- Listeria or Listeriosis can continue to multiply in uncooked food kept in the fridge. This is why processed meats‚ smoked meats and soft cheeses that are not cooked are often linked to outbreaks.
- Analysis and surveillance on the products are being carried out
- It presents symptoms like muscle aches, fever, diarrhea, confusion and convulsions
Uganda National Buerau of Standards (UNBS) has temporarily stopped importation of all meat products from South Africa.
This follows outbreak of Listeriosis that is linked to pre-packed and ready to eat meat products. According to the Communications Officer for UNBS, Godwin Bonge Muhwezi, the import inspectors at border points have been notified to withhold consignments of all meat products.
“Consumers should avoid buying the meat products originating from South Africa until they are cleared by UNBS. We shall continue enforcing standards to protect consumer health, safety and environment against dangerous sub-standard products.
Listeriosis is food poisoning caused by eating food contaminated with Listeria bacteria. The microscopic bacteria are sometimes difficult to detect. People with weak immune system, children, elderly and pregnant mothers are highly at risk of contracting the disease.
Top: Gift Erajo, a worker at beef factory in Arua and How the Listeria bacteria looks like. Photo by Aluma Aribo and Internet photo
Since the outbreak of the Listeriosis, 180 people have been killed in South Africa. Other 940 cases of infections have been reported across South Africa. The products that are mainly affected include hot dogs, sausages, ready to eat deli meat and refrigerated pates.
The disease outbreak was first identified from Enterprise Food Factory in Polokwane. It is advisable that cooked food must be kept separate from raw food and utensils used on raw food must not touch cooked food‚ in order to avoid cross-contamination.