New Food Poisoning Outbreak Prompts CDC Warning Not To Eat Romaine Lettuce

Laverne Higgins
November 20, 2018

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned US consumers on Tuesday to not eat romaine lettuce, as it may be contaminated with E. coli.

The new warning includes all kinds of romaine lettuce, including whole heads, hearts, bags and boxes of pre-cut romaine, as well as salad mixes containing romaine.

If you don't know whether the lettuce is romaine or whether a salad mix contains romaine lettuce, the CDC advises discarding it. Drawers and shelves where romaine lettuce was stored should also be washed and sanitized.

If you were planning to make a salad for Thanksgiving, it's probably best you steer clear of romaine lettuce.

People of all ages are at risk of becoming infected with Shiga toxin-producing E. coli, according to the US Food and Drug Administration, which is also investigating the outbreak. Thirteen of those people were hospitalized, including one who suffered kidney failure.

No deaths have been reported, but 13 of the people who became sick in the USA were hospitalized.

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The Public Health Agency of Canada has identified an additional 18 people who have become sick with the same strain of of E. coli in Ontario and Quebec.

FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb says the agency didn't have enough information to request suppliers issue a recall, but he said supermarkets and restaurants should withdraw romaine products until the contamination can be identified.

Illnesses started in October. Follow these five steps to clean your refrigerator. "This takes an average of two to three weeks", the CDC's alert said.

The advisory is not linked to another multistate outbreak of the same bacteria in romaine lettuce, which sickened at least 53 people across 16 states this past spring.

If you have symptoms of an E. coli infection, CDC officials say you should write down what you ate before you got sick and contact your healthcare provider.

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