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Jindi Cheese Linked to Listeria Outbreak

The Jindi Cheese company has voluntarily recalled batches of its brie and camembert, after the first cases of illness were identified before Christmas.

Jindi make soft cheeses an investigation by the Victorian Health Department – prompted after receiving seven new cases this week - has found a "strong link'' between the bacteria and the Jindi cheese.

Eight of the cases are from Victoria, including an 84-year-old man who died, and six are from NSW, two from Queensland  and one case from both Tasmania and WA.

Symptoms of listeria infection can take up to 70 days to appear and so although the first cases were identified in December, further cases continue to emerge.

In November, an 84-year-old Victorian man and a 44-year-old Tasmanian man both died from listeria, while a NSW woman - aged in her 30s - miscarried at about the same time.

The listeria outbreak is a nightmare for Jindi, which was recently sold for $20 million to French dairy giant Lactalis.

Listeria causes minor or no symptoms in the vast majority of healthy people who may contract it, but is particularly dangerous for some vulnerable groups e.g elderly, pregnant, immune deficient.

Jindi has recalled of all of its products - including its Coles Finest and Wattle Valley-branded cheeses  anything  produced before January 6 after health authorities uncovered 18 cases of listeria across the country.

From: The Australian, January 19, 2013