The U.S. Ag Secretary says recent food-borne outbreaks — nationally from the Taco Bell chain and locally at a Taco John’s in Cedar Falls — are isolated instances. Ag Secretary Mike Johanns says the Food and Drug Administration is the lead federal agency involved in the Taco Bell situation.

“They’re tracing back to try to identify where the source is,” Johanns says. “I will also tell you what I believe is absolutely the case, and that is that the food supply in the United States is safe.” Executives with the Taco John’s chain announced yesterday that a possible E-coli outbreak may have occured at a Taco John’s in Albert Lea, Minnesota at the same time the outbreak happened at a Taco John’s in Cedar Falls.

“These incidents happen and get a lot of attention because quite honestly, it is not a daily and hourly incident that you deal with this kind of issue,” Johanns says.