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12 infected in multi-state E. coli outbreak across 6 states – romaine lettuce suspected source

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) officials announced they are investigating a multi-state outbreak of illnesses caused by E. coli O157:H7 in and initial evidence indicates romaine lettuce from Tanimura & Antle, a grower with farms in multiple states, is a suspected source of the outbreak.

The CDC announced yesterday that 12 people from 6 states have been infected with the outbreak strain of E. coli and 5 of those have been hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.

State# of Ill People
Source: CDC (November 10, 2020)

On November 6th, Tanimura & Antle recalled packaged single-head romaine lettuce after officials in Michigan identified E. coli 0157:H7 in it during routine sample testing. A total of 3,396 cartons of potentially affected product were shipped to retailers and distributors in AK, OR, CA, TX, AR, OK, IN, NE, MO, TN, WI, NM, SC, WA, NC, OH, VA, MA, PR and IL. Packages contain a single head of romaine lettuce with the UPC number 0-27918-20314-9 and labeled with a “packed on” date of 10/15/2020 or 10/16/2020 are being recalled.

Product photo. Source: US Food and Drug Administration

It is unlikely that this product remains at retail establishments due to the shelf life of lettuce and the number of days that have passed according to the recall notice. Consumers are advised to not consume and dispose of any of the recalled product.

It was a year ago this month that a similar E. coli outbreak occurred with 40 cases reported across 16 states, including Washington. Romaine lettuce harvested within the Salinas, California region was implicated in that outbreak.

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