East Greenbush Central School District’s Food Service Department has re-introduced romaine lettuce back into meals in all school cafeterias following new guidance from the Food and Drug Administration and Centers for Disease and Control Prevention.
The District’s Food Service Department had stopped serving romaine lettuce on November 20 after the CDC announced a nationwide E. coli outbreak. The ensuing investigation by the FDA, CDC and California Departments of Public Health and Food and Agriculture traced the contamination back to harvest locations in three California counties: Monterey, San Benito and Santa Barbara.
The District’s supplier purchases romaine lettuce from farms in Arizona, which “is not linked to the outbreak,” according to the CDC.
“After the CDC identified the source of the contaminated romaine and our produce supplier confirmed that, at this time of the year, all of our produce comes from Yuma, Arizona, I felt safe to reintroduce the vitamin rich Romaine back into our salads,” said Phyllis Sanford-Krug, Food Service Manager.
Romaine lettuce meets the dark leafy greens category of the District’s child nutrition program.