Category Archives: Clostridium perfringens

RASFF Alert – Clostridium perfringens – Dried Natural Casings


Detection of Salmonella and Clostridium perfringens in dried natural casings from Portugal in France

Research – A Comprehensive Review of Variability in The Thermal Resistance (D-Values) of Food-Borne Pathogens—A Challenge for Thermal Validation Trials



The thermal processing of food relies heavily on determining the right time and temperature regime required to inactivate bacterial contaminants to an acceptable limit. To design a thermal processing regime with an accurate time and temperature combination, the D-values of targeted microorganisms are either referred to or estimated. The D-value is the time required at a given temperature to reduce the bacterial population by 90%. The D-value can vary depending on various factors such as the food matrix, the bacterial strain, and the conditions it has previously been exposed to; the intrinsic properties of the food (moisture, water activity, fat content, and pH); the method used to expose the microorganism to the thermal treatment either at the laboratory or commercial scale; the approach used to estimate the number of survivors; and the statistical model used for the analysis of the data. This review focused on Bacillus cereus, Cronobacter sakazakii, Escherichia coli, Listeria monocytogenes, and Clostridium perfringens owing to their pathogenicity and the availability of publications on their thermal resistance. The literature indicates a significant variation in D-values reported for the same strain, and it is concluded that when designing thermal processing regimes, the impact of multiple factors on the D-values of a specific microorganism needs to be considered. Further, owing to the complexity of the interactions involved, the effectiveness of regimes derived laboratory data must be confirmed within industrial food processing settings.


Research – Prevent Illness From C. perfringens


CDC Clost perf

Clostridium perfringens bacteria are one of the most common causes of food poisoning. CDC estimates that the bacterium causes nearly 1 million foodborne illnesses in the United States every year.

C. perfringens makes spores, which are inactive forms of the bacterium that help it survive heat, dryness, and other environmental conditions. Under certain conditions, such as when food is kept at an unsafe temperature (between 40°F and 140°F), C. perfringens spores can transform into active bacteria, which multiply in the food. After someone eats food containing C. perfringens, it can produce a toxin (poison) that causes diarrhea.

Foods cooked in large batches and held at unsafe temperatures are typically involved in outbreaks of C. perfringens food poisoning. Specific foods commonly linked to C. perfringens food poisoning include

  • Poultry, such as turkey and chicken
  • Meat, such as beef and pork
  • Gravy

Outbreaks of C. perfringens food poisoning tend to happen in settings where large groups of people are served and keeping food at proper temperatures may be difficult—for example, hospitals, school cafeterias, prisons, nursing homes, and large events with catered food.

Most of these outbreaks happen in November and December. Many of them have been linked to popular holiday foods, such as turkey and roast beef.

Research – Another drop in outbreaks was recorded in Germany for 2021

Food Safety News

The amount of foodborne outbreaks reported in Germany has continued to fall, according to the latest figures.

In 2021, the Robert Koch-Institut (RKI) and Federal Office of Consumer Protection and Food Safety (BVL) received slightly fewer reports of outbreaks with 168 compared to 193 in the previous year.

At least 1,179 cases, 196 hospitalizations, and two deaths were related to them in 2021. As in previous years, the top causes were Campylobacter and Salmonella.

Other agents involved in outbreaks were norovirus, Bacillus cereus, hepatitis A virus, Listeria monocytogenes, Clostridium perfringens, Yersinia enterocolitica, Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC), Clostridium botulinum, Cronobacter sakazakii, histamine, Shigella, and Staphylococcus aureus. In seven outbreaks with 73 cases, the pathogen remained unknown.

Nineteen of the 22 outbreaks with more than five patients were caused by Salmonella.

France – COUSCOUS 350G – Bacillus cereus – Clostridium perfringens – Escherichia coli – Staphylococcus aureus


Identification information of the recalled product

  • Product category Feed
  • Product subcategory Meats
  • Product brand name FLAVORS OF ANTOINE
  • Model names or references COUSCOUS 350G
  • Identification of products
    GTIN Batch Date
    3700912305695 2290 Use-by date 09/11/2022
  • Packaging Transparent tray
  • Marketing start/end date From 26/10/2022 to 02/11/2022
  • Storage temperature Product to be stored in the refrigerator
  • Health mark12145001
  • Further information COUSCOUS 350G Batch: 2290 BBD: 12/12/2022
  • Geographic area of ​​sale Whole France

Practical information regarding the recall

  • Reason for recall Labeling error on COUSCOUS 350G lot 2290: incorrect DLC information DLC displayed on 12/12/2022 instead of 11/09/2022
  • Risks incurred by the consumer Bacillus cereus
    Clostridium perfringens
    Escherichia coli
    Staphylococcus aureus (causative agent of staphylococcal poisoning)

Japan – Clostridium perfringens food poisoning linked to dozens of illnesses in Yamaguchi Prefecture

Outbreak News Today

Yamaguchi Prefecture announced on 26 Sep 2022 that 46 residents of 2 elderly facilities run by the social welfare corporation Midoriyamakai in Furukawa-cho, Kudamatsu City developed foodborne illness caused by Clostridium perfringens. They complained of diarrhea and abdominal pain, but all but one with a chronic illness have recovered.

According to the prefecture, the 2 facilities are Gran Terrace Kudamatsu Chuo, a care house, and Hoshi Terrace, a special nursing home for the elderly. On 17 Sep 2022, a total of 109 residents and staff of the 2 facilities were served breakfast prepared by the Midoriyamakai-run school lunch facility. It is said that 46 people developed symptoms from the evening of the same day to 18 Sep 2022.

The prefectural government determined that the simmered food was the source of the illness, as Clostridium perfringens was detected in the simmered komatsuna (Japanese mustard spinach) and deep-fried fish cakes served for breakfast.

Switzerland – Swiss outbreaks triple in 2021; illnesses also rise

Food Safety News

The number of foodborne outbreaks almost tripled in Switzerland in 2021 compared to the year before.

This past year, 37 outbreaks were reported with 540 people sick and 40 hospitalized versus 13 outbreaks in 2020.

Officials at the Federal Food Safety and Veterinary Office said the increase could be random, it could be due to better reporting and data collection or it could show the food safety situation has gotten worse, possibly because of the COVID-19 pandemic and other challenges facing businesses.

The agent was unknown in 17 outbreaks but Salmonella caused seven, norovirus four, Campylobacter three, two were due to Bacillus cereus and one each because of Shiga toxin-producing E. coli, Clostridium perfringens and hepatitis E.

Israel – Mercato brand Acorn mini-kabob – Clostridium perfringens


 Carmel Delicacies Ltd. recalls Mercato brand Acorn mini-kabob (880g; Expiration date 19.6.2022) due to Clostridium perfringens contamination.

Research – Two Case Reports of Scombroid in Singapore: A Literature Review



Scombroid is a foodborne illness that results from eating improperly handled fish. Due to a disruption in the cold chain, these fish have high histamine levels. As a result, scombroid presents with allergy-like symptoms but is not really an allergy per se. Cases have been reported in many countries.

Here, we report two cases of a 48 and 17-year-old father and son in Singapore who developed symptoms suggestive of scombroid after eating tuna imported from Vietnam delivered by an internationally known supply company. The diagnosis was confirmed by elevated histamine levels measured in the culprit fish product. We discuss the pathophysiology, signs, symptoms, and management of scombroid.


Scombrotoxin fish poisoning (SFP) also known as scombroid poisoning, scombrotoxicosis, or histamine fish poisoning is a foodborne illness that results from the consumption of fish that has been improperly handled between the time it is caught and the time it is cooked [1]. The word “scombroid” is derived from Scombridae which is a family of dark-fleshed fish consisting of species such as mackerel and tuna. However, non-scombroid fishes such as mahi-mahi, salmon, and sardine have also been implicated in scombroid poisoning [2].

Scombroid poisoning is very common. A 2013 report from the United States estimated over 35,000 cases resulting in 162 hospital admissions between 2000 and 2009 [3]. Scombroid cases have also been reported from countries such as Australia [4], the Netherlands [5], Israel [6], Colombia [7], and many others.

Inappropriate storage, resulting in disruption of the cold chain, of the fish leads to bacterial enzymatic conversion of free histidine into histamine. This is due to the action of bacterial histamine decarboxylase (HDC), usually by mesophilic bacteria such as Clostridium perfringensMorganella morganii, etc. As a result, high levels of histamine are usually found in the culprit seafood item [8]. Whether histamine is the only constituent of “scombrotoxin” is unclear. Nevertheless, the symptomatology is essentially that of histamine toxicity. It is considered an atypical foodborne illness as the main symptoms are not gastrointestinal and also because it is not due to contamination of the product.

While mostly self-limiting and mild, there have been reports of life-threatening scombroid poisoning. A previously healthy young woman developed hypotension needing vasopressors with ST depressions [9] while another scombroid poisoning was complicated by acute pancreatitis [10]. Some cases were severe enough to need ICU admissions. A recent narrative discussed acute coronary syndromes (ACS) associated with scombroid. Of note, there is a potential of hemodynamic failure in the acute stage, even in apparently healthy people [11].

Closer to home, in September 2016, the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) of Singapore issued a recall order on a batch of canned tuna imported from Thailand under a common food brand. This was reported in various newspapers such as The Straits Times and The Independent. In one issue of the Singapore Food Agency’s Food Safety Bulletin in 2018, there was a segment on scombroid. Interestingly, however, a PubMed search was conducted and while we found a case of pufferfish poisoning reported in 2013 [12] and a report of stonefish poisoning in 2009 [13], we found no reports of scombroid poisoning in Singapore. We report two confirmed cases of scombroid poisoning who are from the same household who presented to our hospital after consuming tuna for dinner.

RASFF Alert – Animal Feed – Clostridium perfringens – Fish Meal


The presence of Clostridium perfringens in fishmeal from the Czech Republic in Romania