Texas Part of Salmonella Outbreak; Locals React

By: Meredith Stancik Email
By: Meredith Stancik Email

Health officials have urged people in Texas not to eat certain raw tomatoes because of a multi-state outbreak of Salmonella. Texas has 21 confirmed cases.

With the latest food scare, restaurants and grocery stores are acting quickly to make sure their customers stay safe.

At Mr. G's Pizzeria tomatoes are a main ingredient.

"I use fresh tomatoes mostly and if there is any problem with tomatoes we have to just stop doing my fresh sauce," Giovanni Cerone said.

However, without the sauce the Italian eatery's pizzas would lose their appeal.

"We had the same scare for spinach and we had to go sometimes without spinach," Cerone said. "Now tomatoes will be a little bit more affected in my business because every pizza should have sauce on it."

So far Mr. G's says it has not been affected by the latest food recall.

Apple Tree in Bryan took tomatoes off its shelves Wednesday, but its produce provider says they're fine to eat. Tomatoes are back out, but the grocery store has signs posted warning its customers to eat at their own risk.

State health officials are urging consumers in Texas and New Mexico to not eat most raw Roma or full-sized round tomatoes. Just those attached to the vine or grown at home.

Recalls have made for a busy couple of years for the produce industry. Grocery stores and restaurants like Mr G's say they're hoping for a break.

Subway has taken tomatoes off its menu and Taco Bell is asking each customer if they want tomatoes included with their meal.

Seven people in Texas had to be hospitalized because of the salmonella outbreak, but no deaths have been reported.

Foodborne illnesses are becoming more prevalent.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, they cause about 76 million illnesses and 5,000 deaths in the United States every year.

For more information on the Salmonella outbreak, click on the link below.

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