Tiger Brands independently confirms deadly listeriosis bacteria in its products

CAPE TOWN — After staying mostly silent for the longest time as its angry detractors and victims beat the bushes around it, Tiger Brands has finally confirmed what outside agencies already knew; the 199-victim listeriosis came from its products. It’s a step in the right direction for the families of the victims of whom 110 and counting have so far registered their names in a class action brought on their behalf for as yet unquantified millions. That eventual bill, should the class action lawyers be able to prove a causal link, will be added to the R377 million the world’s worst listeriosis outbreak has so far cost Tiger Brands in cold meat recalls production shutdowns and abattoir closures. Production-line remedial action continues apace as corporate executives surely debate the cost-effectiveness of making a hefty-out-of-court settlement in a bid to mitigate otherwise potentially fatal financial damage. – Chris Bateman

By Liezel Hill

(Bloomberg) — Tiger Brands Ltd. said it’s confirmed that the bacteria strain responsible for the world’s worst listeriosis outbreak was found in its products.

Results from independent laboratory retesting found the listeria ST6 strain, the company said in a statement Wednesday. The strain has been identified by South African authorities as responsible for the outbreak that’s killed 199 people since the start of 2017.

“We have been actively engaging with the Department of Health and the National Institute of Communicable Diseases on our findings and will continue to collaborate with them on the actions taken to date to actively address our findings,” the company said.

Tiger Brands’ Enterprise brand facilities in Polokwane, Pretoria and Germiston remain closed while remedial work continues.