'Throw It Away'; CDC Warns Against Eating Romaine Lettuce From Salinas Valley

Darnell Taylor
December 7, 2019

Salinas Valley romaine was first implicated last month through illnesses traced to salads packed by a New Jersey food company, which voluntarily recalled about 75,233 pounds of salad products, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service. Public health officials continue their warning against romaine lettuce grown in the Salinas, CA, area or any romaine from an unknown source.

Products that were part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced recall related to this outbreak investigation had a "Best By" of November 1 or earlier, more than one month ago, and should no longer be on the market.

The CDC said its warning included all types of romaine lettuce grown in Salinas such as whole heads of romaine, organic romaine, hearts of romaine, romaine in salad wraps, and packages of precut lettuce and salad mixes which contain romaine, including baby romaine, spring mix, and Caesar salad.

If it isn't labeled with a growing region, don't eat it. Throw it away. Most romaine lettuce products are labeled with a harvest location showing where they were grown. "This includes all use-by dates and brands of romaine lettuce from this region", a CDC release dated December 4 states.

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Here is more information on the update. Some of its types are pathogenic that can cause illness through exposure to contaminated food or water, or contact with animals or other people. Investigators are attempting to identify any factors that could have led to contamination.

Wash and sanitize drawers or shelves in refrigerators where romaine lettuce was stored.

Those sickened range in age from 1 to 89 years old, and 58 of them have been hospitalized after eating the lettuce. We are continuing to collect these records.

Lettuce from Salinas, Calif., may have caused the outbreak, according to the agencies.

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