On Thursday 21 July the UK Government issued an update on the ongoing investigation into an outbreak of E. coli O157 which has left two people dead and has been linked to prepared salads.
Public Health England (PHE) confirmed that, as of Thursday, 160 cases of this strain of E. coli had been identified with 153 cases in England, 6 in Wales and 1 in Scotland. Dr Isabel Oliver, director of PHE’s field epidemiology service, said, “We are pleased to see a very significant reduction in the number of cases with 9 reported over the past week. This could indicate that we are over the worst of this outbreak, with those affected reporting the last onset of symptoms on 5 July.”
PHE investigations have shown that several of the affected individuals ate mixed salad leaves including rocket leaves prior to becoming unwell. “The source of the outbreak remains unconfirmed and under investigation; we are not ruling out other food items,” stressed Dr Oliver. “It’s important to be aware that no individual wholesaler, supplier, retailer, or restaurant has been confirmed as the source and currently the Food Standard Agency’s investigations focus on the distribution of mixed salad leaves to wholesale and not supermarkets.”
She added, “All food sample results to date have been negative for E.coli O157, but it’s important to be aware that where food has been contaminated with E.coli O157, it is not always possible to identify the bacteria on food testing. A small number of wholesalers continue to be advised to cease adding some non-UK salad leaves to their mixed salad products pending further investigations.”
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The post Government issues update at E. coli investigation continues appeared first on Hort News on 27 July 2016.