Saturday, January 13, 2007

E.Coli Strain Linked to California

Article in the Washington Post -- Officials Track E. Coli Strain to Calif., by Andrew Bridges of the Associated Press:

Contaminated California-grown lettuce was the possible source of the E. coli outbreak that sickened more than 80 people late last year at Taco John's restaurants in two states, health officials said Friday.

State and federal investigators said they have matched the strain of the bacteria associated with the outbreak to two samples taken from dairy farms in California's Central Valley. The farms are located near lettuce fields, the Food and Drug Administration said.

Investigators continue to study whether bacteria-laden manure from the dairy farms could have contaminated the nearby lettuce-growing areas, the FDA said. The FDA said other sources of contamination were possible.

The outbreak sickened about 81 people who had eaten at Taco John's restaurants in Minnesota and Iowa in November and December. Among those sickened, 26 were hospitalized. There were no deaths.

BGS

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