FDA Investigates Maryland E. coli Outbreak Linked with Ready Pac Salad
FDA announces Outbreak Investigation concerning E. coli 0157:H7 from Ready Pac Bistro Chicken Caesar Salad in Maryland
Yesterday, November 20, 2019, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Center for Disease Control (CDC) announced an ongoing multistate E. coli 0157:H7 outbreak investigation. There have been 17 reported cases of E. coli 0157:H7 in 8 different states: Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Maryland, Montana, Washington, and Wisconsin. There have already been 8 hospitalizations due to this outbreak.
E. coli is a prevalent bacteria which resides in the gut of both humans and animals. When E. coli contaminated food or drink is consumed it can cause mild to severe gastrointestinal illness. Symptoms can include headache, fever, nausea, diarrhea, and vomiting. People can experience symptoms as late as nine days after consuming contaminated products.
The FDA and CDC are still working to discover the origin of this outbreak. A few patients illnesses have been linked to the consumption of Ready Pac Foods Bistro Chicken Caesar Salads, however, for other patients there seems to be no correlate to the salad. Nevertheless, the Maryland Department of Health discovered E. coli 0157:H7 in an unopened package of Ready Pac Foods Bistro Chicken Caesar Salad. The FDA is tracking the origins of romaine lettuce in the Caesar salads which they believed to be several farms in Salinas, California. Officials are continuing to investigate the correlation between the contamination of the salads and the outbreak, as well as other possibly origins.
People are advised to avoid consumption or contact with the Ready Pac Foods Bistro Chicken Caesar Salad products as a precautionary measure, until given further notice. The Ready Pac Food products of concern bear the “best by” date of October 31, 2019 and a lot number of 255406963.