Category Archives: Foodborne Illness Death

Italy hit by new Listeria outbreak with one dead

Food Safety News

Italian authorities are investigating a Listeria outbreak that has sickened 22 people and killed one.

Mortadella sold by Veroni is being looked at as a potential source but an official link has not been confirmed by authorities.

In early November, a number of recalls were published for Veroni mortadella due to potential Listeria contamination.

A product recalled by Veroni in November

The Ministry of Health (Ministero della Salute) issued a warning covering a few batches of the Veroni Supergiant Mortadella packed in small portions due to the presence of Listeria monocytogenes.

Veroni said it immediately and voluntarily alerted the market, recalling all batches of Supergiant Mortadella with and without pistachios in portions that had expiry dates before Dec. 27, 2022.

USA – Outbreak Investigation of E. coli O121:H19 Frozen Falafel (October 2022)

FDA

The FDA, along with CDC and state and local partners, investigated a multistate outbreak of E. coli O121:H19 infections linked to Earth Grown frozen falafel.

As of December 1, 2022, CDC announced that the outbreak is over. There have been a total of 24 illnesses in six states. The last illness onset was October 24, 2022.

On October 7, 2022, the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development collected Earth Grown frozen falafel for testing from a sick person’s home. Whole Genome Sequencing done at the Michigan Department of Health & Human Services showed that the E. coli strain in the falafel sample was closely related to the strain causing illness in this outbreak.

On October 6, 2022, the manufacturer of Earth Grown frozen falafel, Cuisine Innovations, initiated a voluntary recall. Recalled products include Earth Grown vegan traditional falafel and garlic & herb falafel distributed and sold exclusively by ALDI. Additional information on recalled products is available in the firm’s recall notice.

Recommendation

These items are no longer available for sale but were sold frozen and have a long shelf-life of 18 months, so consumers should check their freezers for any recalled Earth Grown vegan traditional falafel and garlic & herb falafel that was sold by ALDI. If you have recalled frozen falafel in your freezer, do not eat or serve them.


Product Images

Outbreak Investigation E.coli Frozen Falafel October 2022 - Sample Product Images

Map of U.S. Distribution

Outbreak Ecoli Falafel Distribution Map

Case Count Map Provided by CDC

Outbreak Investigation of E. coli O121: Frozen Falafel (October 2022) - CDC Case Count Map as of December 1, 2022

Case Counts

Total Illnesses: 24
Hospitalizations: 5
Deaths: 1
Last illness onset: October 24, 2022
States with Cases: FL (2), IA (2), KS (1), MI (13), OH (1), WI (5)
Product Distribution: Nationwide

Viet Nam – Salmonella, Bacillus cereus, E.coli detected in food samples in Nha Trang school outbreak

Outbreak News Today

In a follow-up on the food poisoning outbreak that affected hundreds of schoolchildren at the Ischool Nha Trang in Khanh Hoa province, Vietnam, health officials now report test results from the Pasteur Institute Nha Trang show pathogenic bacteria were found in the fried chicken wings of the meal, causing the outbreak which sickened students at a Ischool Nha Trang.

Specifically, Salmonella sp., Bacillus cereus and Escherichia coli were detected in food samples. In addition, Bacillus cereus was also detected in fish sauce samples.

According to our previous report, some 400 students were sickened including more than 200 hospitalizations and one death was reported in a first grade student after eating a school lunch.

Viet Nam – Mass food poisoning at Nha Trang school caused by Salmonella bacteria

VN Express

Health officials confirmed over 600 students of Ischool in Nha Trang in the central province of Khanh Hoa were poisoned with the Salmonella bacteria that is sensitive to most antibiotics.

Khanh Hoa Health Department announced the cause four days after the mass food poisoning case on November 17. Among the victims, a 6-year-old boy died on Sunday en route to a HCMC hospital.

Doctor Doan Uyen Vy, an anti-poison expert of Cho Ray Hospital in HCMC, told VnExpress that Salmonella is a common culprit in many food poisoning cases from mild to severe.

Research – Fatal Listeria outbreak linked to Scottish fish processor

Food Safety News

A deadly Listeria outbreak in the United Kingdom has been linked to one company but product testing has only found low levels of contamination.

Food Standards Scotland (FSS) and the Food Standards Agency (FSA) suspect the source of contamination to be a salmon-smoking processing factory in Scotland.

Food Standards Scotland wouldn’t name the company or answer questions about the incident from Food Safety News.

Instead, a spokesperson said: “This is an ongoing outbreak of Listeria monocytogenes and, as yet, no definitive source of contamination has been found. Investigations to determine the root cause continue. Investigations of any outbreaks of foodborne illness will comprise both patient questionnaires and sampling of products.

“Local authorities are responsible for working on mitigations with any implicated businesses, and FSS, alongside partners the UK Health Security Agency, Public Health Scotland, and the Food Standards Agency, have been involved in raising awareness of the outbreak with consumers, most recently with targeted messaging to vulnerable groups.”

There have been 14 confirmed Listeria monocytogenes cases in just under two years. At least 10 sick people are above 65 years old, and one was a pregnant woman.

Three people older than 65 have died and for two Listeria monocytogenes was a contributory cause of death. All cases had underlying health conditions.

Of the linked cases of listeriosis since October 2020, eight have been identified since January 2022. The majority of them reported eating ready-to-eat smoked fish.

USA – Listeria Outbreak Linked to Deli Meat and Cheese

cdc

You are at higher risk for severe Listeria illness if you are pregnant, aged 65 or older, or have a weakened immune system due to certain medical conditions or treatments. If you are in any of these groups, do not eat meat or cheese from any deli counter, unless it is reheated to an internal temperature of 165°F or until steaming hot.

Fast Facts
  • Illnesses: 16
  • Hospitalizations: 13
  • Deaths: 1
  • States: 6
  • Recall: No
  • Investigation status: Active
Listeria in Deli Meat and Cheese

Deli meats (cold cuts, lunch meats, hot dogs, and pâtés sold at the deli) and cheeses are known sources of Listeria illnesses. This is because Listeria can easily spread among food on deli countertops, deli slicers, surfaces, and hands. Listeria is a hardy germ that can be difficult to fully remove once it is in the deli. It can survive and grow at cold temperatures in the refrigerator.

Source of the Outbreak

Information collected so far shows that deli meat and cheese purchased at deli counters in multiple states are the likely sources of this outbreak.

It is difficult for investigators to identify a single food as the source of outbreaks linked to deli meats and cheeses. This is because Listeria spreads easily between food and the deli environment and can persist for a long time in deli display cases and on equipment. A contaminated food likely introduced the outbreak strain of Listeria into delis in multiple states. Investigators are working to identify any specific products or delis that may be contaminated with the outbreak strain.

USA – Deli Meat and Cheese with Listeria sickens 16 in 6 States since 2021

Food Poison Journal

Key Facts: 16 sick people in California (1), Illinois (2), Maryland (3), Massachusetts (2), New Jersey (1) and New York (7) range in age from 38 to 92 years, with a median age of 74, and 62% are male. Of 13 people with ethnicity information available, 11 are of Eastern European background or speak Russian. Of 14 people with information available, 13 have been hospitalized. One person got sick during their pregnancy, resulting in pregnancy loss. Additionally, one death has been reported from Maryland. Sick people’s samples were collected from April 17, 2021, to September 29, 2022.

CDC, public health and regulatory officials in several states, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (USDA-FSIS), and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are collecting different types of data to investigate a multistate outbreak of Listeria monocytogenes infections.

Epidemiologic and laboratory data show that meat and cheese from deli counters contaminated with Listeria are making people sick. Investigators are still working to identify any specific products or delis that may be contaminated with the outbreak strain.

As of November 9, 2022, 16 people infected with the outbreak strain of Listeria have been reported from 6 states – California, Illinois, New York, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey.

Vietnam reports more food poisoning deaths in 10 months in 2022

English News

HANOI, Nov. 7 (Xinhua) — A total of 581 people in Vietnam suffered from food poisoning in the first 10 months of 2022, of whom 11 died, according to the country’s Preventive Health Department on Monday.

In the same period last year, as many as 1,519 people were affected by food poisoning, of whom five died.

Philippines – One student dies, several others hospitalized due to food poisoning in Iloilo

MB

ILOILO CITY – One student died while several others were hospitalized due to food poisoning in Ajuy town in Iloilo province on Friday, Nov. 4.

Mayor Jett Rojas confirmed to the Manila Bulletin in a phone interview on Sunday, Nov. 6, the news on the death of a student and several others who were hospitalized allegedly after drinking spoiled buko juice during a school party on Friday, Nov. 4.

“We can now confirm this is food poisoning,” said Mayor Rojas in an interview with the Manila Bulletin.

 



 

Research – The number affected in the Italian Listeria outbreak climbs to 90; three dead

Food Safety News

At least 90 people have been affected and three have died in a major Listeria outbreak in Italy.

The Ministry of Health (Ministero della Salute) said the most recent patient was reported in mid-September.

Deaths occurred in December 2021 and March and June 2022 in Lombardy, Piedmont, and Emilia Romagna. The patients were immunocompromised or particularly vulnerable to infection. One woman lost her baby in the outbreak.

Patients live in Piedmont, Lombardy, Veneto, Emilia Romagna, Liguria, Umbria, Tuscany, Calabria, Lazio, Puglia, Valle D’Aosta and Abruzzo.