Status:
Active
Health advisory:
190005
Date Issued:
21 Mar 2019
Issued by:
Dr Brett Sutton, Chief Health Officer, Victoria
Issued to:
Health professionals and consumers

Key messages

  • A national recall of eggs produced by Bridgewater Poultry is underway following the detection of a particular strain of Salmonella bacteria (Salmonella Enteritidis) on the farm.
  • Food products contaminated with Salmonella may cause illness if consumed.
  • As of 21 March there are five Victorian residents identified with Salmonella associated with this recall.
  • Symptoms include diarrhoea, fever, headache, stomach cramps, nausea and vomiting.
  • Symptoms of Salmonella infection usually occur between six and 72 hours after eating contaminated food and commonly last for four to seven days. 
  • These eggs have been sold under different brands through Coles, Woolworths and a variety of independent stores nationally.
  • Consumers should check if eggs they have purchased are affected by this recall by comparing the product with details of the recalled eggs at Food Standards Recalls.
  • Consumers who have purchased these eggs should return them to the place of purchase for a full refund or dispose of them in the rubbish bin. DO NOT dispose of these eggs in a compost bin.
  • Consumers are also advised they MUST NOT feed these eggs to any domestic animals or livestock.
 

What is the issue

Salmonella Enteritidis has been detected on Bridgewater Poultry Farm. A national recall of eggs produced by this company is underway. Consumption of eggs contaminated with Salmonella may cause illness, so consumers are advised to dispose of or return eggs as listed in the recall notice.

Anyone experiencing symptoms of Salmonella infection, also known as salmonellosis, should see their doctor.

Who is at risk?

Salmonellosis can affect anyone, however most cases occur in children and young adults. The severity of symptoms depends on the number of bacteria ingested, the age of the individual and their general health. The elderly and anyone with a weakened immune system may be more severely affected. 

Symptoms and transmission

Symptoms of salmonellosis usually occur between six and 72 hours after eating food contaminated with Salmonella bacteria and commonly last for four to seven days. Symptoms include diarrhoea, fever, headache, stomach cramps, nausea and vomiting. Infants, the elderly and the immunosuppressed are particularly at risk of dehydration and can require admission to hospital for treatment.

Salmonella bacteria can be passed from person to person so good hand hygiene is important, especially after going to the toilet and before preparing and handling food, and cases should stay home from work, school or child care until 24 hours after all symptoms have stopped. Food handlers, healthcare workers and childcare workers in particular must stay away from work until 48 hours after the last symptom has ended, because of the higher risk of spread of the infection to large groups or vulnerable populations.

Recommendations

  • Provide appropriate clinical management, particularly if there is fever, blood in stool or clinical evidence of dehydration. 
  • Test patients with a compatible illness, especially if they report consumption of eggs affected by this recall. Send a faecal specimen that includes culture, as PCR testing will not differentiate Salmonella Enteritidis infection from other types of Salmonella infection.
  • Advise exclusion from work, school or childcare until 24 hours free of symptoms. If your patient is a food handler, healthcare worker or childcare worker, advise your patient to stay away from work until 48 hours after the last symptom has ended.
  • Advise patients with the product to return the product to the place of purchase or dispose of the product in the rubbish bin. 
  • Notify the department at health.vic.gov.au/notify of any confirmed cases of Salmonella Enteritidis infection.

Clinical information

Salmonellosis

Consumer information

Better Health Channel - Gastroenteritis - salmonellosis

Contacts

For more details regarding the recall please visit Food Standards Recalls. Health professionals can contact the Communicable Disease Prevention and Control team at the Department of Health and Human Services on 1300 651 160 (24 hours) for information.