For additional information, please see "Taylor Farms keeps operating through cyclospora investigation"

Taylor Farms suspends Mexican operations linked to cyclosporaTaylor Farms has voluntarily stopped production and shipment of all salad mixes, leafy greens or salad mix components from its operations in Mexico to the U.S. until further notice, according to the Food and Drug Administration.

Foodservice packages of salad mix from Taylor Farms de Mexico, S. de R.L. de C.V., San Miguel, have been linked to some of the illnesses in an 18-state outbreak of infections from the cyclospora parasite.

“This decision allows Taylor Farms de Mexico to focus more resources on assisting the FDA in their investigation of the June cyclospora outbreak,” according to a notice on the Salinas, Calif., company’s website.

“To maintain supply for our customers, Taylor Farms has shifted production of salad mix and leafy greens to domestic crops and processing facilities in California, Colorado, Texas, Tennessee, Florida and Maryland. We expect the suspension of salad products to last several weeks. The production of broccoli products will continue in Mexico as broccoli is not subject to this investigation.”

As of Aug. 9, there were 535 confirmed cyclospora infections in 18 states, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The agency reported 32 patients had required hospitalization because of the infections. CDC and FDA continue to warn that there may be other sources of the cyclospora parasite that have not yet been identified.

Taylor Farms suspends Mexican operations linked to cyclosporaEven though the implicated salad mix has been out of the supply chain since late June, the illness count continues to increase on a daily basis as sick people seek treatment and are diagnosed. The parasite infections cause symptoms that last up to three months in healthy people and up to a year in elderly or immune compromised people who do not seek treatment.

Iowa and Nebraska health officials linked cyclospora infections in their states to salad mix distributed by Taylor Farms to Red Lobster and Olive Garden restaurants in their states.

Bruce Taylor, chief executive officer at Taylor Farms, said Aug. 8 that the salad mix had been sent to thousands of restaurants via 14 distributors. He said the salad mix containing iceberg and romaine lettuce, red cabbage and carrots went to all of the states that reported cyclospora infections, as well as other states.

The FDA has consistently said Taylor Farms is cooperating with the investigation.

“This voluntary action goes beyond the implicated salad mix and includes iceberg lettuce, romaine lettuce, green leaf lettuce, red cabbage, green cabbage and carrots,” the FDA’s Aug. 12 update states. “The action of Taylor Farms de Mexico exemplifies the company’s cooperation with federal and state officials throughout this ongoing, complicated investigation.”