Minister Motsoaledi declares listeriosis outbreak over

In this file photo, a business owner is seen returning a bulk of his food including polony and russians to the store following listeriosis outbreak.
In this file photo, a business owner is seen returning a bulk of his food including polony and russians to the store following listeriosis outbreak.
Image: ALAISTER RUSSELL

The deadly listeriosis outbreak has come to an end. This is according to health minister Aaron Motsoaledi who on Monday briefed the media on the developments around the outbreak.

He said based on the fact that there had been no new listeria cases in the past three months, experts had arrived at a conclusion that the worst listeriosis outbreak to ever hit the country is over.

"The conclusion is that the listeriosis outbreak is over," said Motsoaledi.

The food-borne disease, which was detected in some cold meats such as polony and russians, has so far killed about to 200 people. New born babies and pregnant women were among those most affected by the outbreak.

Motsoaledi said consumers were now free to enjoy cold meats, noting that although they were able to tackle the outbreak strand this did not mean listeria is irradiated from the environment. Motsoaledi declared the outbreak on December 5 last year.

Environmental officers and scientists traced the source of the deadly ST6 listeriosis strain at cold meat factory outlets in Germiston, east of Johannesburg, and Polokwane. This was after nine children from a Soweto creche were treated for the disease at the Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital.

The discovery of the source led to Enterprise Foods products including polony, viennas and russians being pulled off from the shelves. 

X