Spinach (and E. Coli?) in the Trash

(Update: Latest FDA release now warns against all fresh spinach, not just bagged.)

Thanks, US Food Industry!

Spinach ties with broccoli for my most favoritest vegetable, but I had to throw out this unopened bag the very next day after buying it at Whole Foods, due to the whole E. coli scare.

Thanks a lot, Natural Selection Foods! They’re the people behind Earthbound Farm, and suppliers of leafy greens to a whole spectrum of bagged vegetable lines which wouldn’t otherwise admit the connection, except now to distance their brands from association with the infection. Sample press releases to that effect, for example, from Dole, Whole Foods, and Ready Pac. (The latter being the brand I’ve thrown out, even though they claim another product uses EBFarm spinach and not this one.) More on the E. Coli scare from Time Magazine’s Alica Park: How Ready-to-Eat Spinach Is Only Part of the E. Coli Problem.

These outbreaks, warns Doyle, are an inevitable by-product of the way that many fruit and vegetable manufacturers have streamlined their production — and cut costs — by doing some of the processing of their ready-to-eat produce right in the fields, and not in the more controlled atmosphere of a factory. He sees it as a dangerous practice that could contribute to contamination.

So, many thanks to the US factory farming food industry for this. In your quest for the holy “faster cheaper more more more” culture of modern consumerism, you’ve managed to risk getting manure germs in my salad. On the bright side, so far my spinach has remained free of frog.