Last updated on April 26th, 2018 at 04:48 pm
The Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a warning to retailers and restaurant operators not to serve or sell any romaine lettuce sold from the growing region of Yuma, Arizona, for fear that it is tainted. Fifty-three people from 16 states had been infected with the strain of E. coli as of Friday, April 20.
The restriction applies to whole heads and hearts, chopped romaine, salads and salad mixes containing romaine.
At this time, no common grower, supplier, distributor or brand has been identified.
As of April 20, 12 cases had been reported in Pennsylvania, seven in New Jersey, two in Connecticut and New York. Besides Pennsylvania, the states with the largest number of reported illnesses were Idaho (10) and Montana (6). The latest state to report illnesses is Alaska. No deaths have been reported, but 31 people have been hospitalized, including five people who have developed a type of kidney failure. The outbreak first was reported March 13.
The CDC suggests that if the location of where the romaine lettuce cannot be determined, the lettuce should be thrown away. Much of the nation’s romaine lettuce is grown in Arizona during the winter season, and the new season growth will shift to California. California lettuce is not believed to be tied to the outbreak.