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Thea Bourianne

By: Thea Bourianne on November 20th, 2018

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Data Bite: Why you shouldn't eat romaine lettuce (again)


You might've thought you were in the clear to eat romaine lettuce after the scare this past summer. Nope – scratch salad off the list of dishes you're planning to serve, or to bring if you're the guest. Here's why.

According to the Washington Post, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has deemed romaine lettuce "unsafe to eat in any form" due to another E. coli outbreak. The CDC's advice: throw out any you've bought that's still in your house, don't purchase any until further notice, and don't consume it any form.

Our data team reports there are 1,152 active products that are either pure romaine lettuce or have romaine as an ingredient. Some common categories include prepared salads and packaged lettuce, but also there are 70 juice products and seven drink products -- who knew?

Two more obvious sources are prepared sandwiches and wraps, which account for about 60 products containing romaine lettuce. And of those 1,152 products, only 216 are organic. 

We'll have to find another way to squeeze something healthy onto our plates this Thanksgiving. Oh, and are you aware of how much sugar is likely to be on your plate?


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About Thea Bourianne

Thea Bourianne, MBA, RD, LDN is a licensed and registered dietitian based in Chicago. Specializing in nutrition, US and international food regulation, and food composition makes her uniquely positioned to work strategically with global CPG and retail clients to build data-driven, customer-centric solutions. In her current role at Label Insight, a SaaS company that provides insights on food label data, Bourianne supports retailers, CPG brands, US government, technology companies, researchers, and other entities by crafting and applying high order attribution to products in-store and online. Bourianne is passionate about safe, transparent, sustainable, wholesome products and strides for best-in-class customer experiences to make the healthy choice the easy choice. Prior to working at Label Insight, Bourianne’s previous positions have included product development, commercialization, fresh and frozen food manufacturing, and regulatory affairs with companies and clients such as Taco Bell Corp., Wilton Brands, Starbucks, Ahold, Walgreens and 7-Eleven, among others.