Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi has identified the food factory that is the source of the world’s biggest listeria outbreak that has killed more than 180 South Africans.
Scientists have traced the food of origin of the strain of the 948 cases of listeriosis mostly in the most populous province of Gauteng.
South Africa’s National Consumer Commission has ordered the urgent recall of polony and smoked sausages from Enterprise’s Germiston factory and vienna sausages from Rainbow chicken’s Wolwehoek plant.
This includes immediately removing and quarantine the named products from its sales channels and notifying all the trading partners and the appropriate authorities locally and internationally.
The commission urges consumers who have bought the products to quarantine them to avoid cross contamination and to return them to the place of purchase for refund.
Listeria bacteria survives in fridges and an open pack of polony or sausages could contaminate other food nearby.
Immediately after Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi’s briefing yesterday, Pick n Pay and Checkers ,which are two of the largest supermarkets in South Africa, announced the removal the products that may be linked to the listeriosis outbreak from their stores.
The fridges and preparation areas where the food had been stored would be thoroughly cleaned before being used again.
The contaminated meat would be safely destroyed.
The stores which have more than 3 000 outlets in South Africa say a broad range of retailers could be affected.