Jimmy John’s has removed the menu outbreaks in all of its restaurants after receiving an FDA warning letter on Tuesday that links several E. coli outbreaks with the sandwich chain.
The Food and Drug Administration, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and state and local health officials have been investigating outbreaks, according to the letter, which accuses the chain of participating in a pattern of reception and sale of “adulterated fresh products, specifically clover sprouts and cucumbers.”
Frank Yiannas, deputy commissioner of the FDA for food policy and response, said in a statement that outbreaks occurred in the last seven years and affected consumers “in no less than 17 states.”
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“Jimmy John has not demonstrated the implementation of long-term sustainable corrections in his supply chain to ensure the safety of the ingredients used in his products,” said Yiannas. “Americans expect the food they eat to be safe. We will hold companies accountable when they do not take appropriate measures to ensure the safety of the food they provide. “
In a statement sent to USA TODAY, Jimmy John President James North said the outbreaks have been removed from restaurants across the country until further notice.
“This removal was a precaution and was not initiated by any known immediate threat,” North said.
The FDA also issued a warning letter to Sprouts Unlimited Wholesale Foods “for supplying outbreaks to Jimmy John’s who made 22 people sick in November and December 2019.”
Sprouts Unlimited, based in Marion, Iowa, did not immediately respond to USA TODAY’s request for comment.
Follow USA TODAY reporter Kelly Tyko on Twitter: @KellyTyko