UK agencies warn consumers of “ongoing risk of listeria” for smoked fish

by
editorial staff

Vulnerable consumers have been advised of an ongoing risk of Listeria associated with ready to eat smoked fish.

Food Standards Scotland (FSS), the UKHSA and the Food Standards Agency (FSA) have reinforced their advice to vulnerable groups of consumers in relation to the risks of Listeria monocytogenes infection linked to ready to eat smoked fish.

The agencies advised people who are over 65, pregnant or have a weakened immune system to ensure that ready to eat smoked fish is thoroughly cooked before they eat it due to an ongoing outbreak of Listeria monocytogenes.

An investigation has identified 14 linked cases of listeriosis since 2020, with eight of these since January 2022. Cases have been identified in England and Scotland. The majority of these individuals reported eating ready to eat smoked fish. One case has been a pregnant woman.

“While the risks to the general public of becoming seriously ill due to Listeria are very low, we need people who are vulnerable – specifically those over 65, pregnant women and people with weakened immune systems – to be aware of the ongoing risks of consuming ready to eat smoked fish,” Ian McWatt, the Deputy Chief Executive of Food Standards Scotland, said.

“If anyone from these groups is eating ready to eat smoked fish, we are reminding them of the advice to ensure that it is thoroughly cooked before they eat it including when served as part of a dish,” McWatt added.

“In light of this ongoing outbreak, we are advising pregnant and vulnerable people to only eat ready to eat smoked fish that has been thoroughly cooked to reduce the risk of listeriosis. If you have any concerns about your health please speak to your midwife, GP or hospital specialist team,” Professor Saheer Gharbia, Interim Deputy Director Gastrointestinal Infections and Food Safety at UKHSA, commented.

 

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