Salmonella-contaminated salami recalled from Aldi in Denmark for second time this year

The Local reports a brand of mini-salami sold at Aldi Nord has been recalled by the company Hans Kupfer & Sohn GmbH & Co after finding traces of Salmonella present. This follows a previous recall in September of the same product.

The Salami Piccolini, sold exclusively at Aldi North, was recalled by the manufacturer on Monday after consultation with the authorities.

The Bavarian company Hans Kupfer & Sohn GmbH & Co. KG have recalled batch number HKS170671 of the 100g packs of Mediterranean-type salami, with the use-by date 9.11.17, and have strongly advised against customers consuming the product if they have already bought it. 

The sausage was sold in branches of the Aldi Nord chain in Berlin and Hamburg, as well as in the federal states of Brandenburg, Hesse, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Lower Saxony, Nord Rhine Westphalia and Schleswig-Holstein.

This is not the first time there have been problems with the product as, at the end of September, another batch of the mini-salami, with the serial number HKS169171 and the use-by date 22.10.2017, was recalled for the same reason.


Salami, fermented sausage and risk in Italy

Sorenne loves her salami  — or smallgoods as they are sometimes called in Australia.

soppresseNow its gone all artsy or artisanal but there’s still a microbiological risk.

As of the start of the 21st century, consumers have developed a growing interest in so called “traditional or artisanal” food. The renewed interest in this type of food is explained by consumers’ perception of these products. In fact, traditional food has a general positive image across Europe, and European consumers trade off the relative expense and time required for preparation of traditional food for its specific taste, quality, appearance, nutritional value, healthiness and safety (Almli et al., 2011 and Guerrero et al., 2009). Such food is often produced by small farms, and so the rural economy benefits from the increase in activity and profits through direct sales at local food markets (Berlin et al., 2009 and Carey et al., 2011).

Although the term “traditional foods” is widely used, the concept of traditional food products embraces different dimensions and there are hardly any definitions that clearly define traditional foods. In order to identify “traditional” foods, the EU legislation (EC, 2006a, EC, 2006b and EC, 2012) has defined criteria based on product designations that are linked to geographical origin or traditional production methods. In addition, the EuroFIR FP6 Network of Excellence provided a definition of traditional foods which includes statements about traditional ingredients, traditional composition and traditional type of production and/or processing method (Weichselbaum et al., 2009).

Among European countries, Italy is the lead producer of traditional foods and products such as foods with Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) or Protected Geographical Indication (PGI), followed by France, Spain, Portugal and Greece (ISMEA, 2013). Additionally, it is estimated that Italy has around 5000 traditional local food products without any certification (CIA, 2015), which could represent an important resource contributing to the development and sustainability of rural areas, providing ample variety in food choice for the consumer and a remarkable income for the economy. With its 371 typical products, Veneto Region is the fourth Italian Region according to number of traditional food products after Toscana, Campania and Lazio (Mipaaf, 2014). In addition, since 2007, Veneto Region has implemented regional legislation which defines a simplified procedure to sell small quantities of traditional food products at local level directly from the producer to the consumer (DGR, 2007 and DGR, 2008). In Veneto Region, many typical fermented sausages such as salami and soppresse are produced with traditional technologies, and so the legislation has been focused firstly on these products and subsequently on other types of meat products (poultry and rabbit meat) and products of non-animal origin (canned food; fruit juices; flour and dried vegetables; bread and bakery products; extra virgin olive oil).

In relation to fermented sausages, the legislation defines the production season, the maximum number of animals that can be reared and the minimum rearing period for pigs on the production farm as well as the minimum hygienic pre-requisites of the work areas used for processing pork meat into fermented sausages. Since these sausages are mainly produced following traditional practice in small processing units, starter cultures are not added to the minced pork meat and ripening is carried out in rooms with less temperature and relative humidity control than that used by industrial manufacturers. Therefore, deviations in temperature and/or humidity can result in insufficient fermentation-drying processes, meaning the absence of pathogens in the final products is not assured. The presence of food-borne pathogens such as Listeria monocytogenes, Escherichia coli O157, and Salmonella spp. in fermented sausages has been reported.

salamiConcerning L. monocytogenes, the pathogen was detected at the end of ripening in 40% of “Salsiccia Sarda” (a traditional Italian fermented sausage) with contamination levels always lower than 100 cfu/g ( Meloni et al., 2012), while a prevalence of 15% was reported in fermented sausages produced in northern Italy (De Cesare et al., 2007). Other studies conducted on traditional fermented sausages at the end of the ripening period showed a L. monocytogenes prevalence of 10% in France ( Thevenot et al., 2005), 16% in Spain (Martin et al., 2011), 42% in Greece (Gounadaki et al., 2008) and 60% in Portugal (Ferreira et al., 2007). The prevalence of Salmonella spp. in traditional fermented sausages is lower than Listeria: the presence of Salmonella was reported in two out of 38 batches of traditional Portuguese sausages (alheiras) ( Ferreira et al., 2007) and in three out of 21 (14%) batter samples of traditional Greek fermented sausages but not in the final products (ready to be sold) (Gounadaki et al., 2008). In relation to verocytotoxin-producing E. coli (VTEC), including E. coli serotype O157:H7, for which meat and meat products are considered the main source of infection for humans, an overall VTEC prevalence of 16% was found in fresh pork sausages collected in the southern part of Italy ( Villani et al., 2005).

In addition, food-borne outbreaks associated with the consumption of fermented meats are reported in the literature. In Veneto Region of Italy, in January 2004, a family outbreak of E. coli O157 infection caused by a dry-fermented traditional salami made with pork meat and produced in a local plant occurred ( Conedera et al., 2007). In Norway, an outbreak caused by E. coli O103:H25 involving 17 patients was attributed to the consumption of fermented sausages ( Sekse et al., 2009). Concerning Salmonella, an outbreak of Salmonella Typhimurium DT104A involving 63 cases associated with the consumption of traditional pork salami was reported in Lazio Region of Italy ( Luzzi et al., 2007). Another outbreak of Salmonella Typhimurium associated with the consumption of unripened salami was reported in Lombardia Region of Italy ( Pontello et al., 1998). L. monocytogenes outbreaks associated with the consumption of fermented sausages have not been reported, to our knowledge, even though L. monocytogenes has been implicated in several listeriosis outbreaks linked to the consumption of pre-sliced ready-to-eat deli meats ( Thevenot et al., 2006). The infective doses of the above-mentioned micro-organisms can vary widely according to several factors such as the strain, the susceptibility of the host, and the food matrix involved. In case of L. monocytogenes in susceptible individuals, it is unlikely that fewer than 1000 cells may cause disease ( EFSA, 2007). Concerning Salmonella the infective dose is variable but often low numbers of cells (between 10 and 1000) are sufficient to cause disease, the same for EHEC which is known for its low infective dose ( Strachan et al., 2005 and Teunis et al., 2010). The difference in dose-response relationship between the three pathogens may also, to some extent, explain the difference in stringency in surveillance. In European Regulation 2073/2005 (EC, 2005), tolerance of up to 100 cfu/g of L. monocytogenes in ready-to-eat meat products is accepted at the end of shelf life, whereas usually action limits of absence of Salmonella and EHEC per 25 g are applicable.

In order to avoid the marketing of potentially hazardous traditional fermented pork sausages (Italian salami and soppresse) produced within the Veneto region, this study was initiated by the regional competent authorities in collaboration with the small-scale producers with the following aims: a) investigate the production process of traditional salami and soppresse in Veneto Region of Italy; b) identify the microbiological hazards associated with this type of food, and finally; c) identify control measures easily applicable directly by the Food Business Operator (FBO) with the supervision and control of the regional Competent Authority (CA) in order to manage the hazards associated with this type of traditional meat product.

Artisanal Italian salami and soppresse: Identification of control strategies to manage microbiological hazards

Journal of Food Microbiology

Volume 61, February 2017, p. 5-13

Roccato, Anna. Et al.

Oscar fever? How about salami made from celebrity tissue

Bite Labs wants to grow meats from celebrity tissue to make into artisanal salami.

James Franco tastes “arrogant, distinctive, and completely undeniable. Jennifer Lawrence will have a “a charming and confident flavor profile.” And Kanye West salami is best paired celebrity.salamiwith “strong straight bourbon,” according to Bite Labs.

“Kevin” from Bite Labs wrote, “Our team is deeply interested in food culture, celebrity and media as well as thinking about the future,” in an e-mailed response to Vice’s Motherboard.

Kevin told Vice the current campaign is to develop a prototype of celebrity meat. Bite Labs is asking people to tweet at their favorite celebrities to be a salami.

U.S. halts imports of Canadian cured meat products

In the midst of the ongoing mess from the E. coli O157-linked XL plant in Edmonton, American meat inspectors this week began turning away loads of Canadian dry cured meat products from the borders, Global News has learned.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency says it has been working with the U.S. for a number of months to resolve what is being called a “technical issue.”

“Their standards on those particular products and ours don’t fully align,” said CFIA spokesperson Dr. Richard Arsenault. “I can’t comment on as to why they took this specific decision, but we’re going to work through that.”

Jim Laws, ex-director of the Canadian Meat Council, told Global News that its members were aware of negotiations taking place but never received notice of an impending halt of exports.

“They want more proof that in fact the whole drying process, which is a pretty standard process does in fact, would kill off any harmful bacteria, if any were present,” said Laws. “These products like salami and prosciutto are traditionally very safe because they’re manufactured over 45 days, 90 days, prosciutto up to 6 months.”

Canada exports nearly $20 million worth of dry cured meat to the U.S. and producers say any delay in getting Canadian processors back on the market could be devastating.

Many dry meat producers fear this won’t help bolster the opinion of Canadian meat products, given the timing of the Alberta based XL Foods beef recall due to e-coli concerns. 

Know thy suppliers: judge grants $33M default against spice co in salami recall

A federal judge has granted a $33 million default judgment against a New York-based spice company involved in a massive salami recall in 2010 after it failed to respond to a lawsuit brought by a Rhode Island-based meat company.

U.S. District Court Judge William Smith on Monday granted a request for a default judgment by Daniele International against Brooklyn-based Wholesome Spice and Seasonings, Inc.

Daniele recalled more than 1.2 million pounds of meat in 2010 after a salmonella outbreak in 44 states sickened more than 250 people.

Health officials found salmonella in the pepper Daniele bought from Wholesome Spices and another company.

Daniele lawyer Richard Beretta, Jr. says it’s unclear whether they’ll collect on the judgment.

The New York State Division of Corporations says the company was dissolved in April.

Unlabeled, unpackaged Australian salami sold at markets recalled over high staph levels

Queensland Health is warning against consuming a batch of salami made by smallgoods company Backa Australia, after samples were found with high levels of bacteria.

The company based in Beenleigh, in Queensland, has begun a voluntary recall of its chabi salami products sold at farmers markets in Brisbane and the Gold Coast last weekend (14-15 January 2012).

The salami product tested positive to staphylococcus bacteria which can cause a type of food poisoning.

Consumers who purchased the chabi products from farmers markets at Rocklea, Ascot, Chandler, Nerang, Palm Beach, and the Southport Sharks Club last weekend are advised not to consume them.

A statement released by Queensland Health said, “While there is no reason to suspect other products of Backa Australia are also contaminated, all retail sales have been suspended until further tests can be carried out.”

The Backa Australia chabi is unpackaged and not labelled.

Final salmonella-in-pepper-on-salami report; loyalty cards helped with traceback

From July 2009 until April 2010, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control identified 272 cases of Salmonella Montevideo in people from 44 states and the District of Columbia.

The outbreak strain was identified in salami products, one company A facility environmental sample, and sealed containers of black and red pepper used to produce company A salami products.

This outbreak highlights the importance of preventing post-processing contamination of ready-to-eat products from raw ingredients such as spices.

This nationwide outbreak of Salmonella Montevideo infections was associated with salami products containing contaminated imported black and red pepper. This outbreak highlights the importance of preventing product contamination between its production and its use and the potential for spices, such as pepper, to contaminate ready-to-eat products.

Eight spice-associated Salmonella outbreaks occurred during 1973–2009, accounting for 1,656 human illnesses. In September 2008, an outbreak of Salmonella Rissen infections was associated with ground white pepper. An increasing number of dried spice recalls have occurred over the past several years, with only two during the 1990s and 16 during 2000—2004.

Membership cards helped provide important brand-specific information in this investigation. During hypothesis generation, it was learned that many patients reported shopping at different locations of a national warehouse chain. This prompted WADOH to collect data on items purchased by patients based on membership card records. Information gathered from these cards, with patient permission, helped determine the brand name and purchase dates of implicated products. Based on this information, USDA-FSIS traced back lots of ingredients, which helped FDA identify lots of black and red pepper used to produce the contaminated salami products. As this investigation demonstrates, membership and shopper cards can provide critical information to quickly identify potentially contaminated foods and should be considered for use in future foodborne disease outbreak investigations.

The complete report is available at:

Daniele salami was supposed to be recalled but Evan found some at retail in Minnesota

Evan Henke, a MS student at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health writes the recent expanded recall of over 1.25 million pounds of salami products produced by Rhode Island-based Daniele Inc. was long overdue.

Five days after Daniele’s initial recall of all black-pepper coated salami products on January 23/10, tests by the Rhode Island Department of Health found the outbreak strain of Salmonella Montevideo in an open container of black pepper used to coat salami products. On Jan. 29/10, I found a 3oz. package of the shredded product on store shelves in Minneapolis. Daniele had not listed this product on their initial recall list. For some reason, Daniele Inc. had decided that this product was still safe to sell to adults and children even after every other black-pepper coated product was recalled and a test of the company’s black pepper returned positive for Salmonella.

As a student of food safety, I purchased the product on Jan. 29th and called Daniele headquarters on Feb 2nd to ask why the product was still on the shelves. A spokeswoman assured me the product was not part of the recall, was not a concern of the company, and was safe to eat, all the while completely understanding my confusion.

Like any good citizen, I proceeded to hand the products over to the Minnesota Department of Agriculture the next day for microbial testing. I was told by an enthusiastic employee that the information on the product would be sent to the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) for further investigation.

Two days after contacting Daniele Inc. directly and less than 24 hours after handing the product over to the Minnesota Department of Agriculture and FSIS, Daniele Inc. announced that all 3oz. packages of the product were to be added to the recall on Feb. 4th, 12 days after their they decided the product was safe enough to continue to sell and 7 days after a container of black pepper in the factory where the product was produced tested positive for the outbreak strain of Salmonella.

I would like to give the benefit of the doubt to food producers who initiate voluntary recalls after their products have been associated with outbreaks of food borne disease. Unfortunately, neither Daniele Inc. nor FSIS was interested in a thorough investigation of the completeness of the recall. Daniele Inc. either willingly chose to leave 3oz packages of a product reasonably suspected to be contaminated in commerce or was utterly incapable of completely reviewing their production systems and identifying all products that may cause harm to their consumers I hope it is only anecdotal that these small 3oz. packages not only contained very little salami (and thus a minute amount of black pepper that could have caused disease), but also has an extremely high profit margin.

Maybe this lackluster corporate response is an exception to standard practice. Under existing food safety infrastructure, a complete and honest industry recall to protect public health is the only way of determining exactly which products a careless food producer distributes and those that are not reasonably safe to eat.

Henke (left, exactly as shown) is an avid fan of foodborne disease epidemiology and food safety, and spends most of his free time angering his friends with his interest in food production and careful scrutiny of food safety practices.

U.S. CDC Investigating a multi-state Salmonella Montevideo outbreak; over 180 ill

A new food safety infosheet focusing on the investigation into a Salmonella Montevideo outbreak is out.

U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is collaborating with public health officials, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to investigate an outbreak of Salmonella Montevideo.  Although CDC has not provided a list of potential sources, Daniele, Inc. has announced they are recalling 1.2 million pounds of products, including pepper-coated salami, as a result of the outbreak. Preliminary results from health authorities indicate that eleven ill individuals had consumed salami products from  “Daniele Italian Brand Gourmet Pack.”

Food safety infosheet highlights:
-Daniele brand pepper-coated Salami recalled after potential link to outbreak.
-184 Illnesses have been reported in 38 states since July 1, 2009. Reports suggest that pepper used in the product might be the source of the illnesses.
-Pepper and other dry spices have been linked to salmonella contamination in the past.
– A list of recalled products and labels are is attached.

Click here to download the food safety infosheet.