Second company finds bacteria in salmon shipment to Israel
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Second company finds bacteria in salmon shipment to Israel

In fifth food scare in a month, Neto Group says contaminated fish didn’t come near consumers

Asian-inspired citrus salmon (Liz Rueven/JTA)
Asian-inspired citrus salmon (Liz Rueven/JTA)

Israel’s food contamination woes continued Wednesday as a second batch of salmon within two days was found to be tainted with the listeria bacteria, though it never reached consumers.

A shipment of smoked salmon from abroad that was bound for a packaging factory was found to contain the harmful bacteria, Channel 2 reported.

The contaminated salmon belonged to the Neto Group, a large Israeli food conglomerate.

No fish from the tainted shipment made it to the factory, the company said, adding all shipments are tested at the port before being released to the next destination.

On Tuesday, the Maadaney Miki company told the public not to use their frozen salmon processed in July and August.

Maadaney Miki alerted customers not to use salmon marked as made on 03/07/2016 with an expiration on 27/02/2017 or several sets of dates (05/07/2016, 01/03/2017; 07/07/2016, 03/03/2017; 14/07/2016, 10/03/2017; 02/08/2016, 29/03/2017; 04/08/2016, 31/03/2017) and to contact the company at 1-700-50-55-40.

Food safety recalls are not uncommon in Israel, but have become all too frequent over the past month.

In early August, the Health Ministry announced that it had suspended a manufacturing license given to multinational corporation Unilever, after cornflakes tainted with salmonella managed to reach Israeli consumers.

Unilever had declined to recall the cornflakes, initially claiming that the products had not gone out to consumers, and only later admitting that they had hit the shelves.

Israeli shoppers buy food from the frozen section of Rami Levi supermarket in Talpiot, Jerusalem. (Nati Shohat/Flash 90)
Shoppers buy food from the frozen section of Rami Levi supermarket in Talpiot, Jerusalem. (Nati Shohat/Flash 90)

Less than a week later, Salatey Shamir (Shamir Salads), said some of its tahini (sesame paste) products also contaminated with salmonella had reached the stores and most likely been eaten by Israeli consumers.

CEO Ami Guy told the Ynet news site that the suppliers, Prince Tahina, had notified Salatey Shamir too late to prevent a wide range of products containing the tahini from going out to the stores.

Some 200 tons of Prince Tahina’s paste were marked for destruction and the dates of suspect products were publicized by Israeli media.

Only one day after the tahini story broke, Milotal Frozen Vegetables called for the return of all its frozen french fries, after lab tests found listeria contamination in the product.

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