Businesses, Shoppers Affected by Romaine Lettuce Warning

BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Romaine lettuce is one item that should not be any part of your Thanksgiving meal this year.

The government put out a warning about romaine lettuce possibly being contaminated after 13 people in 11 states were hospitalized.

Grocery stores including Gerrity's, Boyer's, Giant, and Weis have already removed their selection of romaine lettuce.

It was a busy day at Berrigan's Sub Shop in downtown Bloomsburg. Steaks were on the grill, sandwiches were being fixed up, but one ingredient was left out of orders -- romaine lettuce.

"That is the base for all of our salads, so all of the salads start with that, so today we are asking customers if iceberg lettuce is OK," Matt Pruchnik said.

The Centers for Disease Control says romaine lettuce may be tainted with E. coli bacteria that can cause severe digestive issues. The CDC recommends throwing away any romaine lettuce you have and sanitizing your refrigerator.

The owner of the sub shop got rid of his romaine once he heard about the warning.

"For us, we feel that romaine is a lot better and we did not have a lot left because Sysco was delivering a case to use today so they canceled that order, so it did save us on cost this time," Pruchnik said.

Berrigan's subs ended up throwing away 10 to 15 heads of romaine lettuce. Shoppers we spoke to were disappointed when they had to throw out their bags right before Thanksgiving.

"Just threw a brand-new bag," Wayne Sitler said. "We just brought out when the alert came out two days ago, threw it out."

"Our family likes to have a salad. We try to be health conscious and it is disappointing we can't do it this year," Matthew Hetherington said.

"I've got three teenage boys who love salad and we eat it quite a bit. With all of the things going on with the romaine lettuce, we've had to substitute other things," said Ginny Spangenberg.