FDA: California Could Be Source Of Romaine Lettuce Tainted With E. coli

Nearly 1/3 of People Sickened in Outbreak Linked to Romaine Lettuce Live in L.A. County

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say the lettuce appears to come from somewhere in California.

The Food and Drug Administration has issued an update on the E. coli outbreak tied to romaine lettuce.

32 people in 11 states have become ill and 13 had to be hospitalized. Similarly, the Public Health Agency of Canada is also coordinating with United States authorities as they are also experiencing a similar outbreak.

"The Government of Canada advises residents in provinces affected by the outbreak to avoid eating romaine lettuce - including salad mixes containing romaine lettuce - until more is known about the outbreak and the cause of contamination".

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has not issued a recall on romaine lettuce and it is still investigating the exact source of the outbreak. Further, the agency is also conducting laboratory analysis of romaine lettuce samples that could potentially be linked to the outbreak.

Friday, the Commissioner of the U.S. FDA, Scott Gottlieb, tweeted that the location of the lettuce was determined by examining growing and harvesting patterns and that the next step was to remove the potentially contaminated lettuce from the market.

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Grocery stores have stopped selling romaine lettuce, and many restaurants are no longer serving Caesar salads. O157 is considered to be more likely than other strains of E. coli to cause severe illnesses, particularly in adults aged 60 or older, children under the age of 5 and pregnant women. The majority of cases (56%) are female.

There have been 22 reported E-coli outbreaks in Canada since Wednesday, with the product as a possible factor.

The previous case was reported to authorities on October 26. If you plan to eat romaine lettuce this holiday season or just have some lying around the house, then throw it away!

The group representing East Coast restaurants says most restaurants are being cautious.

People infected with E. coli can have a wide range of symptoms.

"They're concerned they may get sick, especially this time of year so close to the holidays". There is no real treatment for E. coli infections, other than monitoring the illness, providing comfort, and preventing dehydration through proper hydration and nutrition. However, some people can develop serious or life-threatening complications.