Imported eggs: One box in 30 infected with Salmonella

16-11-2006 | |

The UK Food Standards Agency has published the results of survey into imported eggs retailed in England, which showed that Salmonella was present in around one box in every 30 (3.3 percent).

Salmonella enteritidis was the most common type of Salmonella found in the UK FSA study.
Eggs from eight European countries were collected for the tests, with almost two-thirds of the eggs collected originating in Spain. Spain also had the highest number of contaminated eggs – with an estimated one in every eight boxes. Most of the contaminated eggs came from just three farms.
The findings help provide an indication of where contamination is occurring, and how best to target interventions to reduce Salmonella problems in the UK. Only around 10% of eggs in the UK are imported and most of these are used in the catering trade.
The Agency’s findings are supported by a survey published earlier this year by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) of Salmonella in layer flocks across Europe.
Dr Andrew Wadge, Director of Food Safety at the FSA said: “The vast majority of eggs we eat in the UK are Salmonella-free. However, this survey shows that problems with Salmonella in eggs have not gone away. The European Commission (EC) has taken a lead in setting targets for reducing Salmonella in laying flocks and moving to requiring compulsory vaccination in countries with a high prevalence of contaminated flocks.
“In the UK vaccinating flocks against Salmonella has been successful.”