All Romaine lettuce potentially contaminated with E. coli and NOT safe to eat

Gingergrrl

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My sister just e-mailed me this link that ALL Romaine lettuce is currently NOT safe to eat and potentially contaminated with E. Coli. I have eaten Romaine lettuce several times this week from a pre-packaged bag of lettuce from Whole Foods and also in a salad from a restaurant :bang-head:.

This is so annoying and scary :(:mad::nervous: and I wanted to post this before anyone else from PR eats it and so you can warn your friends and family (only two days before Thanksgiving in the US)! The E. Coli is in Romaine lettuce in Canada as well.

Here is the link and a few quotes:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/nati...ory.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.a276a9809e8c

Romaine lettuce is unsafe to eat in any form, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Tuesday in a food safety alert in response to a new outbreak of illnesses caused by a particularly dangerous type of E. coli bacteria.
CDC told consumers to throw away any romaine lettuce they may already have purchased. Restaurants should not serve it, stores should not sell it, and people should not buy it, no matter where or when the lettuce was grown. It doesn’t matter if it is chopped, whole head or part of a mix.
The CDC reported that 32 people in 11 states have become sick from eating contaminated romaine. Of those, 13 have been hospitalized, with one patient suffering from a form of kidney failure. The Public Health Agency of Canada has reported that 18 people have been infected with the same strain of E. coli. in Ontario and Quebec.
California has the highest number of reported illnesses, with 10, followed by Michigan with seven, New Jersey with three, Illinois, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and New York with two each, and the remainder in Connecticut, Maryland, Ohio and Wisconsin.
 
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The Science Is Clear: Dirty Farm Water Is Making Us Sick
lettuce-182848247.jpg
This story originally appeared on Reveal and is part of the Climate Desk collaboration.

William Whitt suffered violent diarrhea for days. But once he began vomiting blood, he knew it was time to rush to the hospital. His body swelled up so much that his wife thought he looked like the Michelin Man, and on the inside, his intestines were inflamed and bleeding.

For four days last spring, doctors struggled to control the infection that was ravaging Whitt, a father of three in western Idaho. The pain was excruciating, even though he was given opioid painkillers intravenously every 10 minutes for days.

His family feared they would lose him.

“I was terrified. I wouldn’t leave the hospital because I wasn’t sure he was still going to be there when I got back,” said Whitt’s wife, Melinda.

Whitt and his family were baffled: How could a healthy 37-year-old suddenly get so sick? While he was fighting for his life, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention quizzed Whitt, seeking information about what had sickened him.

Finally, the agency’s second call offered a clue: “They kept drilling me about salad,” Whitt recalled. Before he fell ill, he had eaten two salads from a pizza shop.

The culprit turned out to be E. coli, a powerful pathogen that had contaminated romaine lettuce grown in Yuma, Arizona, and distributed nationwide. At least 210 people in 36 states were sickened. Five died and 27 suffered kidney failure. The same strain of E. coli that sickened them was detected in a Yuma canal used to irrigate some crops.

For more than a decade, it’s been clear that there’s a gaping hole in American food safety: Growers aren’t required to test their irrigation water for pathogens such as E. coli. As a result, contaminated water can end up on fruits and vegetables.

After several high-profile disease outbreaks linked to food, Congress in 2011 ordered a fix, and produce growers this year would have begun testing their water under rules crafted by the Obama administration’s Food and Drug Administration.

But six months before people were sickened by the contaminated romaine, President Donald Trump’s FDA – responding to pressure from the farm industry and Trump’s order to eliminate regulations – shelved the water-testing rules for at least four years.
 

Gingergrrl

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But six months before people were sickened by the contaminated romaine, President Donald Trump’s FDA – responding to pressure from the farm industry and Trump’s order to eliminate regulations – shelved the water-testing rules for at least four years.
:mad::mad::mad::bang-head::bang-head::bang-head: I can't say what I really think of this without being banned from the forum. On a positive note, enough time has passed since me and my sister and other family members ate Romaine lettuce so we appear to be in the clear from the E.coli. I don't plan to eat lettuce (of any kind) any time soon :vomit:
 
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:mad::mad::mad::bang-head::bang-head::bang-head: I can't say what I really think of this without being banned from the forum.
Of course you can, being banned is a last resort and only occurs when a member refuses to cooperate with moderation efforts. Anyway, political posts related to ME/CFS are allowed.

This issue is quite related to ME/CFS as the majority of us are already in very poor condition, with an emphasis on poor gastrointestinal function.

It's also not really a partisan political debate. Notice that the previous administration also failed to seriously address this issue, allowing seven years to go by before even requiring producers to assess the quality of their irrigation water. :cautious:
After several high-profile disease outbreaks linked to food, Congress in 2011 ordered a fix, and produce growers this year would have begun testing their water under rules crafted by the Obama administration’s Food and Drug Administration.

These are preventable outbreaks. As the link above mentions, the United States is falling behind in government oversite, apparently prioritizing industry profits over public health.
Though the E. coli strain contaminated lettuce somewhere between farm field and salad bowl, the federal agencies can’t yet say where. It’s likely it will take them a while to find out—while more people fall ill and massive amounts of food get thrown away—because, in the United States, we do a terrible job of tracking the path our produce takes from farm to fork.

The technical term for a documented path is traceability. Other countries—for instance, Japan and the nations of the European Union—do this routinely. But in the United States, the procedures that might make our food supply more traceable have been caught in a tug of war between federal officials, who want to solve outbreaks more quickly, and growers and shippers, who are resistant to investing in technology they don’t think they need. Stic Harris, director of the outbreak response unit at the Food and Drug Administration, hinted at the persistent disagreements Friday afternoon in a call with reporters.
 

HowToEscape?

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Not wanting to go to far off topic, but this sort of thing is not recent. For example in the United States low levels of antibiotics were allowed in animal feed for a number of decades, and the practice is not entirely banned yet.
Ummmmm OK that’s far enough off topic
 

Gingergrrl

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Of course you can, being banned is a last resort and only occurs when a member refuses to cooperate with moderation efforts. Anyway, political posts related to ME/CFS are allowed.
I was just joking (re: being banned :D) but you honestly don't want me to share my feelings about our current (US) president on this issue, or any other, b/c they would not be pretty :angel:

These are preventable outbreaks. As the link above mentions, the United States is falling behind in government oversite, apparently prioritizing industry profits over public health.
I agree they are preventable outbreaks, and I agree with you that some of it pre-dates this administration, but policies that helped to make the world a better place are all currently being reversed by this administration until there will be nothing left and everything that this administration touches has died.

For example in the United States low levels of antibiotics were allowed in animal feed for a number of decades, and the practice is not entirely banned yet.
This is also a horrific practice and they are not just any antibiotics in the animal feed but fluoroquinolones :mad:
 
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Not wanting to go to far off topic, but this sort of thing is not recent. For example in the United States low levels of antibiotics were allowed in animal feed for a number of decades, and the practice is not entirely banned yet.
Ummmmm OK that’s far enough off topic
That's hardly off topic, numerous reports going back a quarter of a century indicate that livestock handling practices are the source of this contaminate.

Apparently, as a group, we're too fucking stupid to solve this problem.
 

HowToEscape?

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That's hardly off topic, numerous reports going back a quarter of a century indicate that livestock handling practices are the source of this contaminate.

Apparently, as a group, we're too fucking stupid to solve this problem.
“ Think of how stupid the average person is. Then consider that 50% are more stupid than that.“

- George Carlin
 
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Everyone must become above average.
You know, I've spent most of my life thinking that there are no stupid people. How dumb is that? :D

Anyway, what I'm referring to, is the fact that we are all capable of overcoming the exceptional challenges we are facing today. Problems like this one have arisen from weaknesses, that I believe we will eventually grow out of as a species.

Elon Musk mentioned to Joe Rogan on a podcast recently, that we are integrating with computers in such a way that we are becoming smarter. They were discussing neural links and the fact that we are already quite connected with computers, through Google for example, giving us the ability to access information much more efficiently, in effect becoming smarter.

As we communicate more effectively, through forums like this for example, we can find solutions that improve the lives of all involved.

Much quicker than a quarter of a century. ;)
 

Gingergrrl

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I got an e-mail from Cleveland Clinic with some additional info about the strain of E.coli from the Romaine lettuce and why this one is particularly bad. Since this seems to occur every year, I think I am done eating Romaine lettuce forever even though I like it.

Edit: Sorry the link is so long! This happened to me before but I forgot how you shorten the link!

https://health.clevelandclinic.org/heres-why-the-latest-e-coli-outbreak-affecting-romaine-lettuce-is-especially-dangerous/?utm_source=marketo&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=health essentials 11-27-18&utm_content=story1 img&mkt_tok=eyJpIjoiTmprMk1EWTBaVFl5WVdSaCIsInQiOiJ4N3N4ellseFlqYllpcTl1TkgzdUxYWjVkSzdjTXdHb1gxOWExQ0xPSmVIcjVycEo0S1NFRytmd09yWUtydXNnYWlhTkIzQWtTdEQrTHJVemtOM1VLRXJKSU5iOVwvNFBTQXNLdWpCdHNwYzlxVFdnNTU3cWZhamJkSVd1TUE0RlcifQ==
 

HowToEscape?

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I got an e-mail from Cleveland Clinic with some additional info about the strain of E.coli from the Romaine lettuce and why this one is particularly bad. Since this seems to occur every year, I think I am done eating Romaine lettuce forever even though I like it.

Edit: Sorry the link is so long! This happened to me before but I forgot how you shorten the link!

https://health.clevelandclinic.org/heres-why-the-latest-e-coli-outbreak-affecting-romaine-lettuce-is-especially-dangerous/?utm_source=marketo&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=health essentials 11-27-18&utm_content=story1 img&mkt_tok=eyJpIjoiTmprMk1EWTBaVFl5WVdSaCIsInQiOiJ4N3N4ellseFlqYllpcTl1TkgzdUxYWjVkSzdjTXdHb1gxOWExQ0xPSmVIcjVycEo0S1NFRytmd09yWUtydXNnYWlhTkIzQWtTdEQrTHJVemtOM1VLRXJKSU5iOVwvNFBTQXNLdWpCdHNwYzlxVFdnNTU3cWZhamJkSVd1TUE0RlcifQ==
There’s nothing about why it seems to affect Romain lettuce more often than other leafy greens. Is that simply because we use more Romaine than spinach?
 
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Edit: Sorry the link is so long! This happened to me before but I forgot how you shorten the link!
Insert a link to a webpage

  • Copy the URL (you can find the URL of a webpage at the top of the page of your browser, URL's begin with http://)
  • Type a name for your link and then highlight the name using your mouse
  • Click on the chain icon and a pop-up will appear
  • Paste the URL of the link into the text box
  • Click 'Insert'

To edit your link:

  • Highlight the link you have inserted with your mouse
  • Click on the chain icon, and make any necessary changes
  • Click 'insert'
 

Gingergrrl

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There’s nothing about why it seems to affect Romain lettuce more often than other leafy greens. Is that simply because we use more Romaine than spinach?
That's a great question and I have no idea re: the answer! Although I do remember several recalls of spinach in prior years b/c of E.coli (or other pathogens). I guess if the water/irrigation system is dirty, it can affect anything. But there are definitely many recalls of Romaine lettuce compared to other things.

Thank you, ITITJ, and I am going to study this at a later date when I am more alert! What's weird though is why the link (which is the URL that I copied from my browser) is so incredibly long!

But separate from that, I do want to re-learn what you just told me (re: how to replace the link with your own word or phrase). I have been shown how to do this at least twice before but for some reason, I just cannot retain how to do it!
 
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I was hoping that maybe a bleach wash would be sufficient for making produce safe to eat, but no such luck. :(

How to Kill E. coli on Vegetables

...To find out, I contacted the International Food Information Council, which kindly put me in touch with Dr. Robert Brackett, the Director of the Institute for Food Safety and Health at the Illinois Institute of Technology.
Dr. Brackett had sobering news: Although these sanitizing methods might make your produce slightly cleaner, none of them will make contaminated produce safe to eat.

I wondered whether these very toxic strains of E. coli might be especially hard to kill. It turns out that they’re not really that invincible—they’ve just developed some very clever survival tactics. “If these E. coli bacteria were just floating around in a bucket of water, a little bleach or even some vinegar would kill them right away,” Dr. Brackett explains. “But once the bacteria have attached themselves to the surface of a vegetable, they become much harder to kill.”

When these bacteria attach to a surface, they produce a substance called “biofilm,” which encases the bacteria in a sort of shell and helps them stick to whatever they’ve latched onto. This coating keeps them from being washed away and also protects them from chemicals that could otherwise disable them. In other words, adding a few drops of bleach to the water you use to wash vegetables will kill any bacteria in the water but won’t do much to the bacteria on the vegetables.

E. coli doesn’t just sit around on the surface of vegetables, either. The bacteria can also penetrate into the interior tissues of the plant, where no sanitizer can reach them. And here's another reason that chemical sanitization can’t guarantee your safety: Even if a sanitizer succeeded in killing 99.9% of the bacteria present, that could still leave thousands of viable cells--and it only takes one to make you sick.