Meat slicing machines likely source of deadly Maple Leaf listeria contamination
September 9, 2008
Maple Leaf Foods, Canada’s largest meat processor, has released an update regarding its investigation into the likely cause of a recent Listeria monocytogenes contamination that has been linked to 19 deaths.
Following inspection of the plant and product tests by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, areas were found where bacteria may accumulate deep inside the slicing machines and avoid the sanitisation process. Other environmental factors such as a drain and the location of a freight elevator may have also contributed to the contamination, the company said.
The listeriosis outbreak led Maple Leaf last month to pull more than 200 products from store shelves in one of Canada’s largest food recalls, while the affected Toronto plant was shut down.