Romaine lettuce pulled from local stores

| 21/11/2018 | 25 Comments
Cayman News Service

Romaine lettuce

(CNS): Following an alert issued by the US Centers for Disease Control on Tuesday that outbreaks of E. coli appear to be linked to romaine lettuce, many Cayman stores and restaurants have pulled the produce from their shelves and menus. The Department of Environmental Health (DEH) is also urging the public, restaurant operators, wholesalers, and retailers not to purchase, eat, serve or sell romaine lettuce until otherwise notified.

The CDC has said it is trying to learn more about the outbreak of the disease but consumers who have any type of romaine lettuce in their home are being urged to throw it away, even if some of it was already consumed with no ill-effects, and clean the refrigerator where it was kept.

So far, 32 people in eleven different states in the US have been infected with the strain of the bacteria called Shiga toxin-producing E. coli O157:H7. Thirteen people have been hospitalised but no deaths have been reported. Meanwhile, according to the Public Health Agency of Canada, 18 ill people have been infected with the same strain in Ontario and Quebec.

The CDC said the Epidemiologic evidence indicates that romaine lettuce is a likely source of the outbreak as the bacteria is the same as the strain isolated from people who became ill in a 2017 outbreak linked to leafy greens in the United States and to romaine lettuce in Canada.

As no particular common grower, supplier, distributor, or brand of the popular lettuce has been identified as causing this latest outbreak, the CDC is urging people to stop consuming all types of romaine lettuce. The CDC also said people should talk with their healthcare provider if they are feeling unwell and to write down the food eaten in the week before getting sick.

Environmental Health Officers here in the Cayman Islands said they have had made contact with all wholesalers and local supermarkets to ensure the removal of all affected products from their shelves.

The DEH said that E. coli is a common bacteria found in the human digestive system. Its presence in food and water is an indication of faecal contamination. In rare circumstances, the organism can result in more severe illnesses, such as adult kidney failure, bleeding and seizures.

Anyone who has eaten this product and experiences any of these symptoms is asked to contact a medical provider immediately.

For further information concerning local efforts, contact the DEH at 949-6696. For other details, visit the CDC website.

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Category: Health, health and safety

Comments (25)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    The romaine empire has fallen. Ceaser is dead!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Population of the USA: 325,000,000. Cases of illness from romaine lettuce: 32.

  3. Anonymous says:

    I always knew salad and veg was bad for you!!

  4. GreenGenes says:

    Grow your own lettuce and micro-greens inside folks, LED lights are cheap. Lettuce only takes 4 weeks and micro-greens only take 7-10 days. You can even do this on your kitchen counter with a small setup. Just think, if all the food infrastructure in the USA becomes contaminated what options do we have? And yes I do and have been doing this for 2 years now.

    • Anonymous says:

      Agree, but one has to be aware about light spectrums.

      Plants need full spectrum light. A typical “daylight” bulb does have lots of blue spectrum, like the sun. BUT it doesn’t have enough red spectrum. Natural sunlight has both. When utilizing LEDs as sole-source lighting, one of the most important decisions is to determine the light spectrum to obtain desired plant responses.

      “A combination of blue (B; 400 to 500 nm) and red (R; 600 to 700 nm) light generally has been considered sufficient for the production of high-quality plants. This is mainly because B and R LEDs are the most energy efficient and the most efficient wavebands for driving photosynthesis in plants….Including far-red (FR; 700 to 800 nm) radiation in a radiation spectrum has the potential to regulate plant architecture (such as branching and plant height) and flowering time. Although FR radiation is barely visible to the human eye, it’s absorbed by an important photoreceptor in plants called phytochrome. FR radiation regulates a wide range of plant processes—including germination, extension growth, branching and flowering—depending on the ratio of R to FR (R:FR) and the crop. The sun emits almost as much FR as R light, so plants grown indoors aren’t surprisingly different from those grown with sunlight.”

      Effects of Blue Light on Plants

      • GreenGenes says:

        Way ahead of you buddy! I build my own multiple element micro controller LED setups. They can even mimic sunrise/sunset/cloud cover.

        • Anonymous says:

          I have some cannabis seeds for you to plant!

          • GreenGenes says:

            Sorry, but thanks for the offer. Unfortunately would have to move to a progressive jurisdiction to do that. A plant computer interface will probably be developed before it’s legal here. Then the plants will tell the controller how much artificial sun/nutrients they need.

  5. Anonymous says:

    I guess that’s what happens when you fertilize crops with cow shit.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Had food at a West Bay food stand and ate the steamed veg and got food poisoning.. makes me wonder if this is why now!

  7. Anonymous says:

    me eat Ice Berge Lettuce me no touch the pretty Romaine, like the woman pretty but dangerous. no sah.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Tossing ones salad is always recommended.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Lettuce hope it doesn’t affect anyone in Cayman.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Lettuce pray

  11. Anonymous says:

    first world hysteria….yawn.

    • Anonymous says:

      I’m guessing you’ve never had e coli poisoning then. I had it 2 years ago and spent a week in hospital. It’s very serious and something I would never want to go through again. But by all means, give it a try.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Bah. Most people discard the outside leaves and don’t wash it.

    Wash it. Put the washed leaves into a long kitchen towel and spin it.

    You’re welcome.

    CNS: Wrong. If anyone thinks this is good advice, read this first.

  13. Anonymous says:

    yeah…but most restaurants still preparing meals with them? my co-worker said a salad was prepared ata restaurant last night and sold to her containing romaine?…

    • Anonymous says:

      The salad bar at Fosters at the Strand had Romaine on offer too on Tuesday afternoon. I had it & thankfully seem ok!

      • Foster's IGA says:

        Hi there! We were notified of the advisory at 4PM on Tuesday and immediately pulled the product from our shelves and salad bar. We’re glad to know you’re ok!


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