French Polynesia – Salmonella prompts Tahiti chicken cull


There has been another salmonella outbreak in French Polynesia, prompting the culling of 12,000 chickens.

A statement by the producer SCA Heia Tau Arii says tests showed the presence of salmonella in eggs which are banned from being sold.

The company in Taravao then proceeded to cull the chickens and to close the building where they had been farmed.

UK – Scotland – Food Standards Scotland statement on the release of the Dunsyre Blue E. coli O157 Incident Management Team report

Food Standards Scotland

29 March 2017

Food Standards Scotland, as a member of the Incident Management Team involved in producing the report issued by Health Protection Scotland today (29 March), fully supports the report’s findings.

The report concludes that Dunsyre Blue cheese was the source of the E. coli O157 outbreak in the summer of 2016 which led to 17 people being hospitalised and sadly, one fatality.

The outbreak led to further investigations of cheese produced by Errington Cheese Ltd and of the production processes in place at the time. The report concludes that:

“Potentially pathogenic E. coli were able to enter and survive the cheese production process at the food business. Positive results were obtained for cheese produced over a period of four months, indicating a systematic potential for STEC to enter the process and contaminate final products. 


Canada – E. coli Outbreak Linked to Robin Hood Flour Sickens 25 in Canada March 29, 2017 by News Desk Leave a Comment

ecoliFood Poisoning Bulletin

An E. coli O121 outbreak linked to Robin Hood flour in Canada has sickened at least 25 people, according to the Public Health Agency of Canada. All patients identified in this outbreak have samples with E. coli bacteria that match genetically. This outbreak is reminiscent of the 2016 E. coli outbreak in the United States linked to General Mills flour. And it’s another reminder that flour is a raw agricultural product, can be contaminated with pathogenic bacteria, and should never be eaten raw.


Research – Nuggets of Wisdom: Salmonella Enteritidis Outbreaks and the Case for New Rules on Uncooked Frozen Processed Chicken

Journal of Food Protection

In 2014 and 2015, three Canadian Salmonella serotype Enteritidis outbreak investigations implicated uncooked, frozen, processed chicken products produced at the same establishment, namely establishment A. In November 2014, a sustained increase in the number of reported domestically acquired Salmonella Enteritidis cases in Ontario led to the first outbreak investigation, which implicated uncooked, frozen, processed chicken products produced at establishment A. In June 2015, the identification of pulsed-field gel electrophoresis patterns that had not been previously reported in Canada led to a national Salmonella Enteritidis investigation. Of 51 cases reported nationally, 35 were from Ontario. Uncooked, frozen, processed chicken products produced at establishment A were identified as the source of the outbreak, and public health action was taken as a result of this second investigation. In September 2015, a sustained increase in the number of domestically acquired Salmonella Enteritidis PT13a cases in Ontario led to a third outbreak investigation, which identified a total of 36 PT13a cases. Uncooked, frozen, processed chicken products produced at establishment A were again identified as the source of the outbreak. Outbreaks have been linked to uncooked, frozen, processed chicken products since the late 1990s. Information collected during the three outbreak investigations, and from other jurisdictions, suggests that the breaded and prebrowned appearance of the product, as well as factors related to product packaging and marketing, result in consumer misperception that this raw product is cooked. This misperception may result in mishandling and improper cooking. The three outbreaks described in this article highlight the potential ongoing risks to consumers from these products and support interventions to prevent contamination at the source level and infection at the consumer level.

Research – Prevalence and Antimicrobial Susceptibility of Enterobacteriaceae Isolated from Retail Pepper in Vietnam


CDC Photo

Journal of Food Protection


To investigate the microbial quality of retail pepper in Vietnam, the enumeration and detection of Enterobacteriaceae and the screening of cefotaxime (CTX)–resistant coliforms were performed by using 84 commercial samples. Although Enterobacteriaceae were isolated from 78 samples, the number of Enterobacteriaceae was lower than 1.0 log CFU/g in 46 samples. For the detection of Enterobacteriaceae with the International Organization for Standardization methods, Salmonella spp., Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Cronobacter sakazakii, and Enterobacter cloacae complex were isolated from 5, 12, 36, 19, and 30 samples, respectively. During screening of CTX-resistant coliforms, K. pneumoniae, C. sakazakii, and E. cloacae complex were isolated from 8, 1, and 21 samples, respectively. Seven K. pneumoniae and seven E. cloacae complex isolates obtained in the screening of CTX-resistant coliforms were resistant to at least one of the three third-generation cephalosporins (CTX, ceftazidime, and cefpodoxime). Moreover, one E. cloacae complex cluster IV and all K. pneumoniae isolates were positive for extended-spectrum β-lactamase genes or plasmid-mediated AmpC β-lactamase genes or both. Additionally, two extended-spectrum β-lactamase–producing K. pneumoniae isolates and one AmpC β-lactamase–producing E. cloacae complex cluster IV isolate were positive for the plasmid-mediated quinolone resistance determinants and also had amino acid alterations in the quinolone resistance–determining regions of GyrA and ParC. Furthermore, 10 E. cloacae complex isolates were positive for the plasmid-mediated fosfomycin resistance gene fosA. As pepper is often consumed without a heating process, the possible spread to humans of foodborne, opportunistic, and nosocomial infection pathogens or resistance genes from foods prepared or seasoned with pepper cannot be excluded. Therefore, it is necessary to handle pepper by using hygienic conditions during the cultivation, harvesting and processing steps.

Canada – Robin Hood brand All Purpose Flour, Original recalled due to E. coli O121


Ottawa, March 28, 2017 – Smucker Foods of Canada Corp. is recalling Robin Hood brand All Purpose Flour, Original from the marketplace due to possible E. coli O121 contamination. Consumers should not consume the recalled product described below.

Recalled products

Brand Name Common Name Size Code(s) on Product UPC
Robin Hood All Purpose Flour, Original 10 kg Lot codes containing
BB/MA 2018 AL 17
and 6 291 548
0 59000 01652 8

Canada – B.C. oyster industry reeling after more than 300 consumers fall ill

The Province Vibrio

The federal government has closed oyster farming at seven diverse locations in southern B.C. waters, and several other commercial growers have voluntarily stopped selling amidst the worst norovirus outbreak to ever hit the industry.

To date, a total of 304 illnesses have been reported in B.C., Alberta, and Ontario from eating raw or undercooked oysters from the West Coast, said Darlene Winterburn, executive director of the Comox-based B.C. Shellfish Growers’ Association.