UK reveals more sick in multi-country Salmonella outbreak

Food Safety News

The number of patients in a Salmonella outbreak in the United Kingdom has increased to more than 130.

It was previously reported that 81 people were sick in the UK as part of a multi-country Salmonella Mbandaka outbreak. As of early March, there are 132 UK cases, according to the Food Standards Agency (FSA).

Whole genome sequencing confirmed a microbiological link between ready-to-cook chicken breast manufactured in Ukraine, and cases in Finland, Estonia, and the UK. The chicken was supplied to the UK from Ukraine via the Netherlands, and a company in the Netherlands has recalled products sent to the UK. All items were for food service use and have been withdrawn from the UK market.

In May 2022, the UK reported 31 Salmonella Mbandaka cases with 25 from England and three each in Scotland and Wales with sample dates between Sept. 2021 and April 2022. Four were admitted to the hospital and one person died.

As of late 2022, Finland had 89 cases while a few patients also lived in the Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Germany, Ireland, the Netherlands, and Israel. Cases occurred in all age groups.

Ready-to-eat (RTE) chicken products or fresh chicken meat, such as those used in sandwiches and wraps, were said to be the likely vehicles of infection, according to an assessment by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC).

Finnish officials linked the suspected RTE products to an Estonian company, which received processed chicken meat from different suppliers.

ECDC said epidemiological data and microbiological evidence from whole genome sequencing of human isolates indicated there were several sources through different distribution chains.

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