Shredded romaine lettuce from Freshway Foods is believed to have caused 19 confirmed cases of E. coli illnesses in Michigan, Ohio, and New York. 12 people have been hospitalized, and three now have a potentially life threatening complication called hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). With HUS, your body’s blood-clotting mechanisms are altered, causing blocked circulation or bleeding in the brain or kidneys, according to the FDA.
The FDA is focusing its investigation on lettuce grown in Arizona as a possible source for the outbreak, the AP reports. After several weeks of investigation, the contamination was discovered Wednesday in a bag of Freshway Foods shredded romaine lettuce by the New York State Public Health Laboratory in Albany. The company has now recalled all lettuce with a "best if used by" date of May 12th or earlier. The recall also affects "grab and go" salads sold at Kroger, Giant Eagle, Ingles Markets and Marsh grocery stores.
At least two people in New York State—a Daemen College student in Amherst and a Dutchess County resident—were sickened by the bacterial outbreak; they are said to be recovering. But the risk of shitting blood, kidney damage, and death wasn't enough to keep 21-year-old Sai Lawrence from eating her romaine salad in Times Square yesterday. Informed about the E. Coli outbreak by the Post, Lawrence said, "I'm scared, but I already paid for this."