News Scan for Feb 25, 2014

Listeria-related recall
BSE in Germany

Outbreak Listeria strain found in cheese products

Officials have identified in cheese products produced by Roos Foods of Kenton, Del., the strain of Listeria monocytogenes responsible for a two-state outbreak, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said yesterday. The outbreak has sickened seven people in Maryland and killed a person in California, the CDC said.

Virginia's Division of Consolidated Laboratory Services (DCLS) on Feb 10 had identified L monocytogenes in a sample of Roos Foods' Caujada en Terron (fresh cheese curd) collected from a chain grocery store that had repackaged the cheese, the CDC said. Subsequently, officials collected Roos Foods cheese that was not repackaged at the store, and on Feb 21, the Virginia DCLS also identified the outbreak strain in that prepackaged cheese.

All of the Maryland patients said they had eaten soft or semi-soft Hispanic-style cheese, and all had shopped at different locations of the food store chain whose products had been tested.

On Feb 23 the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said that Roos Foods had voluntarily recalled cheese the company had manufactured or repackaged under the Mexicana, Amigo, Santa Rosa De Lima, and Anita brands. The CDC said recalled cheeses were Cuajada en Terron, Cuajada/Cuajadita Cacera, Cuajada Fresca, Queso Fresca Round, and Queso Dura Viejo.

The products were distributed through retail stores in Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia, the FDA said in its recall notice.
Feb 24 CDC update
Feb 23 FDA recall notice


Atypical BSE type found in German cow

A rare, atypical type of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) was found in a cow at slaughter in Germany, according to a World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) report today.

The cow, which did not display signs of disease, was 11 years, 4 months old at slaughter. H-type BSE was detected by immunoblot tests done as part of routine surveillance, German officials noted in the OIE report. This type is atypical and generally not associated with consumption of BSE-infected feed, the report said. The animal's carcass was destroyed.

"The identified animal did not enter the food channels; at no time it presented any risk to human health," the report states.

Investigations identified eight offspring. Three had already been slaughtered, one was identified as a fallen stock, and four have been traded to another European country. Cattle born on the cow's farm 1 year before its birth to 1 year afterward numbered 371, of which 127 were traded to other nations. The one surviving animal was culled and the carcass destroyed, the report said.
Feb 25 OIE report

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