Category Archives: STEC

Canada – Notice not to consume minced meat sold by Supermarché Perrier et Martel inc. (Metro Plus) – STEC E.coli


MAPAQ, in collaboration with Supermarché Perrier et Martel inc. (Metro Plus), located at 6155, boulevard Arthur-Sauvé, in Laval , is warning the population not to consume the products indicated in the table below, as these foods are likely to contain the bacterium E. coli which produces shigatoxins .

Product name Formats Targeted lot
“Lean ground grain veal. “
Variable weight
All formats

Units sold bearing the following packaging date: 2021FE15

“Lean ax pork”
“Minced beef / pork / veal”

The products that are the subject of this advisory were only offered for sale on February 15, 2021 , and only at the location identified above. They were placed on a polystyrene tray and covered with plastic wrap. They were sold refrigerated.

The operator is voluntarily recalling the products in question. He agreed with MAPAQ to disseminate this warning as a precautionary measure. People who have any of these products in their possession are advised not to consume it. They must return it to the establishment where they bought it or throw it away.

It should be noted that proper cooking of meat destroys the E. coli bacteria in all cases. Preparing ready-made meals, such as spaghetti sauce, shepherd’s pie, or meat pie, requires a fairly long cooking time and a temperature high enough to destroy the bacteria.

It should be noted that no case of illness associated with the consumption of these foods has been reported to MAPAQ so far.

Food contaminated with the shigatoxin- producing E. coli bacteria may not look or smell spoiled, but eating these foods can cause serious illness or death. They are manifested by diarrhea and abdominal pain, often accompanied by blood in the stool. These symptoms usually appear two to ten days after eating a contaminated food. Nausea, vomiting and sometimes fever can be associated with it. When these symptoms appear, it is strongly recommended to consult a doctor without delay. Most symptoms go away within five to ten days.

Additional information

Media relations
Department Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries
and Food
Tel. : 418 380-2100, extension 3512

Product labels

Austria – Investigators still looking for source of outbreak of E. coli infections in Austria

Food Safety News

Austrian authorities are investigating an outbreak of Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) infections that has affected a handful of people.

Between September and December 2020, six people fell ill with infections from E. coli O146:H28. Those sick live in five federal states. Two people needed hospital treatment.

As yet, there is no indication as to the source of the outbreak, according to the Austrian Agency for Health and Food Safety (AGES). It is understood other countries in Europe have not reported related infections.

Research – Escherichia coli in flour – sources, risks and prevention

Click to access escherichia-coli-in-flour-sources-risks-and-prevention.pdf

RASFF Alerts – STEC E.coli – Veal Meat – Chilled Fillet Americain

European Food Alerts


shigatoxin-producing Escherichia coli in veal meat from the Netherlands in the Netherlands


shigatoxin-producing Escherichia coli (O26 stx2+ eae+ /25g) in chilled filet americain from Belgium in Belgium

Research – Animal petting zoos as sources of Shiga toxin‐producing Escherichia coli, Salmonella and extended‐spectrum β‐lactamase (ESBL)‐producing Enterobacteriaceae

Wiley Online

Animal petting zoos and farm fairs provide the opportunity for children and adults to interact with animals, but contact with animals carries a risk of exposure to zoonotic pathogens and antimicrobial‐resistant bacteria. The aim of this study was to assess the occurrence of Shiga toxin‐producing Escherichia coli (STEC), Salmonella, extended‐spectrum β‐lactamase (ESBL)‐producing Enterobacteriaceae and methicillin‐resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in animal faeces from six animal petting zoos and one farm fair in Switzerland. Furthermore, hygiene facilities on the venues were evaluated. Of 163 faecal samples, 75 contained stx1, stx2 or stx1/stx2 genes, indicating the presence of STEC. Samples included faeces from sika deer (100%), sheep (92%), goats (88%), mouflons (80%), camels (62%), llamas (50%), yaks (50%), pigs (29%) and donkeys (6%), whereas no stx genes were isolated from faeces of calves, guinea pigs, hens, ostriches, ponies, zebras or zebus. Salmonella enterica subsp. enterica serovar Stourbridge (S. Stourbridge) was detected in faecal samples from camels. A total of four ESBL‐producing E. coli strains were isolated from faeces of goats, camels and pigs. PCR and sequencing identified the presence of blaCTX‐M‐15 in three and blaCTX‐M‐65 in one Ecoli. Antimicrobial resistance profiling using the disk diffusion method revealed two multidrug‐resistant (MDR) E. coli with resistance to ciprofloxacin, gentamicin and azithromycin, all of which are critically important drugs for human medicine. Multilocus sequence typing identified E. coli ST162, E. coli ST2179, extraintestinal high‐risk E. coli ST410 and E. coli ST4553, which belongs to the emerging extraintestinal clonal complex (CC) 648. No MRSA was detected. On all animal petting venues, there were inadequacies with regard to access to hygiene information and handwashing hygiene facilities. This study provides data that underscore the importance of hygiene measures to minimize the risk of transmission of zoonotic pathogens and MDR, ESBL‐producing E. coli to visitors of animal petting venues.

Canada – FoodNet Canada tables and figures 2019.


EXECUTIVE SUMMARYThe Public Health Agency of Canada’s (PHAC) FoodNet Canada surveillance system is pleased to present this tables and figures report which provides the annual results of our surveillance activities conducted in 2019.The report is based on findings from its sentinel sites in British Columbia, Alberta, and Ontario.It also provides preliminary findings from Quebec, representing a partial year due to their implementation part way through the year in July 2019. The report focuses on trends in enteric pathogen disease rates, as well as trends in the prevalence of these pathogens found on potential disease sources: retail meats, manure from food producing animals and water.It is our hope that this report will be used to inform and shape discussions on food safety issues regarding enteric diseases and their sources.Key findings:In 2019, Campylobacter and Salmonella remained the most common causes of human enteric illness in the FoodNet Canada sentinel sites. Travel continues to bean important factor in the burden of enteric disease. In 2019, approximately 30% of all cases of enteric disease were associated with travel outside of Canada.

Exposure to retail meat products remains a potential source of infection for human enteric illness. However, decreases in the prevalence of certain pathogen-food combinations were observed in 2019. For example, Salmonella on frozen breaded chicken products significantly decreased in 2019 compared to 2018 and is likely associated with interventions implemented at the industry level in 2019.

Other exposures, such as the farm environment and water, are also possible sources of infection for human enteric illness, with differences noted between the sites. For example, Salmonella is commonly found in broiler chicken manure, however, the prevalence significantly increased in BC whereas it significantly decreased in the AB site in 2019, resulting in an overall significant decrease in the combined sites.

The majority of clinical cases of shiga toxigenic Escherichia coli(STEC) were domestically acquired in 2019, with a significant increase in both travel and endemic incidence rates, which is primarily driven by the AB sentinel site who test all STEC-confirmed stool samples for non-O157 serogroups.

In 2019, surface water sampling was initiated for the first time in the ON site for STEC testing. The prevalence of STEC in the ON site (27%) was similar to the combined BC and AB irrigation water prevalence in 2019 (28%).

Continued monitoring of human illness and the potential exposures is important to ensure the continued health and safety of Canadians.The collection and integration of information across all of FoodNet Canada surveillance components (human, retail, on-farm, and water) in an enhanced and standardized way allows for the analysis of sub-type distributions among human cases and potential exposure sources over time. This report will be followed by a comprehensive annual report, which will include more extensive analyses of temporal trends and sub-typing information for an integrated perspective on enteric disease from exposure to illness.

RASFF Alerts – STEC E.coli – Frozen Beef – Frozen Beef Tenderloins

European Food Alerts


shigatoxin-producing Escherichia coli (stx1+ /25g) in frozen beef from Brazil in the Netherlands


shigatoxin-producing Escherichia coli (stx2+ /25g) in frozen beef tenderloins from Brazil in the Netherlands

USA – Feds plan to begin testing research program with romaine lettuce in Arizona

Food Safety News

The FDA is launching a new, temporary testing program for the romaine lettuce from commercial coolers in the Yuma, AZ, growing region. Romaine from the area has been linked to several foodborne illness outbreaks in recent years.

Samples will be tested for Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) and Salmonella spp. as part of ongoing surveillance efforts following the spring 2018 multistate E. coli O157:H7 outbreak of foodborne illness. Since then there have been other outbreaks linked to romaine from the Yuma area and parts of California. Salmonella spp. also commonly causes foodborne illness outbreaks in the United States which have at times been linked to romaine lettuce consumption, according to a statement today from the Food and Drug Administration.

USA – E. coli tainted Raw Milk Recalled

Food Poison Journal

A Washington State dairy is recalling unpasteurized, raw milk from retailers and consumers after state tests showed a sample was contaminated with Shiga toxin-producing E. coli.

Williams Valley Family Farm LLC announced the recall today, warning consumers to stop using the implicated milk.

“The recall was initiated after routine sampling conducted by the Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA) revealed the presence of toxin-producing E. coliin retail raw whole milk. . . . Williams Valley Family Farm LLC and WSDA continue to work jointly to address the source of the problem,” company officials of the Clayton, WA, dairy said in the recall notice.

There is concern that consumers may have significant portions of the milk in their homes because its best-by dates range from Feb. 8 through Feb. 17.

New Zealand – Annual report concerning Foodborne Diseases in New Zealand 2019


Annual report concerning Foodborne Diseases in New Zealand 2019

ESR Report FW20013

Human health surveillance and its relationship to foodborne illness is essential for informing the strategic direction that New Zealand Food Safety (NZFS) takes and regulatory measures it puts in place to minimise foodborne illness in New Zealand and overseas consumers.

The annual ESR foodborne disease reports are critical, allowing NZFS to monitor trends in foodborne illness in New Zealand by describing in a consistent manner evidence from notifications, case enquiries, outbreak investigations and other epidemiological studies of human enteric diseases.

This report forms part of a series providing a consistent source of data annually to monitor trends on foodborne illness in New Zealand. The series can be found here. The reduction of human cases of foodborne campylobacteriosis is a top priority for NZFS. The current performance target is a reduction of rates of foodborne campylobacteriosis by 10% from 88.4in 2015to 79.6 by the end 2020.

Progress toward this target is reported in the section entitled Reporting against targets. The surveillance data indicates that during the last ten years the rates of foodborne campylobacteriosis are consistently, albeit slowly, decreasing. NZFS underscores that both total numbers of campylobacteriosis cases and rates per 100,000 population notified in 2019 are the lowest since 1992.Since 2015, NZ diagnostic laboratories have started to replace traditional culture-based methods for enteric pathogens by culture-independent diagnostic tests(CIDT)using molecular polymerase chain reaction.

In 2019, about 78% of human faecal samples were tested using CIDT. However, different laboratories are using different CIDT and six DHBs continue to use culture-based testing methods for enteric pathogens. The implication of improved sensitivity and changes in number of tests is well described in the introduction to the 2019 report. Shiga toxigenic Escherichia coli (STEC) remains a focus for NZFS. A continuing sharp increase in notification of STEC infections is evident, despite the absence of evidence that foodborne sources are increasing. The cause of this is likely to be related to implementation of CIDT and an increase in the number of faecal samples tested for STEC as all community faecal specimens are now screened for STEC.

The selection of diseases covered in the report is based on the potential of the disease to be caused by foodborne transmission and availability of national sources of information related to the disease. The enhanced analysis of risk factors and presentation of the information has resulted in an improved description of foodborne outbreaks in the 2019 report.

Although, some outbreaks reported as foodborne with unidentified food source might be attributed to other routes of transmission, such as water, animal contact or person to person. NZFS and ESR will further continue to improve the analysis and presentation of foodborne human illness surveillance and investigation data in future reports.