Coli outbreak from romaine lettuce is finally over. But what caused it?

  • Coli outbreak from romaine lettuce is finally over. But what caused it?

Coli outbreak from romaine lettuce is finally over. But what caused it?

Contaminated canal water appears to have been the source of the national food poisoning out break linked to romaine lettuce grown in Yuma in April.

They previously connected the illnesses with romaine lettuce grown in Yuma, Arizona, which supplies most of the romaine sold in the USA during the winter, the Associated Press reported. New evidence showed bacteria taken from several canal water samples in the Yuma growing region to be a genetic match to the strain of bacteria that caused the outbreak, according to a statement from FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb on Thursday.

Polluted canal water may have been the reason 210 people, including three from the Mahoning Valley, became victims of an E. Coli outbreak earlier this year.

Although investigators determined that the E. coli came from contaminated romaine lettuce grown in Arizona's Yuma region near the border with Southern California, the Food and Drug Administration has not been able to link the outbreak to one farm, processor or distributor.

Although the government did not issue a recall, health officials were advising people to avoid eating romaine lettuce. The Centers for Disease Control says the outbreak is now officially over. More than 200 people got sick and about half of them had to be hospitalized. Single deaths were reported from Arkansas, California and NY, and two people died in Minnesota.

Yuma-sourced romaine is no longer in the marketplace. And worse, 27 people developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a type of kidney failure.

They are still investigating how the bacteria got into the canal.

"It is encouraging that public health officials found the outbreak strain of E. coli bacteria in the area", Fred added. It's believed that cattle contaminated a nearby stream, and wild pigs spread the contamination to fields, the AP reported. The vaccine was field-tested near the end of the major 2015 Ebola epidemic in West Africa, The New York Times reported.

5 people died, one each in Arkansas, California, and NY.

Water turned out to be the culprit behind the wave of E. coli illness in spring.