Health Canada is linking a Canadian outbreak of salmonella infections to imported, American-grown red onions.
Until officials know more about what is going on stateside, you’re being asked to avoid eating, handling or buying red onions from the U.S.
Since July 24, the agency says at least 55 people across five provinces, including Ontario, have gotten sick.
The warning also covers American red onions that are sold and distributed in B.C., Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba.
Restaurants and food service operations are being told to throw away any red onions that may originate south of the border.
It’s important to note that no Canadian-grown onions are affected.
In addition to avoiding U.S. red onions, you’re also asked to stay away from products that contain raw red onions, like salads, which originated in the states.
As the investigation continues, Health Canada says more sources of salmonella may be identified and they’ll update their advice accordingly.
If you’re shopping for red onions, the agency says you should check the label. If there isn’t one, don’t buy it.
You can ask your grocer where the onions came from if it isn’t listed anywhere in-store.
If you have any of the affected onions at home, throw them out. Make sure to wash and sanitize any drawers or places you kept the onions.
When you go to a restaurant, Health Canada suggests asking staff where they get their onions. If they’re not sure, it’s best to avoid them to be safe.
Restaurant operators and owners should also be aware that some of the affected onions were shipped by Sysco, so you’re encouraged to follow up with them if they’re one of your suppliers.