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Listeria Disinfection and control

Listeria Disinfection and control

Definition and Causes

Listeria monocytogenes (commonly called Listeria) is a type of bacteria often found in food and elsewhere in nature.

Listeria is widespread in the environment—it is found in soil, vegetation, water, sewage, some types of livestock feed and in the feces of humans and animals. Animals and humans can carry the bacteria without knowing it.

Plants and vegetables can become contaminated with Listeria from soil, water and manure-based fertilizers. Farm animals that appear healthy may also carry Listeriaand contaminate foods such as meats and dairy products.

Unlike most bacteria, Listeria can survive and sometimes grow on foods being stored in the refrigerator. Moreover, foods that are contaminated with this bacteria look, smell and taste normal. Listeria can be killed by pasteurization and proper cooking procedures.

You can become infected with the bacteria by eating or drinking contaminated food or beverages. You can also become sick with listeriosis through cross-contamination during food preparation in the kitchen or in the plant where the food was processed.

About five per cent of healthy adults are carriers of Listeria and have no symptoms.


Like other foodborne illnesses, the symptoms of listeriosis mainly involve the gut. They include vomiting, nausea, cramps, muscle aches, diarrhea, severe headache, constipation, and persistent fever.

In serious cases, when the infection spreads to the nervous system, symptoms include

headache,stiff neck,confusion, and loss of balance.

In some instances, these symptoms may be followed by meningoencephalitis (an infection ofthe brain and its surrounding tissues) and/or septicemia (blood poisoning), either of which can result in death.

Listeriosis can be mild or severe. The mild form of foodborne listeriosis usually begins about 3 days after eating heavily contaminated food. For the more serious form of the disease, the incubation period is generally much longer—up to 70 days after exposure.

Some foods are more likely to carry Listeria than others. Those that present a higher risk include raw or contaminated milk, soft cheeses and ready-to-eat meats such as hot dogs, pâté and deli meats. Individuals at high risk, such as pregnant women, the elderly and those with weakened immune systems, should avoid these foods to reduce the risk of becoming infected with listeriosis.

There are certain people more likely than others to get sick from listeriosis

Pregnant women and their unborn/newborn children. Pregnant women, especially those in the third trimester, are particularly at risk for Listeria infection. If a pregnant woman develops listeriosis during the first three months of her pregnancy, she may miscarry. Up to two weeks before a miscarriage, pregnant women may experience a mild flu-like illness with chills, fatigue, headache as well as muscular and joint pain. Listeriosis later on in the pregnancy can result in a stillbirth, premature birth or the birth of an acutely-ill child.

Older adults. The risk increases with age.

People with weakened immune systems, such as those undergoing chemotherapy, transplant patients, those with HIV, diabetics and alcoholics. The highest risk group includes those whose immune systems are highly compromised, such as bone marrow transplant patients, patients with cancers of the blood or lymphnodes and those with AIDS. People with AIDS are at least 300 times more likely to get listeriosis than those with a normal immune system.

Listeria is more likely to cause death than other bacteria that cause food poisoning. In fact, 20 to 30 per cent of foodborne listeriosis infections in high-risk individuals may be fatal. However, it should be noted that listeriosis is a relatively rare disease in Canada.


The infectious people

It’s not likely that the disease is spread person-to-person. Typically, people become infected with listeriosis by eating contaminated food. Pregnant women can pass the infection on to their unborn baby.

The disinfection and control in Listeria during food processing and handling

During the handling of foods in the factories process , especially raw foods such as meat and fish, thoroughly sanitize all surfaces used for food preparation with THE POWERFUL DISINFECTANT "Purity 4®" disinfectant and Don't rinse after.

To avoid cross-contamination, disinfect all knives, cutting boards and utensils used with Purity 4® before using them again.

Thoroughly sanitize the fruits and vegetables with our SMART DISINFECTANT "Miller® products" during the process before frozen and also for fresh one before you eat them.

Defrost food in the refrigerator, in cold water or in the microwave, but never at room temperature.

Keep leftovers for a maximum of four days, but preferably for only two to three days. Reheat leftovers to an internal temperature of 74ºC (165ºF) before eating them.

The Checking of the temperature in your refrigerator using a thermometer to make sure it is at 4ºC (40ºF) or below is very important, because The higher temperature in your refrigerator, is  greats the risk that Listeria may grow in foods. The risk of getting sick increases as the number of bacteria in food rises.

The disinfection with Purity 4® and Miller® for the refrigerator frequently very important. The more often it is sanitize, the less chance there will be for Listeria to be transferred from contaminated food and surfaces to non-contaminated foods.

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