Greater than 220 outbreaks had been reported to the Centre for Meals Security (CFS) in Hong Kong this previous one year.

The CFS of the Meals and Environmental Hygiene Division got 229 experiences of meals poisoning outbreaks linked to companies that affected 632 folks. Below 200 outbreaks had been reported in 2019 nonetheless extra folks fell in wretched health than in 2020.

The different of outbreaks linked to takeaway meals increased from 36, or 19.5 p.c of the total, sickening 236 folks in 2019 to 128, or 55.9 p.c, affecting 331 folks in 2020. This expand used to be primarily attributable to one incident traced to sandwiches.

The agency eminent that since the COVID-19 pandemic, takeaway meals became extra standard among the public.

Bacterial foodborne agents remained the leading reason in 90 p.c of outbreaks in 2020 with three quarters triggered by Salmonella, followed by Vibrio parahaemolyticus and Bacillus cereus.

Viruses accounted for 7 p.c of all incidents with Norovirus primarily involved. Pure toxin instances equivalent to mushroom toxins and ciguatera and chemical ones fancy calcium oxalate poisoning contributed to the closing outbreaks.

Well-known outbreak traced to sandwiches


Contamination by raw meals or by meals handlers and coarse keeping temperature had been the three most normally identified contributing factors.

In Might well perhaps 2020, the CFS used to be truly helpful of a virulent disease linked to eating pre-packaged sandwiches of the the same designate, engrossing 236 folks.

Stool samples of 42 affected folks yielded Salmonella. One sufferer required intensive care and the blood specimen grew Salmonella Enteritidis. Community D Salmonella used to be moreover detected in an unconsumed sandwich equipped by a sufferer.

Sandwiches had been produced by a native meals manufacturing facility. An investigation revealed a different of contributing factors to the outbreak, including ready-to-utilize substances being depraved by raw substances and meals handlers, coarse temperature throughout transport of the sandwiches to retail stores, and coarse storage temperature of carried out merchandise at the temperature probability zone permitting pathogens to develop.

The manufacturer didn’t provide the production and expiry date on the trace of sandwiches for staff and buyer data. A sandwich sample still from an outlet tested particular for Community D Salmonella.

CFS truly helpful the manufacturing facility and retail stores to end the sale of all sandwiches and develop thorough cleansing and disinfection. The manufacturing facility operator has since ceased working the involved meals alternate.

In September 2020, seven outbreaks engrossing 19 folks had been reported, engrossing takeaway lobster noodles equipped from a restaurant. A sufferer’s stool sample grew Vibrio parahaemolyticus.

An investigation revealed the cooked lobsters had been ready too a ways upfront to cater for the high predict throughout busy hours, and can need been depraved by meals handlers and diversified raw seafood. The place used to be cleaned and disinfected and no additional linked incidents had been got.

Packaging particular for COVID-19 virus


In diversified areas, this previous month a sample from the packaging of frozen crocodile spare ribs imported from Thailand to Hong Kong used to be stumbled on to be particular for the COVID-19 virus.

CFS got a notification from the Centre for Neatly being Protection of the Division of Neatly being that among the environmental samples still at the home of a confirmed coronavirus affected person, a test from the product’s packaging used to be particular for the virus.

The agency talked about the sample used to be seemingly to were depraved at the place of this particular person.

CFS still 103 samples from crocodile merchandise, which included 41 meals and 62 packaging swabs, from storage points, warehouses and retail stores of the seller involved for testing. Results confirmed all samples had been detrimental for the COVID-19 virus and the implicated firm used to be allowed to resume product sales.

CFS has stepped up precautionary measures, including enhanced testing of diversified kinds of frozen meals and their packaging imported from diversified international locations and regions, which contains taking samples at chilly stores of importers. The agency talked about this would presumably presumably continue surveillance on imported frozen meals and packaging to video show the probability of the unfold of the COVID-19 virus by such merchandise.

Up to the end of Might well perhaps, larger than 10,000 meals samples and packaging had been still to envision for coronavirus. Results, including 40 crocodile merchandise imported from Thailand, had been all detrimental.

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