A recent parasite outbreak in Iowa and Nebraska has been blamed on bagged salad.
Health officials in Iowa believe that bagged salad is the cause of a cyclospora outbreak. More than 140 people have been sickened in Iowa and nearly 80 have been sickened in Nebraska. The disease has effected at least 372 people in 15 states since June.
Steven Mandernach, the chief of the Food and Consumer Safety Bureau in Iowa, said that mixed salads containing iceberg and romaine lettuce, carrots and red cabbage, were responsible for the parasitic outbreak.
Mandernach said: “The evidence points to a salad mix containing iceberg and romaine lettuce, as well as carrots and red cabbage as the source of the outbreak reported in Iowa and Nebraska…”
Mandernach, said that the effected bagged salad has been removed from the market and that Iowan’s shouldn’t be worried about buying prepackaged products.
Mandernach said: “Iowans should continue eating salads as the implicated prepackaged mix is no longer in the state’s food supply chain.”
The brand of bagged salad has not been identified and it is unclear if it is a domestic or imported product.
The Food and Drug Administration said that it has following the leads provided by state health inspectors but it was also conducting its own investigation.
The FDA said in a statement: “FDA will continue to work with its federal, state and local partners in the investigation to determine whether this conclusion applies to the increased number of cases of cyclosporiasis in other states… The goal will be to combine information collected from other affected states with that provided by the state health authorities in Iowa to identify a specific food item linked to the illnesses.”