2 in New Hampshire affected by E coli linked to lettuce

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When news broke Tuesday that consumers should avoid eating romaine lettuce because of an E. coli outbreak, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention swiftly demanded retailers remove the vegetable from store shelves and restaurants stop including it in meals.

Two cases were in Illinois, neither of which resulted in hospitalization, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health.

Manager of Health Protection at Ottawa Public Health Sherry Beadle confirmed that a local person, under the age of 65, had contracted the illness.

"Basically it's lightning striking twice", said Prof. "I think food safety should take priority".

"This is a problem that could have been prevented if FDA had been able to find the root cause in that case and taken appropriate steps with the farmers", Sorcscher said. Now there are no food recalls associated with this outbreak.

In addition to the New Brunswick case, there have been 15 confirmed cases of the bacterial infection in Quebec and three in Ontario since mid-October, according to the Public Health Agency of Canada. No deaths have been reported.

A recall has not been issued at this time.

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During the last romaine alert in April, Just Salad switched in organic mesclun, organic arugula, shredded kale, baby spinach, red cabbage and iceberg lettuce, he said.

Jennie-O recalled nearly 100,000 pounds of raw turkey products in an ongoing salmonella outbreak.

Under the Consumer Protection Act, consumers are therefore to refrain from purchasing or consuming imported Romaine lettuce until further notice. "So far we have contacted QFC, Fred Meyer, and Safeway to verify recall notification and product removal", state health officials emailed. Stores and restaurants should not sell or serve it.

"We are working on obtaining additional retail information from distributors who may have received the recalled product and will let you know when we have additional information to share".

Major grocery chains in Canada - including Loblaw Companies Limited, Sobeys Inc. and Metro Inc. - announced Wednesday they were voluntarily removing romaine lettuce products from their stores across the country.

Customers don't have to have a receipt for the refund but Lowrie said it would be helpful of they could return the romaine in its original packaging.

People infected with E. coli can have a wide range of symptoms, which include nausea, vomiting, headache, mild fever, severe stomach cramps, watery or bloody diarrhea. People usually get better within five to 10 days and there is no "real treatment" apart from staying hydrated. "They are not actually coming down with a decision, they are saying 'hey, be careful". Most forms of the bacteria are harmless. For other consumers, the health agency has provided tips on lowering your risk of illness, including washing your hands and the produce thoroughly and discarding the outer leaves of fresh lettuce.

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