By Kristen Consillio: Investigations by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have linked the outbreak to romaine lettuce grown in certain areas of California.
The state is urging consumers not to avoid eating Hawaii-grown romaine lettuce, which was not involved in a nationwide E. coli outbreak, the Department of Agriculture said today.
“In fact, purchasing local produce at this time would help to strengthen Hawaii’s food security,” said Scott Enright, chairperson of the Hawaii Board of Agriculture, in a news release. “This most recent contamination outbreak underscores the importance of all industry members throughout the supply chain to follow a labeling program for their produce. Produce labeled with grower information and harvest date will help communicate to consumers that produce being re-introduced into retail and foodservice markets is safe to consume.”
The Agriculture Department is also reminding consumers to wash all produce before eating, no matter its origin.