5 Minnesotans fall ill in connection to national E. coli outbreak linked to salad kits

LEFT: The front, outer packaging of the Fresh Express Sunflower Crisp chopped salad kit which has been linked to an E. Coli outbreak. RIGHT: Identifying information for the salad kits can be found on the front of the bag in the top right corner.

Minnesota Department of Health officials confirm five Minnesotans are among those who have fallen ill due to an E. coli outbreak linked to Fresh Express Sunflower Crisp Chopped Salad Kits.

In total, health official have confirmed nine cases nationwide, according to the MDH and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In addition to Minnesota, there are reported cases in Wisconsin and North Dakota.

Authorities are telling consumers to not eat or sell Fresh Express Sunflower Crisp Chopped Salad Kits with an identifying code of UPC 0 71279 30906 4, beginning with lot code Z, and a best-before date up to and including 07DEC19. People are being asked to throw out the salad kit if it is in their fridge.

MDH investigators say the Minnesotans fell ill between November 8 and November 16. Their ages ranged between 21 to 91 years old. Two of the Minnesotans were hospitalized. Four are from the Twin Cities metro area, while one is from Greater Minnesota.

Romaine lettuce is one of the ingredients in the salad kits, but at this time it is unclear if this outbreak is linked to the outbreak connected to romaine lettuce grown in the Salinas, California region.

For more information about the outbreak linked to the salad kits, click here.