The NSW Food Authority again released details last week of testing for Listeria that identified Riverina property, Rombola Family Farms, as the source of the recent outbreak. It follows reports that there was no clear link to the property.
Genetic sequencing was used to test samples. More than 30 samples of melons through the supply chain, including retail and on farm, tested positive to Listeria monocytogenes.
Additional testing found L. monocytogenes in the packing area. All L. monocytogenes samples had the same genetic sequence as human cases. NSW Food Authority believes the cause of the outbreak was a combination of environmental conditions and weather contaminating the surface of the fruit, with low levels of the bacteria persisting after the washing process.
Throughout the incident the NSW Food Authority worked with the Australian Melon Association to support its members, providing a written letter advising of its confidence that all affected product has been removed from the supply chain.