Lettuce Recall Grows Over E. Coli Fears

According to Nation’s Restaurant News, “Vaughan Foods is voluntarily recalling romaine products for foodservice with “use by” dates of May 9 and May 10 because they contain lettuce from a field possibly linked to a multi-state E. coli outbreak, federal officials said Monday.”

“The U.S. Food & Drug Administration news about Moore, Okla.-based Vaughan Foods was in an update on the multi-agency investigation into the outbreak with 19 confirmed and 10 probable cases of E. coli O145 illness in Michigan, New York and Ohio.  As part of that investigation, Freshway Foods of Sidney, Ohio, last Thursday recalled romaine lettuce products for foodservice under the Freshway and Imperial Sysco brands with use by dates of May 12 or earlier. The recalled goods had been distributed in Washington, D.C., and 23 eastern states. (EARLIER: Multi-state lettuce recall underway) Freshway Foods’ recall was prompted by a number of pieces of evidence, the FDA said, including lab tests in New York that found traces of E. coli O145 in an unopened bag of Freshway Foods shredded romaine. FDA officials said that investigators have confirmed that the E. coli discovered in the unopened bag of Freshway Foods romaine is the same genetic strain as the E. coli associated with the outbreak. Federal and state investigators are now attempting to determine the point in the supply chain where the E. coli contamination occurred. Investigators are examining a farm in or around Yuma, Ariz., that Freshway Foods’ trace-back records indicated supplied the recalled romaine. A determination that Vaughan Foods received romaine from that same Yuma field prompted the second recall, the FDA noted. FDA officials said lettuce harvested from other geographic areas does not appear to be associated with the E. coli O145 outbreak.”

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