Tanimura & Antle Inc. of Salinas, California announced a voluntary recall yesterday for cartons of bulk or wrapped romaine marked with the lot code 531380.
The lettuce was shipped to Alabama, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Texas, Massachusetts, Louisiana, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, North Carolina, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Nevada, Ohio, Oregon, Utah, Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming. Some lettuce also went to Puerto Rico and Canada.
The company has not explained where the contamination might have come from, but lettuce can be especially susceptible to bacterial growth, as even tiny creases in the leaves can create breeding grounds for microbes. Since lettuce usually isn’t heated before eating, that makes it less likely that any bacteria will be killed before it can endanger people.
As with most illnesses, young children, the elderly, pregnant women and those with compromised immune systems are most at risk.
image: romaine lettuce hort.purdue.edu