Throw out that romaine lettuce!

RBC | If you were planning on enjoying a salad with your Thanksgiving feast, you might be better off with the sweet potatoes or the green bean casserole. The Centers for Disease Control and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a food safety alert Tuesday, Nov. 20, after 32 people in 11 states have fallen ill with a particularly virulent strain of E. coli between Oct. 8 and Oct. 31. Thirteen people were hospitalized. Romaine lettuce has been linked to the outbreak.

Thus far, no cases have been reported in Colorado, but the CDC is encouraging people to forego consumption of all romaine lettuce.

The CDC advises:

  • Consumers who have any type of romaine lettuce in their home should not eat it and should throw it away, even if some of it was eaten and no one has gotten sick.
    • This advice includes all types or uses of romaine lettuce, such as whole heads of romaine, hearts of romaine, and bags and boxes of precut lettuce and salad mixes that contain romaine, including baby romaine, spring mix, and Caesar salad.
    • If you do not know if the lettuce is romaine or whether a salad mix contains romaine, do not eat it and throw it away.
    • Wash and sanitize drawers or shelves in refrigerators where romaine was stored. Follow these five steps to clean your refrigerator.
  • Restaurants and retailers should not serve or sell any romaine lettuce, including salads and salad mixes containing romaine.
  • Take action if you have symptoms of an E. coli infection:
    • Talk to your healthcare provider.
    • Write down what you ate in the week before you started to get sick.
    • Report your illness to the health department.
    • Assist public health investigators by answering questions about your illness.