Listeriosis Listeria Woolworths

An up-close photo of the bacteria (NICD)

Listeria: Recall that hit Woolworths has affected 107 countries in total

It wasn’t just South Africa that received the tainted produce.

Listeriosis Listeria Woolworths

An up-close photo of the bacteria (NICD)

Supermarket chain Woolworths were forced to pull their frozen savoury rice from the shelves last week following a fresh listeria scare.

However, it wasn’t just the South African market that was affected. Food Safety News report that 107 countries received products that have since been recalled.

What caused the Woolworths listeria recall?

The Greenyard Frozen company have shut down operations at their factory in Baja, Hungary after cells of the listeria bacteria were traced back to the facility.

A total of 47 people are said to have been affected by this outbreak, which investigators believe has claimed a total of nine lives over the last two years.

Frozen green beans and sweetcorn made at the Baja factory are put into the savoury rice mix sold by Woolworths. Elements of the disease were also found in spinach samples as well as by the floor drains of the facility itself.

Woolies are yet to confirm when they will be able to restock their savoury rice but have since informed customers that they can bring the item back to the store in exchange for a full refund.

Greenyard issued a statement at the end of last month, vowing to find the root cause of the outbreak before re-opening their operations.

“We have closed our plant in Hungary and have been conducting an in-depth review of the plant with a view to identifying the root cause of the contamination in full cooperation with the respective authorities and in dialogue with the customer,”

“We will not restart production in our Hungarian facility until we are fully satisfied with the results of these tests.”

What countries have been affected?

The International Food Safety Authorities Network (INFOSAN) confirmed that over 100 countries and territories received implicated products.

The FSN provided this non-extensive list, which details a selection of the nations that have imported the tainted veg over the last two years:

Afghanistan, Angola, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Belgium, Chad, Egypt, France, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Gibraltar, Greece, Hong Kong, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Mauritius, Netherlands, Nigeria, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland and the United Arab Emirates.