The family of a Canadian woman who died from an E. coli infection filed suit against producer grower Tanimura & Antle last week in U.S. District Court in California, alleging her death was caused in part by the consumption of contaminated lettuce sold by the company. According to court documents, prior to falling ill with fatigue, nausea and bloody diarrhea during the last week of August, 2012, Gail Bernacki of Calgary had consumed a Tanimura & Antle lettuce product that was contaminated with E. coli O157:H7. Bernacki was allegedly taken by ambulance to Rockyview General Hospital for treatment on August 25.  While there, she submitted a stool sample that returned positive for E. coli O157:H7. The complaint states that subsequent analysis of the E. coli O157:H7 bacteria isolated from her stool showed that it was a genetic match to E. coli O157:H7 bacteria isolated from a sample of Tanimura & Antle romaine lettuce that triggered the Canadian Food Inspection Agency to issue a “Health Hazard Alert” on August 17 and an expanded alert on August 20. While she was able to return home by the end of Spetember, the court documents state that Bernacki was re-admitted to the hospital for medical care for congestive heart failure and failure to thrive in January, 2013.  The lawsuit alleges that her original E. coli O157:H7 infection contributed to her decline and, ultimately, her death on January 16, 2013. “Although growers of leafy greens have made huge strides in food safety since the E. coli outbreak of 2006,” said Bill Marler, attorney for the Bernacki family and publisher of Food Safety News, “this case shows that there is more to do.”