Processed meats trigger listeriosis outbreak

2018-03-07 06:00

SUPERMARKETS, stores and spaza shops throughout Umvoti have responded to the national recall of Enterprise and some Rainbow processed meat products from their shelves.

This followed Sunday’s announcement by the national Minister of Health, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi that tests had confirmed that the source of the Listeriosis outbreak, which had led to the deaths of 180 people, was the Enterprise factory in Polokwane. Further tests were being carried out on another Enterprise factory and Rainbow chicken facility in the Free State. Since last year hundreds of people have contracted the disease - the majority in Gauteng, Western Cape and KZN third with the number of cases. From July last year the total number of infections stands at 915.

Symptons include fever, muscle aches, nausea and sometimes diarrhea. The majority affected recover within seven days but those with a compromised immune system due to HIV/TB, the elderly, pregnant women, infants are more vulnerable.

TO PREVENT THE DISEASE:

>> Keep raw and cooked meat separately

>>Wash hands thoroughly before handling food

>>Make sure cutting boards,cutlery and crockery are properly cleaned

>> Cook chicken, meat and eggs thoroughly

Local stockists told the Greytown Gazette that the Enterprise processed meats, which included Bokkie, Renown, Mieliekip ,and other products identified as possible carriers were taken off the shelves as soon as the news broke.

These food items have been bagged sealed and reportedly will be collected by special transport arranged by Enterprise and Rainbow. Customers who have already bought these products should take them back to the retail outlet where bought, for a refund. The Minister, and the National Institute of Communicable Diseases have instructed the manufacturers to come up with a recall plan that covers their entire distribution chain -locally and internationally.

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