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Source of Taco Bell E. coli Remains Elusive

An investigation of an E. Coli outbreak at Yum Brands' Taco Bell restaurants continued after federal health officials could not confirm green onions as the source of an E. coli outbreak that sickened 64 people who ate at the restaurant chain.

Taco Bell officials previously determined scallions as the source of the bacteria and removed them from the menu last week, but follow-up testing for E. coli was negative.


Meanwhile, New York health officials said a sample of white onions taken from a Taco Bell restaurant tested positive for E. coli, which is a sometimes fatal bacteria, often spread through contaminated food.

Overall, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has confirmed 64 E. coli cases, with the lion's share in New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania. Two E. coli cases have been confirmed in Delaware and one in South Carolina, where the person dined at a Taco Bell in Pennsylvania.

Meanwhile, nearly three dozen people have fallen ill with symptoms consistent with E. coli infection after eating at a Taco John's restaurant in Cedar Falls, Iowa. Authorities were also investigating a case where several people became ill after eating at a Taco John's in Albert Lea, Minn.

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