Whether you're an avid fan of making salads, if you really love making DIY taco bars, or if you happen to be a diehard veggie sandwich enthusiast, listen up — a massive romaine lettuce recall is currently affecting several U.S. states from a California-based company, due to a possible e. coli contamination. E. coli is a type of bacteria that generally comes from feces, and sometimes, it can affect vegetables if livestock comes into contact with the crops being grown on a farm.
Regardless of how the lettuce was contaminated, it's absolutely vital to read up on the romaine recall, to ultimately figure out if you were one of thousands of U.S. consumers affected, and if so, how you should proceed. E. coli can be incredibly dangerous and is sometimes fatal, depending on your age, health, and a variety of other factors, so it's important to take every preventative measure possible, in order to avoid contracting it.
Although no reported cases of E. coli have come from the lettuce recall, it's important to stay informed.
Tanimura & Antle is the West Coast-based company that voluntarily recalled its romaine lettuce in 19 different states and one U.S. territory, due to a possible contamination with E. Coli 0157:H7. According to the FDA, the affected areas include: Alaska, Arkansas, Oregon, California, Texas, Oklahoma, Indiana, Nevada, Missouri, Tennessee, Wisconsin, New Mexico, South Carolina, Washington, North Carolina, Ohio, Virginia, Massachusetts, Illinois, and Puerto Rico.
According to Thrillist, the brand is predominantly sold at Walmart, and the affected products only included packaged single heads of romaine lettuce, labeled with a packaging date between Oct. 15 and Oct. 16. Although there have not yet been any reported illnesses as of Tuesday, Nov. 10, the E. coli was detected when the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development found it in a random test sample, and therefore, it was important to alert consumers.
Here's how to proceed, if you were one of several consumers or retailers affected by the romaine lettuce recall:
If you were one of many who purchased Tanimura & Antle's packaged single head romaine lettuce from any of the above states with the above packaging date, the FDA strongly suggests tossing it immediately (and we strongly suggest composting it, if you can!). This definitively ensures that nobody in your household consumes the potentially affected product in the most eco-friendly way possible.
E. coli O157:H7 causes diarrhea that can sometimes be bloody, according to the FDA. While most healthy adults can recover within a week, there have been cases of kidney failure, mostly within young children and older people. It can lead to kidney damage and potentially death, so if you've experienced any of the above symptoms, we strongly suggest contacting a doctor ASAP.
Regardless of your age or health, E. coli definitely isn't something you want to risk contracting, so if you bought Tanimura & Antle romaine lettuce in any of the above U.S. locations, toss it immediately. While we truly can't stand wasting food, contracting food poisoning would — without a doubt — make 2020 so much worse than it already has been.