June 16, 2024

Canada Issues Temporary Requirements for US Romaine

Canada issues temporary requirements for romaine lettuce imported from the United States after several E. coli O157:H7 outbreaks were linked to that food. The lettuce is imported from the California Salinas Valley counties of Santa Cruz, Santa Clara, San Benito, and Monterey. Safe Food For Canadians (SFC) license conditions have been implemented for the romaine lettuce originating from the United States between September 28 and December 20, 2023. That includes romaine lettuce and salad mixes containing romaine. Importers must declare that the product does not originate from those areas, or submit an attestation form and Certificates of Analysis for each shipment to demonstrate that the lettuce does not contain detectable levels of E. coli O157:H7. These conditions are in addition … [Read more...]

Consumer Reports Issues Advice to Buy Safer Lettuce

Consumers Reports has issued advice telling consumers how to buy safer lettuce in the wake of serious E. coli and Listeria monocytogenes outbreaks. Those outbreaks happen every year: earlier this year a Listeria outbreak was linked to Revolution Farms lettuce blends. And in fact, in 2018 Consumers Reports advised people to avoid romaine lettuce altogether until the FDA had a handle on that year's outbreaks. While it isn't possible to ensure that all lettuce or leafy greens you buy are perfectly safe, there are some things you can do to reduce your risk of illness. There were 78 foodborne illness outbreaks linked to leafy greens between 2014 and 2021 that sickened hundreds of people and hospitalized many. Some of the outbreaks were solved and some weren't. The lettuce can become … [Read more...]

Romaine Lettuce Recalled For Deer Feces Contamination

Romaine lettuce is being recalled because it may be contaminated with deer feces, according to a notice posted on the FDA's Enforcement page.  Deer fees can be contaminated with Salmonella, Listeria monocytogenes, Cryptosporidium, Giardia, and other pathogens. Because this recall is not on the regular recall page, there is no mention whether there are any illnesses reported to the company. The recalling firm is G.O. Corporation of Minneapolis, Minnesota. The recalled products are romaine lettuce and two salad blends. The recalled products are: Romaine lettuce in these configurations: 1. Medium, Produce Code 720832, six 2 pound per shipping case. 2. Medium, Produce Code 720840, ten 2 pound per shipping case. 3. 1.5 X Random, Produce Code 720625, four 2.5 pound bags per … [Read more...]

2021 Chipotle and Panera Romaine E. coli Outbreak

In 2021, health departments in Washington and Minnesota did something that doesn't happen very often. They solved an E. coli outbreak linked to leafy greens. "It is rare to be able to identify the outbreak vehicle for commercially distributed food like romaine lettuce (much less link back to a farm source) with only four laboratory-confirmed cases who consumed the romaine lettuce at four different restaurant locations in two states," Doug Schultz, an information officer at the Minnesota Department of Health told Food Poisoning Bulletin. The outbreak was never announced because, by the time investigators identified the specific grower, there was no ongoing risk to the public, he said. Stream of Unsolved Outbreaks Leafy greens recently overtook ground beef to become the leading … [Read more...]

Revolution Farms Lettuces Linked to Listeria Outbreak

Revolution Farms lettuces linked to Listeria outbreak, according to the FDA, and all of its lettuces and salad kits are recalled. There is no information from the CDC or FDA yet on this outbreak. The original recall was posted on April 5, 2023. The recalling firm is Revolution Farms of Caledonia, Michigan. The expansion now includes all products sold under the Revolution Farms brand name. These products were sold in these stores: SpartanNash stores, Meijer stores, Bridge St. Market, Kingma’s Market, Fresh Thyme Market Grand Rapids, Fresh Thyme Market Kalamazoo, Horrocks Market Grand Rapids, Doorganics, Cherry Capital Foods, Gordon Food Service, Sysco, Van Eerden Foodservice, Vine Line Produce, Luna restaurant, Russ’ Commissary, and Pearson Foods Corporation in these states: … [Read more...]

Consumer Reports Lists 10 Risky Recalled Foods From 2017-2022

Consumer Reports lists 10 risky recalled foods from 2017 to 2022 that you should know about. These foods were recalled because of bacterial contamination and many were linked to foodborne illness outbreaks. The 10 risky recalled foods that are listed in rank order include: Leafy Greens. These types of vegetables were linked to 50 outbreaks and recalls. There were 614 illnesses and 11 deaths as a result of E. coli and Listeria monocytogenes bacterial contamination on these products, including the deadly Listeria monocytogenes outbreak linked to Fresh Express packaged salads that sickened and hospitalized 10 people in 10 states, and the Wendy's E. coli romaine outbreak that sickened at least 109 people in six states. Contaminated water used to irritate crops is one source of these … [Read more...]

Persistent Strain of E. coli O157:H7 in United States, Says CDC

The CDC says that there is a persistent strain of E. coli O157:H7 in the United States that has caused illnesses and outbreaks. Illnesses caused by this strain, REPEXH01, occur year round but are less common in the winter. This strain has sickened people through contaminated food and contaminated recreational water. Persistent is a term used by the CDC to describe strains that have caused illnesses for years. Even though the number of illnesses may change over time, they continue to cause sickness. And these strains are sometimes linked to more than one course, making them more difficult to control. The strain is "relatively" diverse genetically, within 21 allele differences of one another. That is more diverse than pathogens that cause typical multistep foodborne illnesses … [Read more...]

Alleged Wendy’s E. coli Outbreak Was Number One in 2022

The alleged Wendy's E. coli outbreak was the number one outbreak of 2022, with at least 109 people sick in six states, and 52 patients hospitalized. The CDC says that they were unable to confirm a food source, but more than 80% of patients who were interviewed by public health officials said they ate at a Wendy's restaurant, choosing burgers and sandwiches made with romaine lettuce, before they got sick. The case count by state was: Indiana (11), Kentucky (2), Michigan (67), New York (1), Ohio (24), and Pennsylvania (4). The Wendy's restaurants where sick people ate were in Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, New Jersey, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. The patient age range was from 1 to 94 years. Illness onset dates ranged from July 26, 2022 to August 17, 2022. Fifty-two people were … [Read more...]

Will There Be More Romaine Lettuce E. coli Outbreaks This Year?

This is the time of year that we typically start seeing E. coli outbreaks linked to romaine lettuce, as the harvest patters shift. Will there be more romaine lettuce E. coli outbreaks this year? Studies have shown that fall harvested romaine is more likely to case E. coli outbreaks.  The problem may be that the pathogen survives better on cold stored packaged romaine lettuce. In November, harvest shifts to the Yuma, Arizona region and the area of California near the Imperial Valley. And the issue with this type of lettuce is its shape and the way it's grown. The lettuce is grown very close to the ground. And the cup shape holds water, which lets any pathogens in that water have easy access to the leaves. The bacteria can get inside the leaves, and it can also burrow into the … [Read more...]

Alleged Wendy’s E. coli O157:H7 Outbreak Ends With 109 Sick

The alleged Wendy's E. coli O157:H7 outbreak has ended with 109 sick and 52 hospitalized, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The CDC states that officials were unable to confirm the food source, but 83% of patients interviewed said they ate at a Wendy's fast food restaurant before they got sick. And many of those patients said they ate burgers and sandwiches made with romaine lettuce. The case count by state is: Indiana (11), Kentucky (2), Michigan (67), New York (1), Ohio (24), and Pennsylvania (4). That's an increase of 12 more patients since the  last update on September 1, 2022. The actual number of people sickened in this outbreak is likely higher than this number, and the outbreak may not be limited to the states listed. The patient age range … [Read more...]

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