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Listeria alarm in several regions over tainted wurstel

Firm pulls products linked to cases of listeriosis

(ANSA) - ROME, SEP 28 - A listeria food poisoning alarm has been raised in several Italian regions over a batch of chicken wurstel sausages reportedly containing the bug.
    "The attention remains high following a rise in clinical cases of food listeriosis registered in several Italian regions, due to contamination by the Listeria bacterium," the health ministry said.
    An investigation has uncovered a correlation between some of the clinical cases and the presence of the bacterium in chicken wϋrstels produced by the company Agricola Tre Valli, the ministry said.
    The presence of the Listeria ST 155 strain has also been confirmed by sampling carried out at the plant.
    Te company has taken all steps to safeguard the public by withdrawing the batches that have come out positive and, applying the principle of maximum precaution, also pulling all those produced before September 12 this year.
    Investigations are also continuing into other products that might be linked to the human cases of listeriosis.
    Listeria monocytogenes is the species of pathogenic bacteria that causes the infection listeriosis. It is a facultative anaerobic bacterium, capable of surviving in the presence or absence of oxygen.
    It can grow and reproduce inside the host's cells and is one of the most virulent foodborne pathogens: 20 to 30% of foodborne listeriosis infections in high-risk individuals may be fatal.
    In the European Union, listeriosis follows an upward trend that began in 2008, causing 2,161 confirmed cases and 210 reported deaths in 2014, 16% more than in 2013. Listeriosis mortality rates are also higher in the EU than for other foodborne pathogens. (ANSA).


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