December 6, 2006
Taco Bell Removes Green Onions From Menu
SOUTH PLAINFIELD, N.J. - Taco Bell on Wednesday ordered the removal of green onions from its 5,800 restaurants nationwide after samples appeared to have a harsh strain of E. coli.
The Irvine, Calif.-based company, whose restaurants were linked to a recent outbreak of E. coli in three states, said preliminary testing by an independent lab found positive results for the strain.
"In an abundance of caution, we've decided to pull all green onions from our restaurants until we know conclusively whether they are the cause of the E. coli outbreak," Greg Creed, Taco Bell president, said in a statement.
Taco Bell said that the tests are not conclusive, but that it immediately notified health authorities and its restaurants while it awaits a final analysis.
Health officials have not yet been able to pinpoint the source of the bacteria that has sickened at least three dozen people in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Nine people remained hospitalized in New York and New Jersey, including an 11-year-old boy in stable condition with kidney damage.