Traces of listeria see another Tiger Brands factory shut down

The company said that the bacteria detected was within government standards, however, it had decided to take precautionary steps by closing the plant and recalling products. (Siphiwe Sibeko/Reuters)

The company said that the bacteria detected was within government standards, however, it had decided to take precautionary steps by closing the plant and recalling products. (Siphiwe Sibeko/Reuters)

Tiger Brands has suspended production at its Pretoria plant following detection of “very low levels” of Listeria monocytogenes.

The company said that the bacteria detected was within government standards, however, it had decided to take precautionary steps by closing the plant and recalling all ready-to-eat Snax products.

It said in a press statement that given the closure of the Polokwane, Germiston and Pretoria sites, Tiger Brands would also begin to wind down operations at its Clayville abattoir, in Gauteng, with the hope of suspending operations by the end of March.

READ MORE: Listeriosis- Mind the regulatory gap

The abattoir had been the primary meat supplier for the three factories.

“During this period of investigation and discovery we have decided to be extra cautious and to take immediate precautionary action when traces of Listeria are detected where they are not expected,” chief executive of Tiger Brands Lawrence MacDougall said in the statement. “We are investing all our time and energy into not only understanding the cause of the ST6 detection, but also how it could have come into our facility.”

The company brought in an independent group that confirmed the presence of the ST6 strain of  Listeria in its Polokwane factory on March 15.

To date, the Germiston and Polokwane operations remain closed and all Enterprise ready-to-eat meat products are no longer available for sale. 

READ MORE: Supermarkets rush to pull foods implicated in Listeriosis outbreak

This article has been amended to reflect updates.
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Gemma Ritchie

Gemma Ritchie

Gemma Ritchie works in the Mail & Guardian's online department. She majored in English Literature at a small liberal arts college in the USA.  Read more from Gemma Ritchie

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