Published: Fri, July 13, 2018
Business | By Eloise Houston

Listeria death in Victoria linked to strain found in recalled frozen vegetables

Listeria death in Victoria linked to strain found in recalled frozen vegetables

Food Standards Australia and New Zealand have recalled nine products - a mix of corn, carrot, pea and broccoli ranges - that originated from Britain, Belgium and Hungary.

In February, six people died after a national outbreak of Listeria linked to a rockmelon supplier.

The company's statement was circulated on social media and although there were serious concerns about food safety, many social media users wanted to know, "who is buying frozen rice".

The Hungarian Food Safety Agency also recalled some of their products as a precautionary measure recently.

The notice on the Food Standards Agency states that although the bacteria can be killed through cooking, sweetcorn can be eaten raw and could be a potential threat.

So the Woolies uncooked savoury rice definitely had its market.

National distribution, only products with country of origin of Belgium, United Kingdom or Hungary, all other countries not affected.

Carstensen says the product has been tested and found to be compliant.

"The products affected contain a particularly unsafe strain of listeria and are being recalled as a precautionary measure to ensure consumers are protected", chief executive Peter May said.

The products were being sold at Woolworths, Aldi, IGA, Campbells and independent grocery stores under brand names Woolworths Essentials, Black and Gold and Market Fare.

Listeria starts with flu-like symptoms before developing into septicemia and the swelling of the brain - if left untreated. It has branches and customers worldwide, including many retailers in Europe. Local produce should be simple to identify and consumers can be reassured that it is not involved in the pathogen contamination and recall.

"If you are a healthy adult you'd have to eat a lot of frozen vegetables to make you sick because most of the potentially unsafe bacteria is killed by the acid in your stomach", Mr Kennedy said.

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