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Urgent Panama Health Alert - Romaine Lettuce

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Urgent Panama health alert

On the eve of American  Thanksgiving, Panama health authorities issued an urgent health alert, warning consumers, not to buy or consume  Romaine lettuce. The alert follows a similar one issued  in the United States  after outbreaks of E-coli food poisoning in a number of States,


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I believe they've traced the e-coli to California lettuce. I kind of doubt we have any California lettuce in Panama.

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Panama Suspends Lettuce Imports from the U.S.

Panamanian authorities suspended the import of the product from the United States, after the FDA issued an alert for the alleged presence of the Escherichia coli bacteria in Romaine.

Friday, November 23, 2018

From the statement of the Panamanian Food Safety Authority:

November 21st, 2018. Based on the statement issued by the FDA on the afternoon of November 20th of this year, which textually states the following:

“The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), along with state and local partners, are investigating a multistate outbreak of E. coli O157:H7 likely linked to romaine lettuce. At this time, the FDA recommends that consumers do not eat romaine lettuce and discard any product until we know more. Retailers, restaurants and other food service operators should not serve romaine lettuce until more is known about this outbreak. If consumers are experiencing symptoms of an E. coli O157:H7 infection, they should immediately seek the care of a health care professional.”

The Panamanian Food Safety Authority (AUPSA) has proceeded to adopt the following precautionary measures:

· The prohibition of imports of tariff items and sanitary registrations associated with romaine lettuce and other varieties of lettuce, while the competent authorities of the United States investigate to determine the origin of the outbreak.
· Informing importing companies of the products concerned to notify them of the measures taken to facilitate mutual cooperation.
· Verification of recently imported lettuces originating in the United States, to proceed with their immediate withdrawal from outlets and warehouses, and carry out the sanitary measure of destruction in a controlled manner.
· Verification of lettuce notifications that are close to their introduction into the country, to carry out the sanitary measure of return or destruction in a controlled manner.

It is important to note that the measures applied by AUPSA apply exclusively to lettuce from the United States.

We reiterate that AUPSA's primary function is to ensure that imported food entering the country comply with sanitary and phytosanitary standards, which guarantee food suitable for human and animal consumption, for which laboratory analysis of imported food is routinely performed.

We urge the population to inform themselves on our website (www.aupsa.gob.pa), Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, to clarify any information regarding imported food.





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Farm linked to romaine E. coli outbreak issues new recall for other produce

SANTA MARIA, Calif. — A farm in California connected with a recall of lettuce earlier this year recalled other types of produce Thursday, due to possible E. coli contamination.

In a press release from Adam Bros Farming, Inc., the company said it was voluntarily recalling red leaf lettuce, green leaf lettuce and cauliflower, harvested from Nov. 27 through Nov. 30.

The company stated the products did not test positive for E. coli, but were recalled “out of an abundance of caution,” because the produce was grown near the location where the FDA found E. coli matching the strain in the outbreak.

Adam Bros. Farming, Inc. said it had notified customers affected by the recall. They asked that the products not be eaten, sold or transferred.

The FDA announced Thursday that investigators found a positive E. coli sample result in an irrigation reservoir on a farm owned by Adam Bros. Farms.

“This bacteria may cause a diarrheal illness from which most healthy adults can recover completely within a week,” the company said in a press release. “Some people can develop a form of kidney failure called Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome (HUS). HUS is most likely to occur in young children and the elderly. The condition can lead to serious kidney damage and even death.”

As of Thursday, 59 people in 15 states were sickened in the outbreak.

For more information on the latest recall, click here.



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