New EFSA and ECDC data

Europe: Foodborne outbreak illnesses and deaths increasing

According to data from the annual report on zoonotic diseases, the number of foodborne disease outbreaks and deaths in Europe has increased in 2019.

Data released by the European Food Safety Agency (EFSA) and the European Center for Disease Control and Prevention (ECDC) says Salmonella is the source of most outbreaks, followed by norovirus.

During 2019, 27 member states reported 5,175 foodborne outbreaks involving 49,463 illnesses, 3,859 hospitalizations and 60 deaths. Some 117 outbreaks, 3,760 illnesses and 158 hospitalizations were recorded by Iceland, Montenegro, Norway, Republic of North Macedonia, Serbia and Switzerland.

Totals are up from 2018, excluding delayed data from the Netherlands, when there were 5,098 foodborne outbreaks with 48,365 illnesses, and 40 deaths. In 2019, a germ was identified in 60 percent of foodborne outbreaks with almost 36,000 cases, 3,300 hospitalizations and 54 deaths.

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