Well, as you might imagine, more people are getting sick. No new deaths yet, that I'm aware of, but the death of the spinach industry appears immenint. A Harrisburg, Pennsylvania spinach processing plant laid off a number of its workers, and Canada (prudent as usual) has banned all US spinach imports.
You'd think that with spinach consumption now at an all time low, the cases of E. coli wouldn't still be skyrocketing. The Ethicurean has a few ideas on whats up:
"We’ve been eating leafy greens for thousands of years straight from the fields, but only from special prewashed, gas-infused salad bags for under 30. First of all, when’s the last time you heard about a nationwide E. coli outbreak caused by a farmers market? More importantly, it seems to me, is that when a farmer looks you in the eye and takes your cash for her spinach, she has a personal incentive not to make you sick. Underpaid factory workers who can’t even afford to buy the organic spinach they’re bagging? Less so."So if he's right, and all this E. coli is comming from a processing plant itself and not from cow shit left on a spinach patch, then the outbreak could be due to any number of other highly-processed vegetable items. Which would explain why it's not slowing down.
Personally, I'd stay away from any bagged vegetable item. Only buy fresh produce, and wash the hell out of it before you eat it. And if you are under 5 or over 75, don't even risk it. Keep eating your mush, or E. coli won't just give you the squirts, it will kill you.