CFS urges public not to consume smoked salmon manufactured by Polyfood Food

The Centre for Food Safety (CFS) of the Food and Environmental Department today (April 2) announced that a smoked salmon sample taken from Polyfood Food Service Co Ltd was detected with a small amount of Listeria monocytogenes. Members of the public are urged not to consume all smoked salmon produced by the manufacturer concerned, regardless of the brand, batch or packaging. The trade should also stop selling all affected products immediately.

A spokesman for the CFS said, "Upon receipt of a notification from the Macau authorities earlier that a batch of smoked salmon imported from Hong Kong was contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes, the CFS, for the sake of prudence, has immediately instructed the manufacturer concerned, Polyfood Food Service Co Ltd, to recall all affected batches of the product. The Centre has been proactively following up on the incident in the past few days and has taken food and environmental samples for testing. Notification received today stated that Listeria monocytogenes was detected in a smoked salmon sample."

Taking into account the test result, the CFS has further instructed the manufacturer to recall all smoked salmon produced, regardless of the brand and batches, and suspend the relevant production line to carry out thorough cleansing and disinfection.

The spokesman said that the manufacturer concerned has recalled the affected product in accordance with the CFS' earlier instruction. According to the information provided by the manufacturer, the ready-to-eat smoked salmon products returned in the past few days were not limited to the particular batch and brands specified by the CFS earlier. It is believed that the recall of the products is in fact nearly completed. In spite of this, the CFS, for the sake of prudence, reminded members of the public to stop consuming any smoked salmon produced by the manufacturer concerned if they have purchased and still possessed the product. Medical advice should be sought if they feel sick upon consumption of the affected product. CFS staff have inspected major retail outlets and have not found any affected product available for sale so far.

Listeria monocytogenes can be easily destroyed by cooking but can survive and multiply at refrigerator temperatures. Most healthy individuals do not develop symptoms or only have mild symptoms like fever, muscle pain, headache, nausea, vomiting or diarrhoea when infected. However, severe complications such as septicemia, meningitis or even death may occur in newborns, the elderly and those with a weaker immune system. Although infected pregnant women may just experience mild symptoms generally, the infection of Listeria monocytogenes may cause miscarriage, infant death, preterm birth, or severe infection in the newborns.

For enquiries about the recall of the abovementioned products, consumers may call the manufacturer (Tel: 2898 9962). If they are not sure whether the product in their possession was produced by the manufacturer concerned, they can contact the sellers to enquire.

The CFS will alert the local trade of the incident, continue to investigate and follow up on the case. Appropriate actions will be taken to safeguard food safety and public health.

Ends/Thursday, April 2, 2015