Anyone who went to buy groceries for Thanksgiving this morning may have noticed something missing. The Center for Disease Control issued a recall of all romaine lettuce throughout the nation as a potential E. Coli outbreak hit the shelves late Tuesday.
Local grocery stores including the Lower Bucks GIANT Food Marts and even the Langhorne Coffee House are all pulling romaine and anything with it as an ingredient from their menus until the CDC gives an all clear.
“We will not be serving romaine lettuce till further notice of the CDC,” the Langhorne Coffee House posted on Twitter early Wednesday morning.
Getting a bad case of an E. Coli pathogen can result in some pretty unpleasant symptoms, according to the CDC. The severity of the strain can influence how bad a person’s sickness becomes. Most people will experience a mild fever and stomach problems for about a week.
However, Bucks County Environmental Health Director Phil Smith says there’s only been 31 cases throughout the country, with the most recent case being October 31st. He recommends people not to panic if they think they’ve eaten romaine before hearing about the warning.
“I think they’re telling people to throw everything away as an abundance of caution,” Smith explained regarding the CDC. “They’re not even sure where it’s coming from or what the strain is. They’re just saying ‘because we have a problem, let’s just make sure to throw it all away.'”
Smith reported the CDC found the strain has similar traits to an outbreak from last year. An investigation report from the CDC’s website confirmed his recollection:
“Ill people in this outbreak were infected with E. coli bacteria with the same DNA fingerprint as the E. coli strain isolated from ill people in a 2017 outbreak linked to leafy greens in the United States and to romaine lettuce in Canada.”
Smith recommends anyone anyone experiencing nasty symptoms like nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea to see a physician.