Glacier FarmMedia COVID-19 & the Farm

Pork probed for links to Alta. E. coli cases

Wontons sold by an Edmonton company this summer are now being recalled as part of an investigation into E. coli-related illnesses in the province. (Photo courtesy CFIA)

A probe of dozens of cases of E. coli-related illnesses over the summer in Alberta has now led to recalls of certain raw pork cuts and frozen pork products.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency on Thursday announced recalls of all raw pork products sold by Calgary’s V+T Meat and Food between July 14 and Sept. 2 and by Edmonton’s Hiep Thanh Trading between July 10 and Sept. 3. The products were distributed only in Alberta.

Consumers, food service establishments, retailers, distributors and manufacturers in Alberta were advised not to eat, serve, use, or sell the listed products because the raw pork may be contaminated with E. coli O157:H7.

CFIA on Friday announced a separate recall of frozen pork spring rolls, pork buns and pork wontons sold from Vinh Fat Food Products on 97th Street in Edmonton between July 10 and Sept. 5, due to “possible E. coli O157:H7 contamination.”

In both cases, CFIA said, the recalls were “triggered by” an E. coli O157:H7 foodborne outbreak investigation led by Alberta Health Services with support from the CFIA and federal Public Health Agency (PHAC).

From July 15 until Friday, there have been 153 confirmed cases of E. coli-related illness in the province, Alberta Health Services said Friday.

Sources for those cases haven’t been confirmed and it’s not yet known whether all the cases are linked to one outbreak, AHS said. They include 76 in the agency’s Calgary zone and 53 in its Edmonton zone.

Referring to the raw pork products in a release Friday, AHS said testing hasn’t yet found a link between the products and the outbreak, “but the investigation is continuing to determine if they are the source.”

“Further analysis is underway” to see if the raw pork products are linked to some of the E.coli-related illnesses in the province, CFIA said.

In the case of the spring rolls, buns and wontons, CFIA noted Friday no reported illnesses have been tied to the consumption of those products.

“We will continue to work closely with our partners to investigate the source of the E. coli outbreak,” provincial chief medical officer Dr. James Talbot said in the province’s release.

Meanwhile, he said, Alberta residents should “pay close attention to the recall of these products and… practice safe food handling and preparation practices.” — Network



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