- A host of Cadbury chocolates have been recalled in the United Kingdom over fears of potential contamination by Listeria monocytogenes, a bacteria that causes infection with flu-like symptoms.
- Listeriosis is a serious infection usually caused by eating food contaminated with the bacterium Listeria monocytogenes.
- The bacteria exists in the environment.
- It is found in water, soil and some animals’ intestines.
- While these are the most common sources of a listeria infection, it has also been known to spread from infected humans and close contact with farm animals.
- The infection is most likely to sicken pregnant women and their newborns, adults aged 65 or older, and people with weakened immune systems.
- The World Health Organization characterises it as a serious but preventable and treatable disease.
- While it is a relatively rare disease with 0.1-10 cases per million people a year.
- The high rate of death associated with this infection makes it a significant public health concern.
SOURCE: THE HINDU, THE ECONOMIC TIMES, PIB