The source of the outbreak was identified as ready-to-eat processed meat products manufactured at Enterprise Foods’ Polokwane production facility.
“A number of recent queries and misconceptions regarding the number of listeriosis cases in children have arisen. Since January, 418 children under 28 days and 69 children aged between one month and 14 years contracted the disease.”
The NICD added that since processed meats were recalled last month, there were 24 new confirmed cases, and 81 cases were confirmed in babies.
Tiger Brands spokesperson Nevashnee Naicker said the past six weeks had not been easy for the company
“Our factories are still closed and they closed because we need to know what the criteria to reopen them are.
“We have been following standards set by the government together with everyone else in the industry. We closed our facilities and brought experts in, and are going through those facilities with a fine-tooth comb.”
She said R50 million in income was being lost for every month the plants remain closed. “By the time we reopen, the facilities will be world class and staff will need to be trained to run them on first-class standards,” Naicker added.