New Brunswick E. coli O157 outbreak linked to Jungle Jim’s restaurant

CBC reports that up to 24 cases of E. coli O157 in Miramichi, New Brunswick (that’s in eastern Canada) have been linked to Jungle Jim’s restaurant.

Dr. Eilish Cleary, the province’s chief medical officer of health, said in a statement a majority of the confirmed cases ate at a Jungle Jim’s restaurant in Miramichi in the days prior to getting sick.
“Food samples taken from Jungle Jim’s tested negative for E. Coli 157: H7,” Cleary said (O157?- ben). “However, as most of the confirmed cases ate at this restaurant, it is likely that the contaminated food source was present in the restaurant for a short period of time but that contaminated products had been used up when testing took place.”

She said Jungle Jim’s fully co-operated with provincial inspectors, including a thorough sanitation of its kitchen and the completion of a food safety course.

With no new cases of E. coil being reported, she said it suggests the source of the contamination remained in the food supply chain for only a short period of time.

A case-control stud with help from the Public Health Agency of Canada is planned.  No pathogen in the food samples isn’t all that surprising; not finding the smoking gun is often the norm.

On Jungle Jim’s Facebook page, Brian Geneau, of Jungle Jim’s posts:

As you all can see the information on the news today the NB board of public Health has issued a statement concerning (sic) the e-coli and the possible implications of our location.
Please make sure to remember their is 2 sides to all stories and that all indications are that we operate at the highest possible standard that is set by the public health and that "If" their was contamination is would of been a product that was contaminated prior of arriving to our location. all our inspections before during and after all this came back green and is posted on line and also all product tested with the results comming (sic) back negative.

we will keep you posted as Genevieve and myself have the highest regards for our customers and their safety and have been in full cooperation (sic) with the BOHealth in order to find and prevent this from happening again (sic).

Please remeber that the I have over 20 years experience in this industry and that we continue to operate at the highest level and with the staff we have they excecute with the same attitude.

Kindest regards and hope to see yea all soon,

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About Ben Chapman

Dr. Ben Chapman is a professor and food safety extension specialist at North Carolina State University. As a teenager, a Saturday afternoon viewing of the classic cable movie, Outbreak, sparked his interest in pathogens and public health. With the goal of less foodborne illness, his group designs, implements, and evaluates food safety strategies, messages, and media from farm-to-fork. Through reality-based research, Chapman investigates behaviors and creates interventions aimed at amateur and professional food handlers, managers, and organizational decision-makers; the gate keepers of safe food. Ben co-hosts a biweekly podcast called Food Safety Talk and tries to further engage folks online through Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and, maybe not surprisingly, Pinterest. Follow on Twitter @benjaminchapman.