source of the outbreak, but the cause of contamination has not been determined.

Boston Pizza International Inc. also temporarily suspended the sale of all types of romaine lettuce at the pizza joint's locations in Ontario, Quebec and Atlantic Canada as of December 26.

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Public health officials have interviewed 13 people about the foods they ate before they got sick.

Patterns in the geographic distribution of illnesses, the time periods when people got sick, and past outbreaks involving the same germ. In addition, patients said they ate different types and brands of romaine. Sometimes outbreaks end before enough information is gathered to identify the likely source.

Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-NY), a microbiologist, affirmed DeLauro's sentiments in a statement to Consumer Reports: "The delay in CDC or FDA providing updated information to consumers is very disappointing.Timely information is critical to avoid potentially contaminated foods and I call on FDA to take all necessary steps to protect public health".

In Canada, health officials said romaine lettuce is now safe to eat.

If you or a loved one have been sickened with an E. coli O157:H7 infection or HUS, contact our experienced attorneys for help at 1-888-377-8900. Our lawyers represent families of children in personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits against grocery stores, food producers, shippers, restaurants, retailers, and schools. "Two people developed hemolytic uremic syndrome, a type of kidney failure".

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