EU countries urged to “step up” salmonella monitoring

EU member states are being urged to “step up” their monitoring Salmonella Enteritidis, following the reporting of outbreaks in seven European countries between May and October this year, including a high profile case involving an egg packing centre in Poland.

The new monitoring call has been issued by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) and the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) whose joint report started that the May-October outbreaks resulted in 112 confirmed human cases of Salmonella Enteritidis and 148 probable.

“Cases have been reported by Belgium, Denmark, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and the UK,” they said. “In addition, Croatia reported a cluster of cases, including one death, possibly associated with this outbreak.

“Whole genome sequencing, food and environmental investigations, and trace-back investigations established a link between the outbreak and an egg packing centre in Poland. Evidence suggests eggs as the most likely source of infection.

“Polish competent authorities and member states to which suspect eggs were distributed have now halted distribution.”

ECDC and EFSA have also urged affected countries to continue sharing information on the epidemiological, microbiological and environmental investigations, including issuing relevant notifications using the Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF) and the Early Warning and Response System (EWRS), the latter representing the official channel to notify serious cross border threats to health.

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