Justin Norton of the Associated Press reports that the number of people sickened by an E. coli outbreak traced to tainted spinach rose to 109 on Sunday, as federal officials announced more brands recalling their products.
Meanwhile, the company linked to the outbreak, Natural Selection Foods LLC, announced that its work with federal and state heath inspectors confirmed that the contamination did not come from its organic spinach. Manufacturing codes from packages of spinach that infected patients turned over to health officials all were from non-organic spinach, the company said in a statement late Sunday. Natural Selection packages both organic and conventionally grown spinach in separate areas at its San Juan Bautista plant.
The outbreak has prompted Natural Selection, the world’s largest producer of organic produce, to recall 34 brands. They include the company’s own labels and those of other companies that had contracts with Natural Selection to produce or package its spinach.
States reporting cases were California, Connecticut, Idaho, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, New Mexico, Nevada, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Utah, Virginia, Washington and Wyoming, according to the CDC. The seven new cases reported Sunday were in states with previous illnesses, according to the FDA.