KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Salad is supposed to be good for you, but for thousands now, romaine lettuce is just a little scarier.
Two people are dead, and nearly 60 others are sick across the United States and Canada after an E. Coli outbreak connected to romaine lettuce, according to The Center for Disease Control and Consumer Reports.
Unless you’re feeling sick right now, as long as you don’t eat any romaine, you should be fine.
“It’s definitely pretty wild,” Andrew O’Toole said. “It’s kind of crazy that you can show up to the grocery store and take something home that can kill you, and nobody wants that to happen.”
“It kind of makes you nervous because you go into grocery stores, and you see all those pre-made salads in clam shells, and you wonder where they’ve been, how long they’ve been sitting there, how fresh they are,” Zack Sanders said.
Consumer Reports said the leafy vegetable is the source of the outbreak.
“They can experience a range of symptoms,” Dana Hawkinson with the University of Kansas Health System said. “Things such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea — things of that nature.”
Hawkinson said it can be hard to tell if you simply ate something bad or you’re actually infected.
“If you just start feeling a lot worse than you normally do after you have an illness like this. Because most people have had gastrointestinal illnesses in their lifetime, and they recover pretty quickly,” Hawkinson said of one way to tell.
He said if you’re still not feeling well after a few days, it may be best to see a doctor — and throw that lettuce in the trash.
“You don’t really know where it’s been before you bring it home, so you’ve got to do everything you can do on your end,” O’Toole said.
“You wish it didn’t happen, but outbreaks in food happen pretty often,” Sanders said. “So there’s not much you can do except try to stay away from it and try to keep alert.”
Based on tweets from the chain restaurant, Wendy’s restaurants nationwide have temporarily stopped selling salads containing romaine lettuce, citing the concern over romaine lettuce.
They issued the following statement to Fox 4:
“We haven’t removed all salads from our menu—just those containing romaine lettuce. Wendy’s restaurants in the U.S. and Canada have temporarily removed Caesar Salads from our menu, but our customers can still enjoy our other fresh-made salads, like the Taco Salad or Power Mediterranean Salad. It’s important to note that we are not aware of any romaine lettuce purchased or consumed from a Wendy’s restaurant having been linked to the investigations in any way. This temporary removal of romaine lettuce from our restaurants is simply a measure we’re taking out of an abundance of caution and to avoid any customer confusion.”
Chipotle said on Twitter that their restaurants are not affected by the romaine lettuce recall, but they are closely monitoring the recall.
Fox 4 is working to determine what other chain restaurant might be affected by the recall.
There is no connection between our restaurants and the concerns surrounding lettuce. We’re monitoring the situation closely and are prepared to take action, if necessary, to ensure the integrity of our food. -Gabe
— Text GUAC MODE to 888-222 (@ChipotleTweets) January 5, 2018