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Investigators Hot on Jalapeno's Trail

Investigators Hot on Jalapeno's Trail

Jalapeno peppers have been pinned as a target for further inspection after officials discovered a bacteria strain in the pepper, making the spicy buggers the lead culprit in the nationwide salmonella outbreak.
 
After weeks of pinning the blame on tomatoes as the cause of illness in more than 1,000 people, health officials finally deemed them as safe last week, leading investigators to tail a new suspect. But the end is not near quite yet: Investigators say they are still trying to figure out where the pepper may have become infected. A variety of sources are being considered, including the Mexican farm where the pepper was grown, and a Texas plant where the jalapenos were handled and washed.
 
This evidence also does not completely put tomatoes in the free and clear. While investigators cannot trace anything back to the juicy, red fruit, tomatoes that were sold earlier this spring are still thought to be a possible offender.
 
But officials are saying that the jalapeno discovery is a huge break in the case.
 
Well, we can only hope so because, boy, are we a bit tired of this chase. [MSNBC]

Posted: 7/22/08