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Recall initiated: Infectious bacteria in sausages and meat products possible


Manufacturer of sausage and meat products has to recall several 100 tons of meat
There are always cases in which our food is contaminated with bacteria during manufacture, storage or transport. It has now become known that sausage and meat products from Geretsried's large butcher Sieber, contaminated with so-called listeria, are to be withdrawn from the market as part of a recall campaign.

Studies have now found samples of listeria in ham and sausage from the Geretsried large butcher Sieber. The responsible district administrator Josef Niedermeier confirmed this in an interview with the Bavarian Radio (BR). The company responded by recalling the contaminated products.

Listeria disease harmless to healthy people
Listeria are rod-shaped, gram-positive, non-endospore-forming, facultative anaerobic bacteria of the genus Listeria. Experts explain that listeria can also reproduce at low temperatures, for example in the refrigerator. Boiling, frying, sterilizing and pasteurizing, however, kill the bacteria. Listeria infection is usually harmless in healthy people. The symptoms that occur are often flu-like. In the case of an illness, fever and muscle pain, vomiting and diarrhea usually occur.

Older people, infants and pregnant women are particularly at risk from listeria
However, there are also people who are particularly at risk from an illness. For risk groups, such as the elderly or immunocompromised people as well as infants and pregnant women, an infection can have dangerous consequences. Early treatment is made more difficult because the symptoms often only appear up to eight weeks after consumption, explains District Administrator Josef Niedermaier.

Listeria found were below the permissible limit
Sampling at the meat product factory in Sieber showed that although listeria was found there, it was below the permissible limit value, emphasized District Administrator Josef Niedermaier in his interview with Bavarian Radio. Despite the statement, the district office ordered an oral ban on selling meat and sausage products from the affected company on Friday evening. That same night, the company's management received the ban in writing, added the Niedermaier.

District Administrator disagrees with statements about Listeria cases in 2012
The district administrator Niedermaier, however, contradicted various reports, which had claimed that an incident with listeria had already occurred in the butcher shop in 2012. These statements are fundamentally wrong and do not correspond to the truth. The district administrator explained that the first case of food contamination by listeria was detected at the Sieber Geretsried plant at Easter 2016. The company then immediately tried in close cooperation with the responsible veterinary office to identify the possible causes of the contamination. After that, possible sources were switched off. However, the latest test results have led the office to actually impose a sales ban, the expert says.

Several hundred tons of meat in Germany, Austria and Switzerland are part of the recall
The recall of the food affects several 100 tons of meat, explains District Administrator Niedermaier. The products had previously been delivered to retailers, but also to some canteens and canteen kitchens throughout Germany, Austria and Switzerland. The management of the large butcher Sieber cooperatively reacted to the trade ban and immediately took all necessary measures, adds the district administrator.

There seem to be serious problems in food production
However, some consumer protection experts see this incident as an indication that there are more serious problems in the food production of the butcher shop. SPD consumer protection expert Florian von Brunn said in an interview with Bavarian Radio: "A large number of listeria infections that the Robert Koch Institute has investigated may be due to Sieber products." According to a press release from the Ministry of Consumer Protection, the recognized Robert Koch Institute (RKI) suspects a connection between listeriosis diseases and the product "Original Bayerisches Wammerl". The experts would have been very likely to have been involved in a so-called “listeriosis outbreak” since 2012. (as)

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