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ANC calls for investigation into packaging of listeriosis-linked products

180 people have died from this disease.
Listeriosis 180 people have died from this disease.
Image: 123RF/ Vitaliy Vodolazskyy

The African National Congress (ANC) has called for an investigation into the quality of the packaging used in products linked to listeriosis.

“The ANC calls on the South African Bureau of Standards (SABS) to urgently initiate an investigation at various identified food production factories in order to ascertain and establish whether the packaging material used in those products is not substandard and that it conforms to the basic standards of hygiene.

“These food production factories should ensure that the standard of packaging is not of inferior quality; chasing lower production prices at the expense of innocent lives.”

The party said it was “disturbed” by the number of deaths linked to the food-borne disease.

“To us‚ one death is too many. It is for this reason that we make a call to the people of South Africa to remain vigilant and visit health centres as and when they experience the symptoms for immediate treatment. We also urge members of the public to follow the advice given by the Department [of health] to avoid all processed meat products that are sold as ‘ready-to-eat’ in order to prevent the spread of the disease.”

The source of the recent Listeriosis outbreak in the country has been found. Here is what we know so far.

The ANC said it welcomes the recall of products that are implicated‚ including polony‚ viennas‚ Russians and sausages.

“We urge the Department of Health and the Department of Labour to undertake regular visits of all factories dealing with the production of food products to ascertain their conformity of the relevant legislation around health and employment.”

On Sunday‚ Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi named Enterprise’s food production plant in Polokwane‚ Limpopo‚ as the confirmed source of the unique strain of listeria‚ which has caused the world’s biggest documented listeriosis outbreak‚ with 948 confirmed cases and 180 deaths.

Retailers Woolworths and Pick n Pay have since immediately recalled all products linked to listeriosis. Pick n Pay said recalled products will be safely destroyed.

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