Thanksgiving is tomorrow, which means Wasatch Back residents are busy buying and planning for their Thanksgiving meal. Many residents will be eating turkey, mashed potatoes and pie, but if you’re planning on eating a romaine salad or beef you might want to think again.
Summit County Health Department Public Information Officer Derek Siddoway says the CDC has released a food safety alert for all types of romaine lettuce in the U.S. and Canada.
“Consumers are being told not to eat any type of romaine lettuce.” Siddoway explained, “Retailers and restaurants are being told not to serve it or sell it until more information is available about the outbreak as the investigation continues. So, this is any romaine lettuce. Not just what you might get at the store today or tomorrow, but that you’ve had in your home for the past few days. Whether it’s a head of lettuce, the heart of the romaine lettuce, bags, boxes of precut lettuce and salad mixes. That’s baby romaine, spring mix Caesar salad, any type of romaine lettuce in any form. People are being asked to throw it away and if you have the head of lettuce in your fridge, we’re also recommending that you sanitize and clean out that compartment of your fridge as well, if it’s been touching the fridge directly.”
Siddoway also reports that the Swift Beef Company in Hyrum, Utah and Majestic Meat Company in Salt Lake City both have beef recalls due to possible E-coli contamination.
“Currently there have been no reported sicknesses from the ground beef at these two establishments, but the USDA has issued a recall.” Siddoway said, “We have the information with the package details on our website on Summit County Health.org. It will be under our recent announcements right at the front.”
Siddoway also reminds listeners that as they prepare their turkeys to make sure the internal temperature of the Thanksgiving bird reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit. The best places to check with a food thermometer are the middle of the stuffing, along with the thickest portions of the turkey breast and wings.
“We encourage everyone to make sure that they’re safely cooking their turkey.” Siddoway continued, “Make sure you’re hitting the proper temperatures for that just, so everyone can have a safe, healthy thanksgiving and enjoy all the food and the desert that go along with that.”
Siddoway says that although there have been no reported illnesses in Summit county from the romaine or beef recalls it’s best not to take the risk.
“The important thing is that people are just aware of what’s going on right now and if they do have the romaine lettuce that they throw it away and not take the chance of getting sick over the holiday weekend.” Siddoway explained, “Also, with the ground beef that they just go on either to the USDA website or onto our website and just check up on those product numbers to make sure that they don’t have that anywhere. Our concern is just making sure that everyone has a healthy, happy Thanksgiving weekend and that we don’t have any foodborne illness outbreaks.”