The European Commission Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF) has issued a notification that 2 batches of “Crottin De Pays” Goat Cheese from France have been recalled due to high count of Escherichia coli (E. coli) bacteria.
Stated in a press release on Tuesday (9 July), the Singapore Food Agency (SFA) has directed the importer to recall the product as there is import of the implicated product into Singapore.
According to the agency, the implicated goat cheeses have not been distributed to the market for sale, and are stored in the importer’s warehouse.
The agency said that consumers who choose to consume unpasteurised milk cheese must be aware of the risks involved as it is likely to contain more bacteria and other pathogens compared to pasteurised milk. This may include E. coli bacteria, which can cause food poisoning.
As a precaution, vulnerable groups of people, especially young children, pregnant women, elderly persons, or people with chronic illness such as diabetes, should avoid consuming unpasteurised food products. Consumers who do not feel well after consumption of unpasteurised milk cheese should seek medical attention.
According to Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Escherichia coli (E. coli) bacteria normally live in the intestines of people and animals.
Most E. coli are harmless and actually are an important part of a healthy human intestinal tract. However, some E. coli are pathogenic, meaning they can cause illness, either diarrhea or illness outside of the intestinal tract. The types of E. coli that can cause diarrhea can be transmitted through contaminated water or food, or through contact with animals or persons.
SFA noted that the key to preventing foodborne illnesses lies in good food hygiene and food safety practices.
It further advised consumers to:
- Thoroughly cook raw food from animal sources.
- Keep raw food separate from vegetables, fruits, cooked and ready-to-eat food.
- Avoid unpasteurised milk or foods made from unpasteurised milk.
- Wash hands, utensils, or food preparation surfaces before and after handling