Be careful with Belgian chocolate in China and elsewhere: UN warns of salmonellosis

According to Chinese media, outbreaks of salmonellosis associated with chocolate products made in Belgium have recently occurred in many countries in Europe and America, it is also likely that this chocolate from Belgium could be shipped to other regions of the world, and probably to China.


The UK previously notified the World Health Organization (WHO) of a cluster of cases of monophasic Salmonella typhimurium sequence 34 infection. The investigation found that the outbreak was linked to Belgian-made chocolate, which could be sold to at least 113 countries and regions, including China.


On April 10, the International Food Safety Authorities Network (INFOSAN) issued a global alert, initiating a global product recall.


A total of 151 genetically linked cases were reported in 11 countries, believed to be related to the consumption of related chocolate products. Bloody diarrhea was present in many cases, but as of April 25, no outbreak-related deaths have been reported.


Salmonellosis is a disease caused by the non-typhoid bacteria Salmonella. Although about 2500 serotypes have been identified, most human infections are caused by two Salmonella serotypes: Typhimurium and Enteritidis.


Prevention of salmonellosis requires control measures at all stages of the food chain, from agricultural production to food processing, production and preparation in commercial establishments and households, the WHO said.