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29th September 2014  Content supplied by: Food Safety Summit

Food Safety Summit Outbreak Most Likely C. perfringens

It shouldn't happen to food safety professionals but unfortunately for some attendees at the 2014 Food Safety Summit conference in Baltimore earlier this year it did. A recently released report by the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene indicates the buffet lunch served during the meeting caused 216 delegates to develop gastroenteritis.

The most likely cause is thought to be a chicken masala dish, although there was only a delay of three hours between cooking and serving, it may not have been held at sufficiently high enough temperature to prevent bacterial growth. Whilst no buffet food was available for testing, time of onset and the symptoms of diarrhoea with 10% reporting vomiting would be consistent with illness caused by Clostridium perfringens.

Some stool specimens were found positive for Clostridium perfringens enterotoxin type A using Oxoid’s Perfringens EnteroToxin – Reversed Passive Latex Agglutination test kit (PET-RPLA). PCR testing on selected isolates found alpha toxin cpa gene in all 10 suspect colonies, the enterotoxin cpe gene was detected in 1 suspect colony, and the beta toxin cpb gene was not detected in any suspect colonies.

Download the full report here - www.foodsafetysummit.com/images/PDF/OutbreakReport.pdf


Date Published: 29th September 2014

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