E. coli Outbreak

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If you're planning on heading to any one of the local Meijers looking to buy fresh spinach, you may want to rethink that idea and instead load up on another vegetable. Because according to Meijer Store Manager Fred Silva, you won't find any of the leafy greens anywhere on the produce aisle.

"We just feel it's better to be safe than sorry. We just went through as a company and decided until we get final detailed information, we're going to pull it off the shelves."

"There are three cases in the state. We have one in Ingham County , and fortunately the case we did have in Ingham County that person has gotten better."

The case Dr. Dean Sienko of the Ingham County Health Department is talking about is E. coli. According to the FDA, an outbreak of E. coli has sickened at least 60 people in ten different states. While the exact cause is unknown, Dr. Sienko says the main suspect is bagged, raw spinach.

"This particular type of E. coli is known as O157:H7. It's a particulary threatening sub-type of E. coli, and it can lead to bloody diarrhea and some more serious complications."

While the FDA is recommending people throw away pre-packaged spinach. If you still feel the need to eat it, the Michigan Department of Community Health advises running it under warm water. However if you wash the spinach, it isn't a guarantee.

So Silva says, "If a customer feels uncomfortable with the fresh spinach they purchased, no questions asked, they can go to the courtesy desk and get a refund."

If you have recently eaten raw, pre-packaged spinach and have become ill, contact your local health department immediately.