Category Archives: Clostridium perfringens

Information – Advice CDC – Do not rinse chicken!


Americans eat more chicken every year than any other meat. Chicken can be a nutritious choice, but raw chicken is often contaminated with Campylobacter bacteria and sometimes with Salmonella and Clostridium perfringens bacteria. If you eat undercooked chicken or other foods or beverages contaminated by raw chicken or its juices, you can get a foodborne illness, which is also called food poisoning.

That’s why it’s important to take special care when handling and preparing chicken.


Research – High levels of potentially harmful bacteria found in raw meat dog food products: study

Science Daily 260px-YellowLabradorLooking_new

Many raw meat dog food products contain high levels of bacteria that pose potential health risks to both animals and people, finds research published online in Vet Record.

This is a particular issue for infants, the elderly, and those with poor immunity, warn the researchers.

A raw meat-based diet has become increasingly popular for dogs in recent years, because it is seen as a ‘healthier’ and more ‘natural alternative’ to widely available commercial products.

But, unlike commercial feeds, raw meat products are not heat treated or freeze dried to pasteurise their content.

To try and gauge the levels of bacteria in these products, the researchers took samples from 60 packs of raw meat products, bought from a range of stores within a 200 km radius of their laboratory between March and September 2017.

The products, which were all intended for dogs, contained at least one of: uncooked meat; and edible bones and/or organs from cattle, chicken, lamb, turkeys, pigs, ducks, reindeer or salmon. Some of the products also included vegetables, vegetable fibre, and minerals.

All the products, made by 10 different manufacturers, originated from Sweden, Norway, Finland, Germany or England.

The samples were analysed for bacteria that could potentially pose a health risk to animals and people: Enterobacteriaceae species; Clostridium perfringens, Salmonella and Campylobacter species.

All 60 samples contained Enterobacteriaceae species, which are indicators of faecal contamination and hygiene standards.

Levels varied widely among the different manufacturers, and in some cases, among the different products from the same manufacturer.

But 31 (52%) of the samples contained levels that exceeded the maximum threshold set by European Union (EU) regulations of 5000 bacteria per gram.

Most of the species identified are not known to cause infection, apart from E coli, which was found in about a third of the samples.

C perfringens, another marker of faecal contamination and hygiene standards, was found in 18 samples (30%); two of the samples exceeded the maximum limits set by Swedish guidelines.

Salmonella and Campylobacter are zoonotic species of bacteria-capable of passing from animals to people and causing infection. EU regulations don’t permit Salmonella in any animal feed.

Salmonella species were found in 4 (7%) of the 60 samples, while Campylobacter species were found in three samples from three different manufacturers. This is a relatively low level, but possibly because Campylobacter species are very sensitive to freezing, say the researchers.

“It is most likely that Campylobacter was present in more samples before freezing, and that those samples in which Campylobacter was isolated contained very high levels of Campylobacter species before the freezing process, as some managed to survive the freezer,” they write.

The findings prompt the researchers to highlight the importance of careful storage, handling, and feeding of raw meat dog food products because of the potential health risks they pose.

They make several recommendations, designed to curb the risk of infection and antibiotic resistance. Raw meat dog food should be:

    • Kept frozen until use, and thawed at 10 degrees C

Kept separate from other food

Handled with separate kitchen equipment or with equipment that is washed thoroughly after use

Good hygiene is essential, they emphasise: bacteria in the juices from raw meat dog food can splash and spread to other foods and surfaces, and dogs can transfer potentially harmful and/or antibiotic resistant bacteria by ‘kissing’ faces immediately after eating.

Dogs shouldn’t be fed raw meat products while being treated with antibiotics as this could increase the risk of antibiotic resistance, they say.

“Dogs in families with infants, elderly people or immunocompromised individuals should also not be fed [raw meat products], as these groups are more susceptible to infections,” they warn.

British Veterinary Association Junior Vice President Daniella Dos Santos commented: “This research offers further compelling evidence to support vets’ concerns about the potential animal and public health risks associated with feeding pets a raw meat-based diet.

“Bacteria such as E coli and Salmonella can cause significant gastrointestinal disease in animals. Pets can also shed potentially harmful pathogens present in raw food into their environment, so there is a risk to owners both in handling the food and coming into contact with the animal. Pet owners who choose to feed a raw food diet should be aware of the potential health risks and take full precautions while storing and handling the food.

“BVA would also not recommend making a raw food diet at home without veterinary guidance due to the potential for nutritional deficiencies in homemade diets.

“We would advise any owner wanting to try a raw meat-based diet for their pet to first consult a veterinary surgeon.”

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Journal Reference:

  1. Josefin Hellgren, Lovisa Staaf Hästö, Camilla Wikström, Lise-Lotte Fernström, Ingrid Hansson. Occurrence of Salmonella, Campylobacter, Clostridium and Enterobacteriaceae in raw meat-based diets for dogsVeterinary Record, 2019; vetrec-2018-105199 DOI: 10.1136/vr.105199

Canada -Health unit pinpoints bacteria in Strathroy Portuguese Club food poisoning -Clostridium perfringens

Global News

CDC Clost perf

Image CDC

The investigation gathered food samples from the event and stool samples from those who attended.

In lab reports, Clostridium perfringens enterotoxin turned up in two stool samples and Clostridium perfringens was found in a sample of roast beef — the former is what the latter bacteria turns into once digested.

“We did take other food samples… it was only the roast beef that came back growing bacteria,” said Mary Lou Albanese, the manager of infectious disease for the MLHU.

Albanese added that the bacteria is quick-moving, often making people ill within 12 hours after ingesting.



Information – Occurrence of Salmonella, Campylobacter, Clostridium and Enterobacteriaceae in raw meat-based diets for dogs

Veterinary Record


The practice of feeding raw meat-based diets (RMBD) to dogs has increased in popularity in recent years. However, RMBD are based on offal that has not undergone any type of treatment to reduce the microbial content, so there is a risk of potential pathogenic microorganisms being present. Frozen samples from 60 RMBD packs produced by 10 different manufacturers were analysed for their content of bacteria belonging to the family Enterobacteriaceae, for Clostridium perfringens and for the presence of Salmonella and Campylobacter. Enterobacteriaceae were detected in all 60 samples and in 31 samples exceeded a level of 5000 bacteria/g, which is the threshold for satisfactory microbial hygiene according to EU regulations. In two samples, the amount of C. perfringens exceeded 5000 bacteria/g, which is the maximum level of anaerobic bacteria permitted by Swedish national guidelines. Salmonella species were found in four (7 per cent) and Campylobacter species in three (5 per cent) samples. These results show that it is critical to maintain good hygiene when storing, handling and feeding RMBD, in order to limit the potential health risks to animals and humans, especially young and immunocompromised individuals.

USA – Months after Chipotle food-born illnesses, restaurant still has violations


The outbreak of food-born illnesses from a Delaware County restaurant made national headlines and led Chipotle to retrain its entire staff, but still the Powell restaurant had three critical violations on its latest inspection by the Delaware General Health District. Clostridium perfringens

Research – An assessment of the microbial quality of “döner kebab” during cold storage: Effects of different packaging methods and microwave heating before consumption

Wiley Online


In the current study, döner kebabs packed with different packaging methods (air packaging [AP], modified atmosphere packaging [MAP], vacuum packaging [VP] and sous vide packaging [SVP]) were evaluated for their microbial quality during storage at 4 °C. In addition, the effect of microwave heating before consumption on the microbial quality of döner kebabs was also investigated. Total mesophilic aerobic bacteria and total psycrophilic aerobic bacteria counts of döner kebabs increased during storage and reached to 6.48, 8.27, 8.15, 3.96 and 5.58, 8.53, 8.63, <1.00 log cfu/g in AP (9th day), MAP (29th day), VP (29th day) and SVP (99th day) groups, respectively. Although coliform, Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus counts of döner kebabs were below 3 MPN/g, 3 MPN/g, 2 log cfu/g in all groups, respectively; no Clostridium perfringens and Listeria monocytogenes was detected in any of the groups during storage. Microwave heating was found effective on reducing the microbial load of döner kebabs. It was concluded that without any additional preservation techniques, the SVP prolonged the shelf life of döner kebabs more than 20, 6, and 5 times comparing to AP, MAP, and VP groups, respectively.

Practical applications

Döner kebab is a meat product which is very convenient for microbial growth due to its nutritional and chemical composition. Döner kebab that cannot be sold immediately after production causes high economic losses since the shelf life of döner kebab is very short after cooking. Therefore, it requires additional preservation techniques in order to prevent the economic losses after cooking and to have the opportunity of secure serving of it where döner kebab oven is not present. In the current study, sous vide (SV) applied döner kebabs protected their microbiological quality at least 100 days at 4 °C without any additional preservation techniques and application of SV after cooking provided döner kebabs with a longer shelf life comparing to air packaging, modified atmosphere packaging and vacuum packaging methods. Besides, microwave heating was applied to döner kebabs in order to simulate the conditions of consumption. Microwave heating before consumption significantly reduced the microbial load of döner kebabs.

UK – Former pub owner fined £14,000 after nearly 200 people suffer food poisoning on Mother’s Day

Somerset Live


The former owner of a North Somerset pub has been fined £14,000 after nearly 200 people fell ill after eating at his venue on Mother’s Day.

Hundreds of people ate a meal at The Old Farmhouse in Nailsea on March 11, 2018, but 186 fell ill with food poisoning after their visit.

The case, brought to North Somerset Magistrates’ Court on Friday (January 11), revealed that tests on the samples taken from the pub showed that both the beef and lamb contained the bacteria Clostridium perfringens.

In a letter to the court Mr Montgomery said: “I am truly sorry for the harm caused to our patrons.”

Mr Montogomery was fined £4,000 for failing to ensure the relevant food safety documentation was in place.

He was fined a further £10,000 for placing unsafe food on the market.

He was also ordered to pay the £4,765 costs of the investigation and a £170 victim surcharge.