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What you can do to reduce the chances of your food being infected with listeria.

Listeria monocytogenes (listeria) is a bacterium that causes an illness called listeriosis. Cases of foodborne illness from listeria are rare, but can involve serious symptoms and even death in certain groups of people.

These include:

  • people with weakened immune systems, such as those suffering from cancer
  • pregnant women and their unborn babies
  • newborn babies
  • elderly people

It’s important to:

    • keep raw and ready-to-eat foods separate to avoid cross -contamination
    • wash fruit and vegetables thoroughly
    • keep chilled ready-to-eat foods cold – make sure your fridge is working properly and is set to 5⁰C or below
    • always use foods by their use-by date
    • follow the storage instructions on the label and use opened foods within two days unless instructions on the packaging say otherwise
    • ready-to-eat food must be eaten within four hours of being taken out of the fridge
    • cook or reheat foods until they are piping hot right through
    • ensure that you follow manufacturer’s instructions in the preparation of all foods

      The types of food listeria can be found in

      Listeria is widespread in the environment and can contaminate a wide range of foods. It is of most concern in chilled ready-to-eat foods that do not require further cooking or reheating, such as:

      • cooked sliced meats
      • cured meats
      • smoked fish
      • cooked shellfish
      • mould-ripened soft cheeses
      • pate
      • pre-prepared sandwiches and salads