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Schools replace romaine with iceberg lettuce
Some romaine is OK to eat; look for labels
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People infected with the outbreak strain of E. coli O157:H7, by state of residence, as of November 26.

Romaine lettuce was on the menu for Great Bend USD 428 schools this week but Food Service Director Kristy Alvord said it has been replaced with iceberg lettuce. 

Last week the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned people not to eat romaine lettuce after an outbreak of E. coli in several states. 

On Monday the warning was updated and narrowed to romaine lettuce from the Central Coastal growing regions of northern and central California.

“Our romaine is not from there,” Alvord said, adding she checked with the vendors. However, she discarded all romaine lettuce at the Central Kitchen.

“We have had no salads these last two days just to be on the safe side,” she said.

The CDC and the Food and Drug Administration are now advising that U.S. consumers not eat and retailers and restaurants not serve or sell any romaine lettuce from the targeted region. Health officials in several states and Canada continue to investigate a multi-state outbreak of Shiga toxin-producing E. coli O157:H7 illnesses linked to romaine lettuce.

If you do not know where your romaine lettuce is from, do not eat it, the CDC advises.

Romaine lettuce will be labeled with location information by region. It may take some time before these labels are available. When the labels are available, check labels or store signs for growing region before buying or eating romaine lettuce.

Romaine lettuce harvested from regions outside of the Central Coastal growing regions of northern and central California is not linked to this E. coli O157:H7 outbreak. Romaine lettuce grown in greenhouses or hydroponically is also not linked to this outbreak.

Forty-three people infected with the outbreak strain of Shiga toxin-producing E. coli O157:H7 have been reported from 12 states as of Monday. Sixteen of those people have been hospitalized, including one person with hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). No deaths have been reported. There have been no reported cases in Kansas.