BY MEGAN MAHEDY
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported on Dec. 4 that the Chipotle E. Coli outbreak has officially spread into three more states: Maryland, Illinois, and Pennsylvania.
Salisbury University junior D.J. McHugh expressed his concern about eating at Chipotle in Maryland.
“Since it was an isolated incident, but now has spread to Maryland, I currently do not feel safe eating Chipotle here in Maryland,” McHugh said.
There has been 52 reported cases of illness due to the E. coli outbreak nationwide. Beginning on October 31, there has been nine states reporting infection: Oregon, Washington, California, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, and most recently, Maryland, Illinois, and Pennsylvania.
According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, symptoms of E. coli infection include vomiting, severe abdominal cramps, diarrhea, fatigue, and a fever.
According to the CDC, most of the illnesses have been reported in Oregon and Washington, where 43 restaurants have closed for further investigation. The CDC has not yet determined the ingredient that made people sick.
Chipotle released that the chain would be tightening its food safety standards. They said it will implement testing of all produce before it is shipped to restaurants and enhance employee training for food safety and handling. Chipotle said it tested ingredients before, but that it is moving to testing smaller batches and a larger number of samples.
When cooking at home, to help avoid food poisoning and prevent infection, handle food safely. Cook meat well, wash fruits and vegetables before eating or cooking them, and avoid unpasteurized milk and juices. You can also get the infection by swallowing water in a swimming pool contaminated with human waste.