CDC issues new romaine lettuce warning

Contaminated Romaine Lettuce Linked to a Santa Maria Farm title

Contaminated Romaine Lettuce Linked to a Santa Maria Farm title

USA health officials have traced a food poisoning outbreak from romaine lettuce to at least one farm in Central California.

13, 59 people in 15 states had become ill during this E. coli outbreak, the FDA said, with the last reported illness beginning almost a month earlier on November 16. Family Farms in Santa Maria tested positive for E. coli O157:H7 and was a almost identical genetic match to the strain found in people who have fallen ill, Williams said.

The U.S. government also narrowed the source of the outbreak to three California counties: Santa Barbara, Monterey and San Benito.

If the romaine lettuce is not labeled, health officials said, do not buy, serve, sell, or eat it. Farms said he could not comment on the government announcement. No deaths linked to the outbreak has been reported. Some cases can be life-threatening, causing kidney failure and seizures.

Illnesses have been reported in 15 states: California, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maryland, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Wisconsin. The FDA told consumers to avoid romaine lettuce just before U.S. Thanksgiving.

FDA officials said they are continuing to investigate how the E. coli came to be in the sediment of the irrigation pond.

Officials Pinpoint 1 Source of Contaminated Romaine, But Investigation Remains 'Active'

But the contaminated water at that farm does not fully explain all of the illnesses so far, nor do the agencies know how the reservoir became contaminated with the bacteria.

"What we are seeing is there are multiple distributors and multiple processors and multiple farms that show up in the various legs of that traceback and they don't all lead back specifically to this farm", said Dr. Stephen Ostroff, Senior Advisor to the FDA commissioner.

Numerous affected individuals ate more than one meal of romaine, across a number of different restaurants, said the CDC, further complicating the trace-back investigation.

A man who answered the phone at Adam Bros. Family Farms is no longer available for sale, according to the release.

Symptoms of illness linked to E. coli include intense stomach cramps, vomiting and potentially bloody diarrhea, and the CDC does not recommend antibiotics to treat infections from this strain. Family Farms. Whole genome sequencing showed that the strain found in the reservoir was "closely related genetically to the E. coli. isolated from ill people".

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