Appendix 9.1

Table 9.1  Foodborne infections, causative agents and commonly affected foodstuffs.
Disease categoryDiseaseCausative agent(s) Foods commonly involved
BacterialTyphoid feverSalmonella typhi Raw vegetables and fruits, salads, pastries, unpasteurised milk and milk products, meat
Paratyphoid fever Salmonella paratyphi
ShigellosisShigella species All foods handled by unhygienic workers, potato or egg salad, lettuce, raw vegetables
CholeraVibrio choleraFruits and vegetables washed with contaminated water
Non-typhoid salmonellosisSalmonella species, e.g. Salmonella typhimurium Eggs, poultry, undercooked meals, unpasteurised dairy products, sea foods, sausages
BrucellosisBrucella species, mostly Brucella melitensisMilk and dairy products from infected animals
Anthrax Bacillus anthracisContaminated raw and undercooked meat from sick and dying oxen, cows, sheep, goats, camels, etc
Bovine tuberculosisMycobacterium bovisUnpasteurised milk, dairy products or meat from tuberculosis-infected cows
E.coli infectionEscherichia coliBeef, dairy products, fresh products, raw produce (potatoes, lettuce, sprouts, fallen apples), salads
ListeriosisListeria monocytogenesMilk, cheese, ice cream, poultry, red meat

Viral gastroenteritis (VGE)

Rotavirus, caliciviruses including norovirus, astrovirusAny food contaminated with the virus
Viral hepatitisHepatitis A and E virusesRaw shellfish from polluted water, sandwiches, salad and desserts
PoliomyelitisPolio virusAny food contaminated with the virus
Rift valley feverRift valley fever virusAny food contaminated with blood or aerosols from infected domestic animals or their aborted fetuses
ParasiticTaeniasis (tapeworm infection)Taenia speciesRaw beef, raw pork
Amoebiasis Entamoeba histolytica Any food soiled with faeces
Trichinosis Trichinella spiralis Insufficiently cooked pork and pork products
AscariasisAscaris lumbricoides Foods contaminated with soil, especially foods that are eaten raw, such as salads, vegetables
GiardiasisGiardia lamblia Any contaminated food item
ToxoplasmosisToxoplasma gondiiRaw or undercooked meat and any food contaminated with cat faeces
CryptosporidiosisCryptosporidium parvumAny contaminated food item
ParasiticHydatid diseaseEchinococcus granulosus Any food contaminated with dog faeces
DiphyllobothriasisDiphyllobothrium latumRaw or uncooked fish
Trichuriasis Trichuris trichuria Any food contaminated with soil
FungalFungal infections Aspergillus Penicillium YeastsCereal, grains, flour, bread, cornmeal, popcorn, peanut butter, apples and apple products, mouldy supermarket foods, cheese, dried meats
Table 9.2  Food poisoning, toxin type, causative agents and commonly affected foodstuffs.
Disease categoryDiseasesToxin type and causative agentFoods commonly involved
Natural toxins in foodsNeurolathyrismBeta-oxalyl amino-alanineLathyrus sativus (guaya)
Mushroom poisoning Phalloidine and alkaloids found in some poisonous mushroomsPoisonous mushrooms such as species of Amanita phalloides and Amanita muscaria
Bacterial toxinsStaphylococcal food poisoningEntero-toxins from Staphylococcus aureusMilk and milk products, sliced meat, poultry, legumes
Perfringens food poisoning Strain of Clostridium welchii/ C.perfringensInadequately heated or reheated meat poultry and legumes
Botulism food poisoning Toxin of Clostridium botulinumHome-canned foods, low acid vegetables, corn and peas
Escherichia coli food poisoningEnterohaemorrhagic Escherichia coli O157:H7 Ground beef, dairy products and raw beef
Bacillus cereus food poisoning.Enterotoxins of Bacillus cereusCereals, milk and dairy products vegetables, meats, cooked rice
Fungal toxinsErgotismA toxin (ergot) produced by a group of fungi called Claviceps purpurea Rye, wheat, sorghum, barley
Aflatoxin food poisoningAflatoxin produced by some groups of fungus (e.g. Aspergillus flavus, Aspergillus parasiticus) Cereal grains, groundnuts, peanuts, cottonseed, sorghum
Chemical toxinsChemical poisoningHeavy metals (e.g. lead, mercury, cadmium)Fish, canned food Foods contaminated by utensils or coated with heavy metals
Pesticides and insecticides

Residues on crops, vegetables, fruits

Accidental poisoning where some chemicals may be mistaken for food ingredients

When contaminated containers are used to hold stored foods

AdditivesVarious food items where unauthorised additives may be added as colouring agents, sweeteners, preservatives, flavouring agents, etc.

Self-Assessment Questions (SAQs) for Study Session 9