Thu, October 2, 2008

Macedonia: Pastries Sicken Hundreds


Source of Article:



SKOPJE, Macedonia -- Macedonian health officials say more than 250 people came down with suspected food poisoning after eating cream-filled pastries to celebrate the end of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan.

Most of the 257 people who have sought medical help over the last five days are Muslims celebrating the holiday of Eid al-Fitr, which marks the end of Ramadan.

All are believed to have eaten pastries from one shop in Skopje's Old Bazaar district, the capital's old Ottoman quarter.

Officials say most people have been treated and released.

But 57 patients are still in hospital with severe symptoms of food poisoning.

Health officials are waiting for the final results of laboratory tests to determine exactly what sickened the patients.

"Many of the patients were displaying serious symptoms of salmonella poisoning, including vomiting, diarrhea and high fever," said Dr. Blagica Joksimovic, an epidemiologist in a Skopje clinic.

Health authorities and sanitary inspection officials began testing pastry shops across the country on Wednesday, and have warned of severe penalties for any producers failing to maintain hygiene standards.





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