Did sandwich poison patient?
It is believed a patient contracted listeria by eating a sandwich from a contaminated batch recalled from hospitals, schools and businesses across the South East
A PATIENT was struck down with listeria thought to originate from a contaminated sandwich produced in an Ashford factory.
The Health Protection Agency (HPA) confirmed that a patient had contracted the same strain of listeria found in sandwiches made by Anchor Catering in Kingsnorth.
The patient, from an unnamed hospital, recovered from listeria but died of an existing illness.
HPA spokesman Kathryn Swan said: “We can confirm that an individual with a weakened immune system, who reported eating a sandwich – likely to be Anchor – in a hospital supplied by Anchor has tested positive for the same strain of Listeria as the one found at Anchor Catering.
“The strain is relatively uncommon and it is very likely that the two are linked.”
A spokesman for Anchor Catering said they were unable to comment as they had not been formally notified of the incident.
The Food Standards Agency raised the alarm on March 16 when listeria was picked up in routine testing but it was feared “large numbers” of sandwiches had already been eaten.
This is the first case of food poisoning to be reported but the FSA has warned symptoms can take up to 90 days to appear.
As many as 220,000 ready-made sandwiches with sell-by dates from February 21 and March 14 were under suspicion.
Anchor Catering voluntarily ceased production for investigations and deep cleaning.
Anchor, which also trades under the Pomegranate label, sells products across Kent.