Romaine Lettuce E. coli O157: H7 Outbreak: Lettuce from Salinas CA Implicated
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced on November 26, 2019, their ongoing investigation on an E. coli O157: H7 outbreak linked to romaine lettuce. The FDA announced that they are working along with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and health authorities to investigate the multistate outbreak of E. coli O157: H7 that has already affected 67 people, 39 of which have required hospitalization. According to the FDA, epidemiologic, laboratory, and traceback evidence indicated that the romaine lettuce linked to the outbreak was harvested from farms in Salinas, California.
The CDC has reported an increase in the number of cases linked to the E. coli O157: H7 outbreak as of November 14, 2019. The first few cases linked to the multistate outbreak were reported to the CDC on September 24, 2019, at that time the cause of the outbreak had yet to be identified but it was believed that romaine lettuce was the source of the illnesses. The cases linked to the outbreak have been reported from 19 different states: AZ (3), CA (4), CO (1), ID (3), IL (1), MD (4), MI (1), MN (3), MT (1), NE (1), NJ (1), NM (2), OH (12), OR (1), PA (3), TX (2), VA (2), WA (1), and WI (21).
The Maryland Department of Health announced that in an unopened package of Ready Pac Bistro® Chicken Caesar Salad, which they received from one of the people affected by the outbreak, the romaine lettuce tested positive for E. coli O157: H7. A recall was issued on several Missa Bay, LLC salad products on November 21, 2019, by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS). The recall was issued after it was discovered that some of the romaine lettuce which was used as an ingredient for the salads may have been contaminated with E. coli O157: H7.
The FDA has advised all consumers to stay vigilant and avoid eating any romaine lettuce that indicates that it was grown in Salinas, even if it doesn’t specify any other location. All consumers, restaurants, and retailers have been warned to avoid using lettuce products which do not indicate of where it was grown. Suppliers have been urged to refrain from selling and shipping lettuce products from Salinas, CA. According to the FDA, no other lettuce products have been linked to the outbreak at this time.
Ron Simon, a national E. coli Lawyer, stated “The most commonly identified STEC in North America is E. coli O157: H7. When you hear news reports about outbreaks of E. coli infections, they are usually referring to E. coli O157. Unfortunately, a very small amount of E. coli in one’s system can be deadly, and the infectious dose of E. coli has been reported to be approximately 100 bacteria.”
For more information on the E. coli outbreak linked to romaine lettuce, to speak to an E. coli Lawyer, or to inquire about an E. coli lawsuit, call 1-888-335-4901.