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Consumers still unsure about leafy greens

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NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. (AP) — September's national spinach recall has shaken consumer confidence in the safety of leafy green vegetables, according to a new national survey.

Consumers are still avoiding greens and questioning safety issues, months after spinach contaminated with E. coli bacteria killed three people and sickened nearly 200.

Plummeting spinach sales have also prompted the produce industry to seek federal oversight to assure buyers that fresh produce is safe.

"We need to be in front of this to maintain consumer confidence," said Tom Stenzel, president of the United Fresh Produce Association. "Consumers need to eat fresh produce and feel safe in their choices," he said.

A new national survey released today by Rutgers University suggests that the broad recall could have lasting effects on spinach and other similar vegetables.