Days have passed since news of the nationwide bagged spinach recall, but the number of E. coli cases still grows. The FDA reports more than 100 cases throughout the US. And as the outbreak continues, Lansing-area shoppers are still on guard.
"I was kind of shocked," says George Baisley of DeWitt, who was shopping Sunday morning at Horrocks. "But I did what [the FDA] told me to do, I got rid of all our spinach."
"You have to take precautions," adds Lansing shopper Bob Politi.
There have been six reported cases of E. coli in Michigan due to the bagged spinach. That has forced some local grocery stores like Horrocks to become extra cautious with their produce.
"We are absolutely staying in touch with the health department and the federal government if there's going to be any other products that are going to be removed," says Ruth Ann Collier, Horrocks store manager.
Horrocks has had no reports of sickness from spinach, and the only fatality has been in Wisconsin. The store removed all spinach from the aisle last week and Collier says Horrocks has no plans yet for its return.
"When it comes back on the market, we would make sure it's safe before we'd ever put it back on the shelves," she says.
Officials have pointed to Natural Food Selections LLC as one source of the bad spinach, but they're still investigating. Even when spinach makes it back to the stores, shoppers still may be leery.
"I'm going to be more mindful of where [the spinach] comes from," shopper Baisley says. "We have in the past tried to wash it, but we'll definitely do that this time."
That's the best advice even the experts can give: Continue washing all produce thoroughly and stay away from spinach, bagged or not, until further notice.