DAFF was under the spotlight at the recent media briefing in Pretoria today, as members of the press queried what role DAFF was playing in the current South African Listeria outbreak, and how the contaminated product relates back to the farmers.
Mr Mooketsa Ramasodi (Acting Director General for the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) advised that DAFF has been actively involved and have issued a directive to provincial authorities to increase surveillance in facilities.
When asked how food processors and the agri sector can help address the spread of listeria, Ramasodi said that all stakeholders should be working towards eliminating these pathogens in their facilities, and he enumerated some steps towards this goal:
Ramasodi also advised that manure is a potential source of contamination, when used on the farms over crops. He stressed that all food should be washed properly due to the potential contamination at soil level. This is where the consumer has a role to play.