The cafeteria salad bar line is not serving Romaine lettuce because of the E. coli recall. No word on when Romaine lettuce will return to CHS. Photo by VM Smith.

Romaine lettuce pulled from salad bar

No word on when leafy vegetable will return

November 27, 2018

The food service department quickly pulled romaine lettuce from the salad bar last week and does not know when the E.coli scare will subside and signal the return of the healthy lettuce, according to food service officials.

“We don’t take any chances. If there is any kind of concern, any kind at all, its removed,” said Leeanne Koeneman, food service director at Carroll High School.

The administration immediately shut down any use of romaine lettuce and swiftly substituted the contaminated vegetable with iceberg and spring mix.

Koeneman also said she was grateful the E.coli outbreak occurred during the shortened Thanksgiving week, since it allowed the department time for preparation. The timing of the outbreak also cost the school less money because the cafeteria didn’t have much of the romaine lettuce left in stock over the break.

According to the USDA, iceberg lettuce does not meet the required nutrients needed in school lunches and cannot be substituted for an extended period of time. However, it is approved due to this unusual situation and will remain so until romaine lettuce can once again be offered at school.

There have already been 16 deaths reported in the U.S. from E.coli residing in the leafy green, so people who ate a romaine salad may want to see a doctor if they experience any of the symptoms of E.coli infection.

“We have to do what is safe for the students first and foremost,” said Koeneman.


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