Experts Warn Against Campylobacter Outbreak

CampylobacterIn Britain, campylobacter is considered as one of the most common causes to trigger food poisoning. An analysis of health data has reflected more than 600,000 cases of food poisoning in 2010 all over England and Wales.

Prior to this, 2008 witnessed three outbreaks of undercooked chicken liver pate. Afterwards, the figure experienced a significant hike with 9 and 14 outbreaks in 2009 and 2010, respectively. The figures suggested that 14 out of 18 outbreaks were observed at different catering venues, whereas 13 cases were believed to have an association with chicken or duck liver pate. In addition, seven cases were acknowledged at wedding receptions at hotels and banqueting venues and were mainly inspired by catering services at hotels, clubs and restaurants.

According to experts, poultry livers serve an active source of Campylobacter as the bacteria tend to survive in the liver. Further, they suggested cooking poultry meat adequately in order to combat the possibilities of infection. Diarrhea, stomach pains and cramps, fever, body aches as well as a feeling of sickness are common symptoms of food poisoning.

“Unfortunately, levels of Campylobacter in most raw chicken are high, so it's really important that chefs cook livers thoroughly to kill any bacteria, even if recipes call for them to be seared”, explained the head of Foodborne Disease Strategy at the FSA, Bob Martin, while suggesting caterers to practice best standards of hygiene during cooking, especially handling of poultry livers in order to prevent cross contamination with Campylobacter.

In a statement, the Health Protection Agency confirmed the occurrence of around 18 Campylobacter infection outbreaks in England up till now, where around 443 people have suffered an array of terrible symptoms.