April 13, 2018

FDA tracking E. coli outbreak linked to chopped romaine

The FDA and the Centers for Disease Control, along with state and local health officials, are investigating an outbreak of Shiga toxin-producing E. coli O157:H7 infections. Currently there are 35 identified cases in 11 states.

Current cases by state

  • Connecticut (2)
  • Idaho (8)
  • Illinois (1)
  • Michigan (1)
  • Missouri (1)
  • New Jersey (7)
  • New York (2)
  • Ohio (2)
  • Pennsylvania (9)
  • Virginia (1)
  • Washington (1)

The 35 illnesses occurred in the time period of March 22, 2018 to March 31, 2018 according to the agencies. The current outbreak is not related to another recent multistate outbreak of E. coli O157:H7 infections linked to leafy greens. People in the previous outbreak were infected with a different DNA fingerprint of E. coli O157:H7 bacteria.

Preliminary information collected by FDA’s Coordinated Outbreak Response and Evaluation (CORE) network, in conjunction with federal, state and local partners, indicates that the prepared chopped romaine lettuce that ill people ate was likely grown or originated from the winter growing areas in Yuma, Arizona. This region generally supplies romaine to the U.S. during November-March each year. No specific grower, supplier, distributor or brand has been identified at this time.

The FDA currently does not have information to indicate that whole-head romaine lettuce or hearts of romaine have contributed to this outbreak. CORE is continuing to work with federal, state and local partners to determine what people ate before they became ill, where they bought and consumed it, and to identify the distribution chain of these foods, all with the goal of identifying any common food or points in the distribution chain where the food might have become contaminated.







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1 day ago  ·