Authorities Find No Cases Linked to Fresh Express in Spinach Outbreak

World's Largest Salad-maker and Leader in Food Safety Will Resume Providing

American Consumers with a Variety of Fresh Packaged Spinach

Sep 29, 2006, 01:00 ET from Fresh Express

    SALINAS, Calif., Sept. 29 /PRNewswire/ -- Fresh Express, the No. 1
 salad maker in the world and the pioneer of the fresh-cut salad category,
 today announced that it will immediately begin to resume fresh spinach
 production following a statement issued by the U.S. Food and Drug
 Administration and the confirmation that no cases in the recent and tragic
 fresh spinach outbreak were epidemiologically linked to Fresh Express or
 its operations.
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     "We are grateful to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the U.S.
 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the State of California
 Department of Health Services for their tireless leadership in protecting
 the public health during this outbreak," said Fresh Express President
 Tanios Viviani. "Food safety has been and will always remain the number one
 priority throughout our company and in every single phase of our operation.
 It is gratifying that we can once again provide our loyal consumers and
 customers with fresh and safe ready-to-eat fresh Spinach products."
     The company confirmed that it will begin spinach production immediately
 and is expecting its fresh packaged Spinach to reach both retail and
 foodservice customers, and ultimately consumers, very soon.
     "From the moment news of the outbreak first reached us, we formed a
 specialized team to help support the government's investigation in any way
 we could," said Jim Lugg, Senior Vice President for Quality and Food
 Safety. 'In our industry, even a single consumer illness is one too many.
 We are making our proprietary and comprehensive field and manufacturing
 food safety protocols available to authorities as they continue to evaluate
 the standards that need to be adopted industrywide."
     Fresh Express has been a leader in fresh foods for more than 80 years
 and is dedicated to providing consumers with healthy, convenient
 ready-to-eat spinach, salads, vegetables and fruits. With the invention of
 its special Keep Crisp bag beginning in the early 1980's, Fresh Express
 pioneered the retail packaged salad category and was the first to make them
 available nationwide. Over 20 million consumers enjoy Fresh Express salads,
 Spinach and greens every week.
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SOURCE Fresh Express