Panera finds new provider for romaine lettuce after E. coli conc - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Panera finds new provider for romaine lettuce after E. coli concerns

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WARREN, Ohio -

A Valley-based restaurant chain is switching things up in response to a warning from the CDC over romaine lettuce. 

Panera bread says they have begun getting shipments of romaine lettuce from a different provider, after a warning from the Centers for Disease Control regarding a possible E. coli contamination in romaine lettuce from the Yuma, Arizona region. 

According to a spokesperson for Covelli Enterprises, which owns more than 300 Panera restaurants, the company has found a new supplier from outside the Yuma, Arizona region to provide romaine. 

The company says that they received a new shipment on Monday and was prepared to begin offering romaine on a limited basis. 

According to a statement, each Panera store only received a limited supply of romaine lettuce and therefore, it will only be available for in-store purchases. Salads stocked with romaine will continue to be listed as out of stock online. 

The move comes after a warning late last week by the CDC warning that chopped romaine lettuce was linked to an E. coli outbreak in 11 states which had left at least 35 people sick, including two Mahoning County women. 

One of those women was temporarily hospitalized last month, but both have since recovered according to the Ohio Department of Health.

E. coli is a bacteria that causes diarrhea often with bloody stools.

Concern over the outbreak prompted the following tweet from foodsafety.gov, a website published by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

E.coli outbreak: Check your fridge! Throw away all chopped romaine lettuce, including salad mixes containing romaine. Clean all fridge, counter, and food surfaces with warm soapy water.

The CDC says that so far none of the E. coli cases have been linked to heads of romaine lettuce or hearts of romaine, only chopped romaine.

Most people reported eating a salad at a restaurant, and romaine lettuce was the only common ingredient identified among the salads eaten.

The restaurants reported using bagged, chopped romaine lettuce to make salads.

Over the weekend, stores such as Walmart, Sam's Club, and Giant Eagle issued recalls for romaine lettuce products, including those sold in the catering, restaurant, and salad bar areas.

The CDC on Friday advised consumers anywhere in the United States not to eat and throw away any store-bought chopped romaine lettuce at home, including salads and salad mixes containing chopped romaine lettuce.

Before purchasing romaine lettuce at a grocery store or eating it at a restaurant, consumers should confirm with the store or restaurant that it is not chopped romaine lettuce from the Yuma, Arizona growing region.

If you can't confirm the source of the romaine lettuce, do not buy it or eat it, says the CDC.
 

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