Tiger Brands’ share price was down about 7% on Monday morning after the company was hit by revelations that its Enterprise Foods plant in Polokwane was the source of the current listeriosis outbreak.
The company, which has a market cap of over R81.6-billion, is one of the largest food manufacturers in the country. The 7% fall equates to a R5.6-billion drop in its value.
On Sunday health minister Aaron Motsoaledi announced that the ST6 strain of the listeriosis monocytongenes bacteria, which is the cause of the outbreak that has killed 180 people, had been found at the plant.
The company has closed the both its Polokwane facility, as well as its Germiston plant as a precautionary step, it said on Sunday.
The presence of the ST6 strain however, has yet to be confirmed at its Germiston factory.
A nationwide recall of its products was initiated on Sunday, along with some products of Rainbow Chickens Limited (RCL), after the listeria monocytogenes bacteria was found at Rainbows Wolwehoek plant in Sasolburg.
The ST6 strain has not been confirmed at RCL’s plant either however. Its share price was down by about 4%.
Enterprise is expected to hold a press conference later today, after having met the National Consumer Commission, to discuss the details of the recall.
Meanwhile retailers including Pick ‘n Pay, Shoprite and Checkers have begun clearing their shelves of the affected Enterprise and Rainbow products.