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Bacteria in reblochon cheese sends 6 children to hospital

rfi English, May 14

Authorities ordered a recall of reblochon cheeses on Monday after six young children were hospitalised with E.coli infections traced to a producer.

One of the children, who range from 18 months to three years old, was still in hospital after eating the raw-milk cheeses made by Chabert at its site in Cruseilles, eastern France.

The agriculture and health ministries said in a joint statement that reblochon cheeses made at the site, sold under a variety of brands, were being recalled "as a precautionary measure".

The recall was first announced on Friday but only involved Chabert cheeses sold by the Leclerc supermarket chain under an in-house brand.

The hospitalised children had begun having kidney complications, while a seventh child was also infected but did not require additional treatment.

"Investigations are continuing at the company and with its milk suppliers to determine the exact source of the E.coli 026 contamination," the ministries said, referring to the specific strain of the potentially fatal bacteria.

Authorities also urged parents not to let young children eat raw-milk cheese, just a few weeks after a recall of camembert cheeses following inspections at a producer which revealed E.coli contamination, though no illnesses were reported.

The reblochon recall comes as US authorities battle the biggest E.coli outbreak since 2006, warning people not to eat romaine lettuce unless they are certain of its origin after dozens of people got sick, including one person who died.

 

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