Darien spreads word about CDC’s warning of romaine lettuce
Due to reports of people being infected with E. coli from romaine lettuce, on Tuesday, Nov. 20, Michelle Varrone of Darien's Health & Human Services Departments, sent out 128 emails to all food service facilities in town.
The email was intended to make sure staff remove all romaine lettuce from their shelves.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website, 32 people in 11 states were reported to have been infected with a strain of E. coli. Illnesses began on Oct. 8 and lasted through Oct. 31.
Thirteen people were hospitalized, including one person who developed hemolytic uremic syndrome, a type of kidney failure. No deaths have been reported, according to the CDC.
The CDC alert includes whole heads and hearts, as well as chopped, organic and salad mixes with romaine lettuce.
The warning also said not to eat the lettuce if its source can’t be confirmed.
This investigation is ongoing and the site will be updated as more information is available, according to the CDC.
“Any of the food service facilities that we issue permits to were notified, including restaurants, grocery stores, delicatessens, and schools, as well as any catering outfits and any facility that we give permits to,” said Darien’s health director David Knauf. “We are telling restaurants — ‘Don’t serve romaine lettuce. Or, if you get it, throw it away of send it back.’”
In response to the CDC’s warning, Palmer’s Market in Noroton Heights has pulled all romaine lettuce off its shelves.
By early afternoon on Wednesday, there were about 15 to 20 returns of the lettuce, according to Tony Mica, grocery buyer.
“It’s that time of year,” Mica said. “There are constantly recalls going on for sure, for various reasons, so we have to try to stay on top of it.”
Knauf said that the media is doing a good job of keeping the public informed of the matter.
For the latest developments with regard to the E. coli outbreak, visit cdc.gov.