Romaine lettuce is likely source of E. coli outbreak across 13 states

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"Preliminary results show that the type of E. coli making people sick in both countries is closely related genetically", the agency said in a statement on December 28, "meaning the ill people are more likely to share a common source of infection". In the USA, state and local public health officials are interviewing sick people to determine what they ate in the week before their illnesses began. There's also been one reported death in Canada. But does this mean you should skip the romaine on your sandwich or in your salad?

The food-safety team at Consumer Reports is advising consumers to find a different lettuce until the cause is identified and tainted products are removed from stores.

Keep in mind that the USA is still investigating and can't say with 100 percent certainty that romaine lettuce is the cause of the infection here.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is investigating an outbreak of E. coli possibly linked to romaine lettuce that has sickened at least 58 people in the USA and Canada.

According to the CDC spokeswoman, there is not enough evidence at this time to indicate the sources of the illness in the U.S.

According to Consumer Reports, 58 people in the USA and Canada have become ill from the strain of E. coli - O157: H7 - in the last seven weeks. Yikes! It's worth noting that it's now unclear whether the outbreak is tied to a particular brand or producer of romaine or rather to the leafy green in general. Remember that romaine may also be lurking in bags of mixed greens. The agency says they can not yet link the outbreak to a certain type of food.

So far 17 illnesses have been reported in the United States, including three in California, according to the CDC.

Chapman suspects that officials will make an announcement soon about whether the US and Canadian outbreaks are indeed the same.

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