Switzerland sounds alarm over Listeria

The Swiss authorities have ordered butchers in two cantons to stop selling pork from the French company, Coudray. The move comes after the chairman, Olivier Bozo, announced Coudray was withdrawing its products over fears of listeria contamination.

This content was published on January 9, 2000 - 09:51

The Swiss authorities have ordered butchers in two cantons to remove pork imported from the French company, Coudray, from their shelves, over fears they may be contaminated with listeria.

The authorities ordered the removal of French pork products from butcher shops in cantons Geneva and Vaud, after an elderly man and an unborn baby died in France, after becoming infected with the deadly bacteria. Four others are seriously ill.

The ministry of health sounded the alarm after the French food manufacturer, Coudray, admitted that its pork tongues and rillettes – a type of paté – had been exported to Switzerland, Germany, Belgium, Luxemburg and Ireland.

The bacteria is particularly dangerous to pregnant women, children and elderly people.

The Swiss health authorities say the risk of becoming ill through eating infected meat is small, but cannot be ruled out.

The danger is greatest in French-speaking Switzerland, because pork rillettes are not eaten in the German-speaking regions.

Coudray has withdrawn its products from the shelves, and closed its meat plants until at least Tuesday.

From staff and wire reports

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