First off, “shout out” to the eight prisoners at Anvil Mountain Correctional Center in Nome Alaskathat ate tainted whole-head romaine from an unnamed grower in Yuma Arizona. Your illnesses are tightening the likelihood that a grower will be implicated.
Second, I feel bad for the California romaine growers who are being hit by the ambiguity of the following warnings.
The FDA and CDC have both updated consumer warnings that in my view :
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, along with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state and local partners, are investigating a multistate outbreak of E. coli O157:H7 illnesses.
On April 19, 2018, Alaska health partners announced that several people in a correctional facility are infected with the outbreak strain of E. coli O157:H7. These individuals ate whole-head romaine lettuce from Yuma, Arizona. Based on this new information, the FDA is advising that consumers avoid all romaine lettuce from Yuma, Arizona. If you cannot determine the source of your romaine lettuce, throw it away and don’t eat it.
Based on new information, CDC is expanding its warning to consumers to cover all types of romaine lettuce from the Yuma, Arizona growing region. This warning now includes whole heads and hearts of romaine lettuce, in addition to chopped romaine and salads and salad mixes containing romaine.
Do not buy or eat romaine lettuce at a grocery store or restaurant unless you can confirm it is not from the Yuma, Arizona, growing region.
Unless the source of the product is known, consumers anywhere in the United States who have any store-bought romaine lettuce at home should not eat it and should throw it away, even if some of it was eaten and no one has gotten sick. Product labels often do not identify growing regions; so, throw out any romaine lettuce if you’re uncertain about where it was grown. This includes whole heads and hearts of romaine, chopped romaine, and salads and salad mixes containing romaine lettuce. If you do not know if the lettuce is romaine, do not eat it and throw it away.
Restaurants and retailers should not serve or sell any romaine lettuce from the Yuma, Arizona growing region.
The expanded warning is based on information from newly reported illnesses in Alaska. Ill people in Alaska reported eating lettuce from whole heads of romaine lettuce from the Yuma, Arizona growing region.
You have to wonder if the FDA named the Yuma grower and when that grower stopped production that the warning to not eat romaine lettuce from Yuma would have a bit more meaning.