Category Archives: E.coli

RASFF Alert – E.coli – Cooked Mussel Meat

kswfoodworld food safety poisoning

RASFF-too high count of Escherichia coli (160 MPN /g) in frozen cooked mussel meat from Chile in Bulgaria

USA -FDA Investigating Multistate Outbreak of E. coli O157:H7 Infections Linked to Romaine Lettuce from Yuma Growing Region




On July 31 and August 1, 2018, the FDA participated in a meeting of the Leafy Greens Food Safety Task Force that was formed in response to the serious outbreak of E. coli O157:H7 associated with romaine lettuce that occurred earlier this year. During the meeting FDA shared preliminary hypotheses from the Environmental Assessment in Yuma to facilitate conversations with state and local officials, industry and local growers on the hypotheses and associated actions necessary to prevent such an outbreak from occurring again.

As FDA has previously stated, samples of canal water have tested positive for the outbreak strain of E. coli. FDA continues to consider that contaminated water coming into contact with produce, either through direct irrigation or other means, is a viable explanation for the pattern of contamination. But other hypotheses were discussed as well. FDA notes that the canal is close to a Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation (CAFO), a facility with a large number of cattle on the premises. The CAFO can hold in excess of 100,000 head of cattle at any one time and the FDA traceback information showed a clustering of romaine lettuce farms nearby.

Our experts continue to work on examining potential links between the CAFO, adjacent water, and geologic and other factors that may explain the contamination and its relationship to the outbreak. Additional sampling activities will be conducted to further explore and narrow down hypotheses in the near future. Our findings will be detailed in a finalized environmental assessment report.

We urge other government and non-government entities, produce growers in the region, and those engaged in managing the canal systems to work with FDA and marshal and deploy resources to achieve our collective food safety goal. Broad engagement from the surrounding community is critical to developing and implementing remediation measures to reduce the potential for another outbreak. We believe local in-depth knowledge and actions are critical in helping resolve this issue in order to protect public health.

The Environmental Assessment report will be made publicly available when complete.

Research -Effect of surrounding vegetation on microbial survival or die‐off on watermelon surface in an agriculture setting

Wiley Online


Preharvest contamination of produce with food borne pathogens has been a major food safety issue. In this study, we investigated the effect of surrounding vegetation on the survival of natural and inoculated generic Escherichia coli on watermelon rinds in an agricultural field setting. There was no significant difference (p > .05) on the populations of natural generic E. coli (1–1.46 log Most Probable Number (MPN)/sample) and coliforms (<3.99 log CFU/cm2) on watermelons harvested from low, medium, and high levels of vegetation. However, the survival rate of generic E. coli inoculated on watermelon rind discs was variable with the level of vegetation. A significant reduction in generic E. coli count was observed within 12 hr at all vegetation levels. After 108 hr, discs placed at low vegetation level had a highest die‐off reduction (3 log Colony Forming Units (CFU)/cm2) compared to medium and high vegetation levels.

Practical applications

To ensure preharvest produce safety, the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) produce safety rule has suggested a time interval between last irrigation and harvest for potentially contaminating microorganisms to die‐off. However, a knowledge gap exists regarding the influence of surrounding vegetation on microbial die‐off rates on produce in the agricultural field. The findings of this study emphasize the importance of considering the surrounding vegetation while making decisions for developing preharvest risk management strategies based on microbial die‐off rate calculations.

RASFF Alert – STEC E.coli – Chilled Beef

kswfoodworld food safety poisoning

RASFF-shigatoxin-producing Escherichia coli (stx2+ /25g) in chilled beef from Uruguay in the Netherlands

Australia – Recall: Woombye Cheeses (various) – E.coli

Food Authority NSW  

CDC E.coli

Image CDC Enter a caption

The NSW Food Authority advises:

Blackall Country Cheese Pty Ltd trading as Woombye Cheese Company has recalled assorted cheese products from fresh food markets, grocers, independents and selected IGA stores in NSW and QLD due to microbial (high E.coli count) contamination.

Product details:

  • Camembert 200g, Best Before 06.09.18
  • Truffle Triple Cream Brie food service size only, various weights, approx. 1.4kg each, Best Before 17.09.18
  • Triple Cream Brie 200g, Best Before 17.09.18
  • Blackall Gold Washed Rind 200g, (QLD only) wrapped in clear lined cheese wrap, Best Before 10.09.18

Food products contaminated with E.coli may cause illness if consumed. Consumers should not consume this product and should return it to the place of purchase for a full refund.

If you are concerned about your health you should seek medical advice.

For more information on this recall, contact Blackall Country Cheese Pty Ltd on 0413 808 489 or via

Rsearch – Food residuals on the food‐contacting surfaces of stainless steel and polypropylene influence the efficacy of ultraviolet light in killing foodborne pathogens

Wiley Online


This study was conducted to examine effects of food residues on the survivals of pathogens on stainless steel (SSS) and polypropylene (PPP) after ultraviolet‐radiation (UVR) surface decontamination. Cultures of Escherichia coli O157:H7, Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium, Staphylococcus aureus, and Listeria monocytogenes were inoculated on coupons containing deionized water, tryptic soy broth, pork, chicken, cabbage, and milk, respectively. The surface coupons were incubated at 100% relative humidity (RH) and 25°C for 24 hr to produce their own biofilms. UVR (=254 nm) surface decontamination for 120 min resulted in bacterial reductions in the levels of ≥2.5 log10 cfu/coupon. Populations of S. Typhimurium and L. monocytogenes within biofilms declined on SSS harboring chicken juice after UVR for 120 min, showing by <1.5 log10‐reductions. The presence of food residues on the food‐contacting surfaces would facilitate the strong adhesion of these organisms, indicating that bacteria enclosed in biofilms were more resistant to UVR sanitization.

Practical applications

In this study, it seemed to indicate that the incidence of varying food residues such as deionized water, tryptic soy broth, pork, chicken, cabbage, and milk could affect bacterial adhesion–attachment to the food‐contacting surfaces significantly. At least, some food residues such as pork, chicken, and milk would be supposed to provide a favorable environment where major foodborne pathogens are able to grow and produce their biofilms strongly. Especially, it was determined that the gram‐negative bacteria such as Escherichia coli O157:H7 and Salmonella typhimurium showed the higher sensitivity on coupons against ultraviolet‐radiation surface decontamination.

France -French firm allowed to restart cheese sales from site linked to E. coli outbreak

Food Safety News

French officials have allowed a dairy company to resume operations at a site linked to a deadly E. coli outbreak earlier this year.

The dairy, Chabert, was permitted to restart the marketing of raw milk reblochon cheese from its site in Cruseilles, a town in the Haute-Savoie department of the country, last week.

Fifteen children aged 1 to 5 years old from across France were infected with E. coli O26 between February and May. Laboratory tests confirmed 12 were affected by one strain of E. coli O26. Eleven of the infected children developed a type of kidney failure called hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). One child died.

HUS is not common in France with between 100 and 160 cases being reported each year. Young children, the elderly, pregnant women and others with weakened immune systems are particularly vulnerable to HUS, a life-threatening disease characterized by acute renal failure and low blood platelets.

Of the other three children, two were infected with an E. coli O26 strain different from that of the other 12 and for one child no strain could be isolated.