Australia: Investigation into food poisoning claim


2/11/2008 6:08:00 PM


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THE NSW Food Authority is investigating claims more than a dozen visitors to Orange were struck down with food poisoning so severe one member required hospitalisation.

What promised to be an enjoyable weekend where the MR2 Owners’ Club of Australia sampled the city’s food and wine culture quickly turned into a nightmare after 14 members experienced “painful and debilitating” symptoms such as fever, chills, muscular aches, vomiting and gastroenteritis early last week.

So severe was the suspected case of food poisoning one person was hospitalised and a further four needed medical treatment.

Eight other members of the car club were unaffected.

“That it was so severe and lasted for three to four days should be of great concern. Had a young child or elderly person been similarly affected the results could have been fatal,” one of the affected members, NSW branch vice president John Norris, said yesterday.

The club has gave health authorities a list of all the venues its members visited while in Orange, with those affected to consider their legal options once the NSW Food Authority investigation has been completed, Mr Norris said.

“We are 99 per cent certain of the infection source and have relayed this information to authorities. If somebody isn’t charged to the full extent of the law then we will most certainly be taking civil action,” he said.

The NSW Food Authority confirmed it had allocated an investigator to look into the complaint

“We will investigate the matter, speak to management, kitchen staff and if need be, take samples,” a spokesperson for the NSW Food Authority said yesterday. It is expected suppliers will also be part of the investigation.


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