Category Archives: food death

Cambodia – Villagers poisoned in two separate cases over weekend

Khmer Times

One person was killed and about 40 others were injured over the weekend after they consumed wild mushrooms and salted crabs in Preah Sihanouk and Battambang provinces.

Seng Nong, director of the Preah Sihanouk Provincial Referral Hospital, yesterday said five people working at the special economic zone were sent to hospital on Friday after they consumed mushrooms, noting that one of the victims died.

“According to them, they used mushrooms in their cooking, and after eating, they began vomiting and having difficulty breathing,” Mr Nong said. “We suspect they had been poisoned by the mushrooms because they ate nothing else but those mushrooms.”

Research – Lab work in South Africa’s Listeria outbreak was ‘remarkable’

Food Safety News

Researchers have described how a laboratory handled increased demand during the 2017-2018 listeriosis outbreak in South Africa.

Whole genome sequencing (WGS) and epidemiological data were used to determine the source of the outbreak as ready-to-eat processed meat manufactured by Enterprise Foods.

A total of 1,060 cases were reported from January 2017 to July 2018 and 216 people died.

The largest ever reported outbreak of listeriosis included an alert in mid-June 2017, a peak in mid-November 2017, and identification of the outbreak source in mid-February 2018.

“This eight-month timeline was rather remarkable, considering the large number of cases involved and the limited capacity and resources available for foodborne disease outbreak investigations in South Africa,” according to researchers.

The study is published in the Foodborne Pathogens and Disease journal

USA – Outbreak of Multidrug-Resistant Shigella sonnei Infections in a Retirement Community — Vermont, October–November 2018


On October 22, 2018, the Vermont Department of Health (VDH) notified CDC’s Waterborne Disease Prevention Branch of an outbreak of diarrhea caused by Shigella sonnei among residents, visitors, and staff members of a retirement community in Chittenden County, the state’s most populous county. High-quality single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) analysis predicted initial isolates were multidrug resistant (MDR), and were closely related to a concurrent multistate cluster (differing by 0–11 SNPs). In the United States, rates of MDR shigellosis are increasing (1); outbreaks of MDR shigellosis are more common among men who have sex with men and are rare in retirement community settings (2). CDC collaborated with VDH to identify additional cases, determine transmission routes, and recommend prevention and control measures.

Canada – ‘My mom’s death was needless’: Families want answers after Salmonella outbreak at Winnipeg care home


A Winnipeg care home where two residents recently died has confirmed it served frozen food from Thailand that was later linked to the Canada-wide outbreak of salmonella.

Golden West Centennial Lodge executive director Joyce Kristjansson told staff and families in an email on Tuesday morning it had given residents cream puffs that are now on the recall list.

Two residents at the 116-bed personal care facility in the Sturgeon Creek neighbourhood died in March, and a third was sickened. All three tested positive for salmonella.

Canada – 73 with Salmonella Enteritidis in Canada linked to Profiteroles and Eclairs – 2 Dead

Food Poison Journal

Frozen profiteroles and mini eclairs sold in grocery stores are the apparent sources of two deaths among at least 73 lab-confirmed cases of Salmonella Enteritidis infections in Canada as of April 27, 2019, according to the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC).

The outbreak, which was first announced on April 5, 2019, has spread to six Canadian provinces: British Columbia (27), Alberta (12), Saskatchewan (9), Manitoba (10), Ontario (13) and Quebec (2).

The outbreak began in early November 2018 and remains ongoing, with the most recent case having been reported in late March 2019. Outbreak victims range in age between 1 and 88 years of age.

PHAC has not determined whether or not Salmonella was a contributing factor in either of the deaths. Nineteen outbreak victims have been hospitalized.

Canada – Canada Salmonella Outbreak Sickens Sixty-three

Food Poison Journal

Canadian health officials are investigating an outbreak of Salmonella in six provinces that has sickened 63 people, including 18 who have been hospitalized and two deaths.

People who became ill range in age from one to 87. Individuals became sick between November and March.

The Public Health Agency of Canada said the breakdown of known cases as of Friday includes 23 people in B.C., ten people each in Alberta, Manitoba and Ontario. There are eight cases in Saskatchewan and two in Quebec.

The agency said the source of the bacterial infection has not been identified.

Europe – ECDC – Multi-country cluster of Listeria monocytogenes ST1247 in five EU countries


CDC has identified a microbiological link between an outbreak of nine Listeria monocytogenes ST1247 cases in Denmark and nine additional cases reported between 2014 and 2018 in Estonia (2 cases) Finland (2), France (1) and Sweden (4).

ECDC has identified a microbiological link between an outbreak of nine Listeria monocytogenes ST1247 cases in Denmark and nine additional cases reported between 2014 and 2018 in Estonia (2 cases) Finland (2), France (1) and Sweden (4).  In Denmark, the outbreak investigation is led by Statens Serum Institut (SSI), the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration and the DTU Food Institute.

Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS) analysis performed at the national level and by ECDC found all isolates from the 18 cases within two allelic differences from each other (core genome MLST using Moura scheme, 1540 of 1748 loci detected in all 18 isolates). The latest case was reported in Denmark in February 2019 (Figure 1).

Figure 1: Distribution of Listeria monocytogenes isolates by country and time of reporting 2014-2019 (n=18)

Figure 1: Distribution of Listeria monocytogenes isolates by country and time of reporting 2014-2019 (n=18)

A large-scale study led by ECDC on whole genome sequencing shows that most listeria outbreaks such as this one remain undetected. The study, published in 2018, suggests that more than half of the severe listeriosis cases in the European Union belong to clusters, many of which are not being picked up fast enough by the current surveillance system.

Listeria monocytogenes causes listeriosis, which primarily affects pregnant women, newborns, and adults with a weakened immune system. Listeriosis is a relatively rare but potentially severe food-borne disease that has been reported in increasing numbers in the EU/EEA countries since 2008. In 2016, 2 536 cases were reported, including 247 deaths.