Campylobacter continues to be the most commonly reported cause of bacterial infectious intestinal disease in Scotland, with about 6,000 cases reported per year since 2009, according to a report.
Food Standards Agency in Scotland (FSAS) and Health Protection Scotland (HPS) published the first findings on infectious intestinal diseases (IID) last week.
The main source of Campylobacter infection in Scotland is raw poultry meat, with up to 80% of infections being linked to exposure to chicken.
The Campylobacter Risk Management Programme (CRMP) aims to reduce the percentage of chickens produced in UK poultry slaughterhouses with the highest levels ofcontamination from 27% (2008 baseline) to 10% by 2015.
FSA estimates that this could lead to a reduction in Campylobacter foodborne infection of up to 30%, equivalent to about 111,000 food poisoning cases per year.
Of the 348 outbreaks in 2012 for which HPS has a completed outbreak report form, the mode of transmission was foodborne in four outbreaks and multiple modes of transmission in one outbreak.
Salmonella Newport came from watermelon and Salmonella Braenderup was traced to a restaurant.
The infection of Cryptosporidium was in prewashed bagged mixed salad leaves and Scrombrotoxin came from tuna mayonnaise sandwiches in a hotel, according to the report.
E.coli cases down
From 2008 to 2012, the average annual total was 235 O157 and 30 non-O157 verotoxigenic E. coli (VTEC).
Foodborne transmission can occur when the surface of raw meat becomes contaminated during slaughter and processing
Unpasteurised or inadequately pasteurised milk, or raw vegetables and minced beef products pose a particular risk if not cooked properly.
The Scottish Government has set up a VTEC/E. coli O157 Action Group (co-ordinated by HPS), to produce a VTEC/E. coli O157 Action Plan for the country which will be published later in 2013, and will give attention to foodborne routes of transmission.
In 2012, there were 11 laboratory confirmed cases of L. monocytogenes, a slight decrease on the 14 cases in 2011.
Six (54.5%) of the 11 cases reported in 2012 were aged 65 years and over which is similar to 2011 when 50% of cases were 65 years and over.
All 11 cases reported in 2012 were admitted to hospital, and one death was reported.
The FSA’s Listeria Risk Management Programme (LRMP) identifying effective measures for controlling L. monocytogenes in the production of chilled ready to eat foods and develop tools to assist food businesses to minimise the risk of contamination.
In 2012 there were 728 reports of Salmonella, a 30% reduction since 2008 and a 78% reduction since the peak in 1997.
Salmonella Enteritidis and Salmonella Typhimurium are the most commonly reported serotypes, and the only two serotypes with more than 100 reports in 2012.
Salmonella has declined since 1997 because of the virtual eradication of S. Enteritidis PT4 due to the identification in the late 1980s of fresh shell eggs as the most likely vehicle of infection, and the introduction in the late 1990s of vaccination of laying flocks against this serotype.