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The 18-Month Listeria Food Outbreak That Started in Canada Has Ended

EMSL Canada provides food testing services to identify mycotoxins and other microbial and chemical contaminants.

Toronto, ON – WEBWIRE

The Canada Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) was the first to issue the food recall warning for cooked, diced chicken that caused the year-and-a-half Listeria outbreak. As of November 2019, there were a total of seven confirmed cases of Listeria monocytogenes in British Columbia, Manitoba and Ontario. Of the seven cases, six were hospitalized with ages ranging from 51 to 97 years old. This product was distributed in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia and likely distributed to other areas.

The recalled product was only sold and distributed to institutions, hotels and restaurants. In this particular outbreak, the diced chicken was supplied to cafeterias, hospitals and nursing homes. The Public Health Agency in Canada reported the strain of Listeria that infected patients in Canada was closely related genetically to the Listeria outbreak that made people sick in the United States, which spread to 13 states.

The final update was released on November 1, 2019 and confirmed that the outbreak was over and investigation was closed. Food Safety News stated that, “Food contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes may not look or smell spoiled but can still cause serious and sometimes life-threatening infections. Anyone who develops symptoms of Listeria infection should seek medical treatment and tell their doctors about possible Listeria exposure.”

EMSL Canada, Inc. offers a wide range of testing services for microbial pathogens and can identify Listeria, Salmonella, E. coli O157H7 and other contaminants. These tests can be utilized to assess raw materials, finished products and production surfaces. Testing is also instrumental for evaluating cleaning and disinfection procedures at processing, production and manufacturing facilities.

In the event that a contaminated product has already caused an outbreak, rapid testing methods from EMSL’s testing laboratories throughout Canada and the United States can facilitate the process of quickly pinpointing its source to prevent further product contamination and illnesses.

To learn more about our food testing services, please visit or, call (800) 220-3675 or email .

About EMSL Canada, Inc.
EMSL Canada is an internationally recognized provider of environmental, indoor air quality and materials testing services and products to professionals and the general public. The company has an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies.

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