The Canadian Food Inspection Agency is warning the public not to eat some types of Fresh Express brand romaine-based salads because they may be contaminated with E. coli.
The agency says the alert was initiated in response to a recall by the manufacturer, Fresh Express Incorporated, of Salinas, Calif.
The salads affected by the recall have "best before" dates of July 9 through July 12 and an "S" in the product code. The "use-by" date is located on the upper right-hand corner of the package and the product code is immediately underneath it.
The products are known to have been distributed in Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, Ontario and Quebec and may have been distributed nationally.
Food contaminated with E. coli O157 may not look or smell spoiled, but the bacterium can trigger serious and potentially life-threatening illnesses. Symptoms include severe abdominal pain and bloody diarrhea. Some infected people may have seizures or strokes and may need blood transfusions and kidney dialysis. In some cases, permanent kidney damage ensues.
So far there have been no reported illnesses linked to consumption of the salads in Canada.
A complete list of the recalled products can be found at: http://www.inspection.gc.ca/english/corpaffr/recarapp/2010/20100714e .shtml.