The unprecedented interest in Listeria in the 1980s led to an increase in awareness of both the presence and the properties of Listeria amongst all those who produce, distribute and consume foods in the UK, and the purpose of this paper is to outline some of our experience in the Public Health Laboratory Service with this subject. Data are presented showing both a reduction in the numbers of cases of human listeriosis after an upsurge during 1987-89 (which may have been associated with the consumption of pâté), and a general reduction in the contamination of soft cheese and pâté by L. monocytogenes. In addition, responses to the contamination of foods by L. monocytogenes are discussed.
- Food safety
- Listeria monocytogenes