2008-07-08 06:46:01 GMT 2008-07-08 14:46:01 (Beijing Time) Xinhua English
BEIJING, July 8 (Xinhuanet)-- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is expanding the testing of food beyond tomatoes to find the source of the salmonella outbreak that has sickened at least 943 people in 40 states and Washington, D.C.
Although tomatoes are still the "lead suspect," the administration is now looking at other produce, its spokesman said on Monday.
Investigators suggest jalapeno peppers could be the source, though they're also looking at other ingredients used to make salsa like cilantro and Serrano peppers.
The administration hasn't made any recommendations about eating -- or avoiding -- cilantro, jalapeno peppers, and Serrano peppers. For now, its advice to consumers is still all about tomatoes.
The outbreak has hit Texas the hardest with 356 people falling ill from the bacteria.
Since the first cases of salmonella were reported on April 10, 130 people have been hospitalized for treatment of the illness.