PHOENIX, Arizona (Associated Press) – U.S. Health officials on Friday told consumers to throw away any business-bought romaine lettuce they have in their kitchens and warned restaurants not to serve it in the midst of an E. coli outburst that has ignited more than 50 people in some states.
The US Centers For Disease Control and Prevention, the warning about foul Romain from Arizona was widened as news of new illnesses led to caution about eating any kind of salad that could come from the city of Yuma. Officials did not find the origin of the contaminated vegetables.
Earlier, CDC officials warned only against shredded Romain itself or as part of salads and salad mixes. But they are now expanding the risk on heads or hearts of romaine lettuce.
Recently, people in Alaska Prison reported being sick after consuming whole Roman heads. They were returned to the lettuce harvested in the Yuma region after the CDC
So far, the outbreak has infected 53 people in 1
Symptoms of E. coli infection include diarrhea, severe stomach cramps and vomiting.
CDC's updated recommendation states that consumers should not buy or eat Roman romaine from a grocery or restaurant nationwide Get confirmation that it's not from Yuma. People should also throw any romance that they already have at home, unless it is known that it was not from the area, the agency said.
Restaurants and retailers were warned not to serve or sell Yuma's Romana Salad.
Romaine grown in coastal and central California, Florida and central Mexico is not endangered, according to the Produce Marketing Association.
The Yuma region, located about 298 kilometers southwest of Phoenix and near the California border, is referred to as the country's "winter vegetable capital." It is known for its agriculture and often indulges in events such as a salad festival.
Steve Alameda, president of the Yuma Fresh Vegetable Association, which represents local breeders, said the outbreak had heavily burdened him and other farmers.  "We want to know what happened," said Alameda. "We can not afford to lose consumer confidence, it's heartbreaking for us, we take it very personally."
The breeders in Yuma usually plant romaine lettuce between September and January. During the height of the harvest season, which runs from mid-November to early April, the Yuma region provides most of the Roman salt sold in the US, Alameda said. The outbreak came when the harvest of Romaine was almost over.
While Alameda has not met with any member of the CDC, he checks his own business. He discusses food safety practices and audit operations in agriculture.