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From A Victim’s Perspective

Jim Prevor’s Perishable Pundit, January 5, 2007

Over the holiday the Contra Costa Times ran a profile looking at the spinach/E. coli crisis from the perspective of a woman who got very sick and almost died during the crisis. It is entitled California Produce Now Crop of Concern,and is quite poignant. It also points to how continued consumer concern over produce safety may impact future sales:

All this has prompted growers and politicians to advocate stricter farming practices and better enforcement of existing rules. But substantial changes are years away. In fact, many food safety experts suggest that irradiation is the only way to destroy harmful bacteria in raw produce. The food industry has resisted the process because of the controversy over irradiated foods.

So salad lovers like Lisa Brott will never get 100 percent guarantees.

“There’s no one silver bullet,” Aguirre says. “You have to put a series of interventions in place and a series of steps to control and reduce your risk. And that’s what we’ve done.”

That’s not enough for Brott. Health officials say spinach is now safe to eat, but she wants to hear that more is being done.

“It’s scary,” she said “It doesn’t make me comfortable at all.”

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