e. coli outbreak

The CDC has documented 26 cases of people infected with E. coli across three different states. The culprit of the most recent E. coli outbreak? Prepackaged salads and sandwich wraps, including those sold at Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods. In response, Glass Onion Catering, which supplies Trader Joe’s with their bagged salads, has voluntarily recalled 181,620 pounds of prepared salads and sandwiches.

The particular strain in this E. coli outbreak,  STEC 0157:H7, can cause dehydration, bloody diarrhea, and abdominal cramps. It can also cause hemolytic uremic syndrome, a type of kidney failure that has occurred in two of the ill people.

The recalled product was removed from stores across Western North America, from Washington to Arizona and all the way down to Mexico.

The recalled salads, including Trader Joe’s Field Fresh Chopped Salad with Grilled Chicken and Trader Jose’s [sic] Mexicali Salad with Chili Lime Chicken, contain prepared chicken or ham. Whole Foods and Walgreen’s are also among the list of retailers pulling salads and sandwiches. The list includes the Delish Greek Style Orzo Salad, Delish Asian Style Noodle Salad, Delish Vegetarian Wrap, Classic Greek Salad, Southwestern Salad Kit and Wheat Berry Salad Kit.

While no deaths have been reported from the recent E. coli outbreak, the bacterium is potentially deadly, and consumers are encouraged to check their refrigerators for packaged salads and sandwiches. If you’ve consumed these products recently, watch out for signs of a STEC infection.

This is the same strain that was linked to an E. coli outbreak in organic spinach late last fall, as well as Romaine Lettuce in 2011, but it’s actually uncommon to find it in a poultry product.

For a full list of recalled items, refer to the USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service website.

Related on Organic Authority:

Romaine Officially Linked to E. Coli Outbreak

Stopping E. Coli at its Source

Is It Safe to Munch on a Mouthful of Sprouts?

Image: Susan Lucas Hoffman