- Jimmy John’s has been asked by the Illinois public health department to cut sprouts from the menu after a food poisoning outbreak.
- There have been at least 30 food poisoning outbreaks related to sprouts over the last two decades.
- A food poisoning expert says sprouts are high on his list of foods to avoid.
Jimmy John’s is being asked to cut sprouts from the menu after a food poisoning outbreak.
The Illinois Department of Public Health has asked the sandwich chain to stop serving alfalfa sprouts in the state until an investigation of a recent salmonella food poisoning outbreak is complete. So far, two people have reported becoming ill after eating at Jimmy John’s in late December.
Jimmy John’s announced on Friday that it had directed all locations across the US to temporarily stop serving sprouts “as a precautionary measure.”
While many types of fresh produce carry risks of spreading bacteria if they aren’t properly cleaned, sprouts are particularly risky because they need warm and humid conditions to grow – just like bacteria. According to a government food safety website, there have been at least 30 food poisoning outbreaks linked to sprouts since 1996.
According to Bill Marler, a food poisoning attorney with two decades of experience, sprouts are one of the top items he has banned from his diet.
“There have been too many outbreaks to not pay attention to the risk of sprout contamination,” Marler says. “Those are products that I just don’t eat at all.”