Officials have implemented a partial import ban on some cilantro from Mexico after unsanitary conditions were documented at farms and packing locations, including feces and toilet paper that were found in fields.
The cilantro in question was shipped out of the state of Puebla, Mexico, from April 1 through Aug. 31, according to an import alert that the Food and Drug Administration posted Monday. The herbs can't come into the United States without inspections, the alert states.
Cilantro from other parts of Mexico will need documentation to prove the product isn't from Puebla, about a two-hour drive southeast of Mexico City.
The cilantro is linked to outbreaks of cyclosporiasis, according to the alert. Last year, at least 304 people in the U.S. came down with the parasitic illness, which can cause diarrhea and explosive bowel movements, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The Associated Press also noted outbreaks from 2013 and 2014 in its report.
According to the FDA alert, authorities visited 11 cilantro farms and packing centers in Puebla. In the inspections, which date back to 2013, officials found "objectionable conditions" at eight locations.
The alert continues:
"Conditions observed at multiple such firms in the state of Puebla included human feces and toilet paper found in growing fields and around facilities; inadequately maintained and supplied toilet and hand washing facilities (no soap, no toilet paper, no running water, no paper towels) or a complete lack of toilet and hand washing facilities; food-contact surfaces (such as plastic crates used to transport cilantro or tables where cilantro was cut and bundled) visibly dirty and not washed; and water used for purposes such as washing cilantro vulnerable to contamination from sewage/septic systems."
The restaurant chain Chipotle doesn't use cilantro from Puebla, a spokesman told The Post in an e-mail. And Taco Bell Corp. said in an e-mail that its cilantro comes from California.