D’oh: Lab Error Led to New Hampshire-Grown Lettuce Recall
A voluntary recall of lettuce grown in New Hampshire because of possible e.Coli contamination was the result of a lab error and has been dropped.
The voluntary recall was prompted by a sample of a specific lot of lēf Farms “Spice” Packaged Salad Greens produced at their Loudon greenhouse, according to the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services.
Subsequent whole genome sequencing was conducted, which determined that the control sample and the lēf Farms sample were nearly identical, indicating that the initial lab results were inaccurate due to a contamination error within the lab itself. All product is safe and does not need to be returned. The recalled product will be back on shelves at Market Basket.
“I wish to apologize to lēf Farms, their customers and the public for this unfortunate event,” said Division of Public Health Services (DPHS) Director Tricia Tilley said in a statement. “lēf Farms’ quick and decisive actions put the health of their customers first. Their products are safe for consumers. We appreciate that lēf Farms has been a willing partner in this process."
Tille said the agency's staff will embrace all corrective actions to ensure the error is not repeated.
Shawn Jasper, State Commissioner of Agriculture, Markets and Food, praised lēf Farms' response.
“After a two-day inspection of lēf Farms’ facility and products, what we discovered was a company that operates at the highest level of food safety and integrity. We are working closely with the FDA and lēf Farms to make this right," Jasper said in a statement.