Category Archives: Food Microbiology

Australia – 7 dead, 1 miscarriage: New control measures to be set up on Australian rockmelon farms

Barf Blog

In April, thousands of rockmelons were left to rot in paddocks near Geraldton on the Western Australian coast, record low prices and lost markets meant they were simply not worth picking.

Grower Carol Metcalf said the rows of rotting melons were the result of the listeria outbreak on a rockmelon farm more than 3,500 kilometres away in New South Wales.

Under a new plan released this week, all rockmelon farms in Australia will be inspected and work will be undertaken on each individual farm to ensure that the highest standards are implemented and maintained.

At the time of the outbreak on February this year, the NSW Food Authority speculated that the most likely cause of the listeria outbreak was contaminated soil possibly not being properly washed off the skin of the fruit.

In addition it was thought that a weather event may have increased the listeria bacteria on the product.

But the formal investigation into the cause of the outbreak has not been completed by the NSW Food Authority and therefore the official report on the cause has still not been released.

 

Research – Ruminant and chicken: important sources of Campylobacteriosis in France

Poultry Med

Campylobacter spp. are regarded as the most common foodborne bacterial zoonosis in Europe, despite potential underestimation due to underreporting of cases. In France, C. jejuni is responsible for nearly 80% of human infections while C. coli accounts for around 15%. The economic burden of campylobacteriosis has been estimated to 2.4 billion euros annually in Europe, with estimates of £50 million in 2008–2009 in the United Kingdom and 82 million euros in the Netherlands in 2011.Pathogen source attribution studies are a useful tool for identifying reservoirs of human infection. Based on Multilocus Sequence Typing (MLST) data, such studies have identified chicken as a major source of C. jejuni human infection. The use of whole genome sequence-based typing methods offers potential to improve the precision of attribution beyond that which is possible from 7 MLST loci. Using published data and 156 novel C. jejuni genomes sequenced in this study, the researchers performed probabilistic host source attribution of clinical C. jejuni isolates from France using three types of genotype data: comparative genomic fingerprints; MLST genes; 15 host segregating genes previously identified by whole genome sequencing. Consistent with previous studies, chicken was an important source of campylobacteriosis in France (31–63% of clinical isolates assigned). There was also evidence that ruminants are a source (22–55% of clinical isolates assigned), suggesting that further investigation of potential transmission routes from ruminants to human would be useful.

RASFF Alert – STEC E.coli – Frozen Herb Mix with Parsley

kswfoodworld food safety poisoning

RASFF-shigatoxin-producing Escherichia coli (stx1+, stx2+ /25g) in frozen herb mixes containing parsley from Germany in Germany

RASFF Alerts – Aflatoxin – Pistachio Nuts – Hazlenut Kernels – Groundnuts – Almonds

kswfoodworld food safety poisoning

RASFF-aflatoxins (B1 = 11.3; Tot. = 12.0 µg/kg – ppb) in pistachio nuts from Iran in Lithuania

RASFF-aflatoxins (B1 = 11.4; Tot. = 49.6 µg/kg – ppb) in hazelnut kernels from Georgia in Bulgaria

RASFF-aflatoxins (B1 = 16.17; Tot. = 20.04 / B1 = 15.72; Tot. = 20.91 µg/kg – ppb) in groundnuts without shell from Egypt in Romania

RASFF-aflatoxins (B1 = 12.49 µg/kg – ppb) in almonds from the United States in Spain

RASFF Alert – Hepatitis A – Frozen Raw Saltwater Clams

kswfoodworld food safety poisoning

RASFF-hepatitis A virus (present /2g) in frozen raw saltwater clams (Donax trunculus) from Turkey in Spain

RASFF Alert – Mould – Frozen Raspberries

kswfoodworld food safety poisoning

RASFF-frozen raspberries from Ukraine infested with moulds in Poland

RASFF Alert – Histamine – Chilled Anchovies

kswfoodworld food safety poisoning

RASFF-histamine (up to 145.4 mg/kg – ppm) in chilled anchovies (Engraulis encrasicolus) from Italy in Italy