Attack of the Gives-You-The-Runs Tomatoes

The Civee and I went to have lunch at a nearby place we frequent.  One of their specials on Sundays is usually a BLT with Chicken Lemon Rice soup.  But today, it was different. The Chicken Lemon Rice soup was served with a “Bacon and lettuce sandwich.”


If you’ve been to a restaurant or grocery store recently, you may have noticed a lack of fresh tomatoes on sale or used in dishes.

Turns out, some salmonella-tainted tomatoes grown in two states have made some people sick and started a nationwide scare resulting in most food merchants ceasing the use of fresh tomatoes all together.  But the FDA lists 46 states, countries, or provinces that are sources of safe tomatoes.  Regardless, most vendors are overreacting and pulling tomatoes from everything for fear of being sued by someone who just happens to get an upset tummy and decides to place the blame on the store or restaurant being irresponsible.

While at lunch a few days ago, I was talking with someone in the produce distribution business. He said the problem wasn’t in the tomatoes, but in the way restaurants handled them. If there’s some e. coli or salmonella on a fruit or vegetable, it can be removed by washing it.  But a lot of places don’t wash their produce properly.

So for the next few weeks, until all settles down, things at restaurants will taste different. The true victims of this outbreak are those of us who enjoy fresh tomatoes.


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