Taco Bell e.Coli Update

Health officials may be getting closer to pinpointing the exact cause and location of the e.Coli outbreak at Taco Bell restaurants in eight states.

Green onions from a California farm may be to blame for making dozens of people sick.

Federal investigators say the green onions suspected in the e.Coli outbreak may have come from a southern California farm.

The vegetable distribution company for Taco Bell said it supplied the scallions for restaurants in the eight states where nearly 90 cases of illnesses have surfaced in the past two weeks.

The latest cases are in South Carolina and Utah.

Earlier this week as a precaution, the fast-food chain pulled green onions from its restaurants.

The latest e.Coli scare is the third major illness outbreak linked to produce since September.

The center for science in the public interest, best known as the food police, said produce-related illnesses are on the rise.

Caroline Smith-Dewwaal of the Center for Science in the Public Interest, stated, "Each year it is causing more illnesses linked to outbreaks than any other cause like more than beef, more than poultry, more than seafood."

Last month the watch dog group petitioned the FDA to mandate control of manure, ensure the use of safe water, and provide adequate sanitation facilities for farm workers.

Three major ways the potentially deadly bacteria can spread.

Smith-Dewwaal added, "If we can prevent sewage and manure from contaminating food crops, we could eliminate a lot of these produce outbreaks."

The recent outbreak began at a string of Taco Bell restaurants in New Jersey and spread to other northeast states.

Federal investigators have yet to conclude green onions are to blame.


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