These tainted tomatoes and even the spinach-E. coli outbreak have seriously whacked U.S. consumer-confidence. Reuters reports:
"Food in the U.S. is all kinds of unsafe," said Arjuna Balasooriya, 35, on Tuesday as he left lunch at a Souplantation in the Los Angeles suburb of Pasadena, which closed for a week last year due to a Shigella bacteria outbreak.Hooray for Chipotle, a DiseaseProof favorite. But clearly, U.S. food producers and growers must clean up their act.
"You're always running scared," wondering whether the food is contaminated by bacteria, genetically modified or sourced from areas with poor health and safety records, he said.
Like many other people who spoke with Reuters on Tuesday, the banker said he is not buying or eating tomatoes following news that an outbreak of a rare strain of Salmonella had sickened 145 people who ate round, Roma or plum tomatoes.
"I'll wait for a while for the air to clear up to be safe, at least a month," he said, even though the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has identified California and 25 other tomato-supplying states and countries as not being associated with the outbreak.
McDonald's Corp, the world's biggest restaurant chain, has pulled raw sliced tomatoes from its sandwiches and has no immediate plans to bring them back.
Chipotle Mexican Grill, on the other hand, is making plans to start returning safely sourced tomatoes to its restaurants later this week.