Public in France warned over contaminated steak hachés

Steak hachés have been pulled from supermarket shelves in the south west of France over fears they have been contaminated by E.Coli bacteria.

Public in France warned over contaminated steak hachés
Photo: AFP
Several French supermarket chains have pulled packets of steak hachés from the shelves in the south west of the country as a result of an E.Coli contamination. 
Supermarkets Leclerc, Auchan, Intermaché and Super U, were advised by food processing company Vignasse et Donney to remove packets of steak haché – the popular minced beef steak widely eaten in France, especially by children – after a strain of E.Coli was found in the meat. 
Five French departments have been affected by the contamination: the Pyrénées-Atlantiques, Landes, Gers, Lot-et-Garonne and Hautes-Pyrénées, and butchers in these areas were also warned that the product should not be sold. 

Photo: AFP 

Consumers in the affected areas are being asked to return steak hachés bought between June 27th and July 5th with batch numbers 17178 and 17179. 
The E.Coli bacteria can lead to diarrhea, abdominal pain and vomiting, and is sometimes accompanied by a fever. It is particularly dangerous for children. Certain virulent strains can, in rare cases lead to death.
People who have already eaten the steak hachés and are experiencing any of the above symptoms have been advised to immediately consult their doctor. 
The processing company also advised consumers that they can also look for clues as to whether the meat is contaminated by checking if it has lost its pink colouring. 
The incident comes soon after the ex-boss of frozen food suppliers SEB, a company accused of producing contaminated steak hachés was sentenced to three years in prison last month after his product caused around 15 children to fall seriously ill and left one boy permanently disabled in 2011.


French supermarkets recall reblochon cheeses after children hospitalised

French authorities ordered a recall of reblochon cheeses on Monday after six young children were hospitalised with E.coli infections traced to a producer.

French supermarkets recall reblochon cheeses after children hospitalised
Photo: AFP

One of the children, who ranged from 18 months to three years old, was still in hospital after eating the raw-milk cheeses made by Chabert at its site in Cruseilles, eastern France.

The agriculture and health ministries said in a joint statement that reblochon cheeses made at the site, sold under a variety of brands, were being recalled “as a precautionary measure”.

The recall was first announced Friday but only involved Chabert cheeses sold by the Leclerc supermarket chain under an in-house brand called “Nos régions ont du talent”.

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But since then Carrefour and Intermarché supermarkets have also recalled the reblochon cheeses made under their own in-house brands “Reflets de France” and “Itinéraire des Saveurs”.

The hospitalised children had begun having kidney complications, while a seventh child was also infected but did not require additional treatment.

“Investigations are continuing at the company and with its milk suppliers to determine the exact source of the E.coli 026 contamination,” the ministries said, referring to the specific strain of the potentially fatal bacteria.

Authorities also urged parents not to let young children eat raw-milk cheese, just a few weeks after a recall of camembert cheeses following 
inspections at a producer which revealed E.coli contamination, though no illnesses were reported.

The reblochon recall comes as US authorities battle the biggest E.coli outbreak since 2006, warning people not to eat romaine lettuce unless they are certain of its origin after dozens of people got sick, including one person who died.