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FDA says E. coli strain traced to California dairy farms

Market Watch
Food and Drug Administration

WASHINGTON—The Food and Drug Administration said Friday strains of E. coli bacteria from lettuce at some Taco John’s restaurants has been linked to dairy farms in central California.

The FDA said the dairy farms are located near lettuce farms. However, the FDA said it’s not clear how the E. coli samples found on the dairy farm might have contaminated the lettuce.

At least 81 people became ill during last November and December after eating at Taco John’s restaurants in Minnesota and Iowa. The agency said the Taco John’s outbreak is considered over.

Previously, Minnesota and Iowa health officials identified shredded iceberg lettuce as the likely source of E. coli infection.

The FDA said the Taco John’s illnesses are not linked to earlier E. coli infections associated with Taco Bell restaurants in the Northeast or last summer’s spinach outbreak. Taco Bell is a division of Yum Brands Inc. (YUM).

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