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02-06-2016, 07:23 AM   #1
Catherine
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Packaged lettuce leaves

Currently major food poisoning here in Australia link to packaged lettuce leaves and associated products.

Are whole lettuce products safer, I think they would be.

The grocery council is trying to there is a higher risk from washing lettuce products in the home kitchen due cross contamination.
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Mother of Sarah dx aged 16, Jan 2012
DX - CD 1/12, asthma
Small bowel to small bowel fistula

Meds: ), azathioprine 200mg, Mesalazine 1.2g x 2, seretide 250 x 2 (asthma), ventolin (as needed)

Currently no supplements.

Has previously taken Multi B, Caltrate, B12 & Iron

Prednisolone (from 30 mg 01/02/2012 to 17/06/2012, 30mg 24/10/12-28/12/12, 50mg 24/1/13-27/4/13)
02-06-2016, 08:04 AM   #2
my little penguin
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What ???
That makes no sense
You can buy whole lettuce here straight from the ground or salad mixes woth all the prep
The salad mixed tend to have more of a problem
Especially spinach for some reason
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02-06-2016, 08:50 AM   #3
D Bergy
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Two out of three times,that I have had E-Coli has likely been from lettuce. Both times from restaurants food.

Any vegetable that grows near the surface of the soil can easily have this. Thats why apples that have fallen to the ground are not used in store bought apples.

Most people do not just wash lettuce when they get it, they remove the outer leaves, which takes care of the bulk of the contamination. Lettuce in a bag is a potential petri dish of bacteria as every bit of the lettuce is exposed to the rest. In a head of lettuce most of the head is buried under the outer layers.

The grocery council is making a bogus claim and it doesn't take much more than common sense to see that

Dan
02-06-2016, 10:54 AM   #4
CrohnsKidMom
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I have heard (and I can't remember where, or if it was from a reliable source), that prewashed greens and/or washing them at home doesn't get rid of much E. coli bacteria. Apparently if it is contaminated, the bacteria is not just on the surface of the leaves, but IN it. Can anyone confirm/discredit this?
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02-07-2016, 01:28 AM   #5
DustyKat
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Pre-packaged salad greens have a higher risk of contamination.

Fresh, as in non packaged, is safer but all fruit and veg should be washed before use. Whole lettuce should have the outer leaves removed and then the remaining thoroughly washed and drained. What you donít use within 24 hours needs to be rewashed again before use. These are standard guidelines and for vulnerable populations, such those in aged care facilities, pre-schools, kindergartens etc and hospitals staff are required to wash and sanitise fresh produce.

The problem with the home kitchen is if you use the same sink to wash your fresh produce as you do for all your other kitchen activities, that is where the cross contamination comes in. If you donít have a separate sink then you need to thoroughly cleanse it before washing your fruit and veg.
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02-07-2016, 05:27 AM   #6
Catherine
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Thank you everyone for confirming what I already know whole lettuce is safer.

The issue with lettuce leaves is Salmonella.
02-07-2016, 09:35 AM   #7
Eridon2002
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I have heard (and I can't remember where, or if it was from a reliable source), that prewashed greens and/or washing them at home doesn't get rid of much E. coli bacteria. Apparently if it is contaminated, the bacteria is not just on the surface of the leaves, but IN it. Can anyone confirm/discredit this?
E.Coli and Salmonella are animal pathogens and do not infect plants. They can not pass through the cell wall so will only be on the surface of the leaves and not in them.

Buying the whole salad green/lettuce and then washing thoroughly is lower risk than the prepackaged greens. I grew lettuce in my garden last year and it was delicious. I mostly had to wash them to get rid of the aphids, although that is extra protein in my salad
02-07-2016, 11:15 AM   #8
Eridon2002
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CrohnsKidMom-I found this below which is probably what you were referring to in regards to being in the leaf. The leaf can become infected by a cut from a contaminated knife.

ďData suggests that bacteria (Salmonella and E. coli) can enter wounds, such as the harvesting cut, and travel some distance into a leaf. But fresh produce thatís harvested as a head has longer leaves and is more mature,Ē she says. ďA consumer has the opportunity to remove part of the head away from the harvest cut and eat leaves in which a pathogen did not reside in the harvest wound.Ē
02-07-2016, 01:39 PM   #9
Tesscorm
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Thanks for starting this thread Catherine. My daughter always buys the packaged lettuce/salads, and I have to admit that I have at times as well... but it has ALWAYS worried me. Even though I always wash even the prewashed. In the last couple of weeks, we've also had all the packaged brands removed from stores due to contamination.
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02-07-2016, 07:32 PM   #10
CrohnsKidMom
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So, this now begs the question, how does one go about buying spinach?
02-08-2016, 11:56 AM   #11
Grumbletum
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Following with interest. We have CITYMART here which has lots of Australian produce including salads
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