Do not eat romaine lettuce — Warning from CDC

Do not eat romaine lettuce — Warning from CDC

The Consumer Reports statement said its advisory is its second warning for romaine since January and that its advice goes beyond the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advice for the public to buy or order only bagged romaine lettuce that didn't originate from the Yuma growing area.

Symptoms usually vary from person to person. Most will get better within a week, but the symptoms can last longer and be severe. Most people recover in five to seven days. However, illnesses can start anywhere from 1 to 10 days after exposure.

Consumers anywhere in the USA who have store-bought chopped romaine lettuce, including salads and salad mixes, should not eat it and throw it away - even if you have eaten some of it already. "If you do not know if the lettuce is romaine, do not eat it and throw it away", the CDC said.

That's the update in which the CDC advised consumers to throw out store-bought chopped romaine lettuce, or lettuce they think might be romaine lettuce, and not to eat romaine in restaurants unless it can be verified that it doesn't come from the Yuma, Arizona, region.

The CDC, however, has said that "no grower, supplier, distributor, or brand has been identified" as the source at this time.

In another development, a group of five produce grower trade groups issued a joint statement on April 14 that said its members are cooperating with government investigators and are working closely to identify the source of the outbreak tied to chopped romaine from the Yuma, Ariz., growing area, adding that almost all romaine being harvested and shipped now is from California areas not implicated in the outbreak.

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Restaurants and retailers should ask their suppliers about the source of their chopped romaine lettuce. Sixty-nine percent of ill people are female. Illnesses started on dates ranging from March 22, 2018 to March 31, 2018. And by the end of her two weeks in the hospital, she had undergone three blood transfusions.

However, Consumer Reports is advising against consumers purchasing any romaine lettuce regardless of where it's grown while the outbreak is ongoing, including unbagged romaine or hearts of romaine. Most of those people ate salad at a restaurant; romaine lettuce was the common ingredient.

In addition, the agency recommends asking grocery stores and restaurants to confirm their chopped romaine is not from Yuma. The Produce Marketing Association, Arizona Leafy Greens Marketing Agreement, United Fresh and Western Growers released a statement on the outbreak, and reassured consumers that almost all romaine lettuce now being harvested and shipped throughout the U.S.is from the California growing areas. If you can not confirm where it was grown, do not eat it, according to the agency. The Daily Meal has reached out to Chipotle and Just Salad to inquire whether they will continue to use and serve romaine lettuce in their meals.

Consumers who have symptoms of STEC infection should contact their health care provider to report their symptoms and receive care. Three of those patients have a type of kidney failure called hemolytic uremic syndrome, which is often associated with the O157:H7 E.coli strain.

However, the Warren County Health Department had confirmed that Panera Bread restaurants were part of a "regional investigation" into the E. coli outbreak, but that other chains could also be involved. People in the previous outbreak were infected with a different DNA fingerprint of E. coli O157:H7 bacteria.

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