256 E.Coli Cases Linked to Salad Greens Reported; Agencies Investigate

256 Cases Linked to E. coli Salad Greens; Agencies Investigate

United States: E.coli is still a major concern as the number of infected individuals has reached up to 250. The region has been witnessing an outbreak linked to salad greens.  The official data mentioned that the total number of cases of Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) O145 has been 256.

The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) has been investigating the matter, along with Public Health Scotland as well as Public Health Wales, as reported by Food Safety News.

England reported 168 cases, along with 29 in Wales and 56 in Scotland. Three (3) cases in Northern Ireland are likely linked to infections acquired in England. Patients span various age groups, predominantly young adults.

According to data from 227 cases so far, at least 86 individuals have required hospitalization. The official data mentioned that it is expected that the outbreak has been linked to pre-packed sandwiches, which had lettuce.

Following this, precautionary recall notices have been released by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) as well as Food Standards Scotland (FSS). Samworth Brothers and Greencore Group have recalled multiple items sold at major retailers such as Tesco, Aldi, Asda, Boots, Co-op, Morrisons, and Sainsbury’s.

Darren Whitby, head of incidents at FSA, noted collaboration with businesses and local authorities in the investigation.

“Several sandwich manufacturers have taken proactive steps to withdraw and recall various sandwiches, wraps, subs, and rolls. Through food chain analysis, we’ve identified a few salad leaves used in these products as the likely source,” he stated, as mentioned by Food Safety News.

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“While confident about the outbreak’s source being tied to a small selection of salad leaves, ongoing efforts focus on pinpointing the root cause in collaboration with growers, suppliers, and manufacturers to prevent recurrence. We remain vigilant and open-minded regarding potential causes.”

Legal ramifications are being explored.

Food safety experts from Leigh Day urge those affected by E. coli in food products to seek guidance.

Following the consumption of a recalled sandwich, a chartered surveyor diagnosed with E. coli engaged Irwin Mitchell’s lawyers for investigation.

John Daniels, from Macclesfield, bought a chicken and bacon Caesar wrap from a Manchester Boots branch on May 11. Within 48 hours, the 66-year-old began experiencing stomach pain, escalating to severe diarrhea and bloody stools.

He was admitted to the hospital on May 19, was diagnosed with E. coli the next day, and discharged on May 22, but readmitted five days later with Guillain-Barre Syndrome.

Sarita Sharma, public health lawyer at Irwin Mitchell, expressed concern over Daniels’ ordeal, emphasizing the UKHSA’s investigation linking his illness to the recalled sandwich.

Daniels shared, “The past month has been traumatic. I’ve never been this unwell before, knowing something was very wrong. Being diagnosed with E. coli and then Guillain-Barre Syndrome was a huge shock. My condition worsened, and complications arose. Physically, I’m still recovering and uncertain about the future. Learning about others affected is deeply upsetting,” as per Food Safety News.

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