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Food safety lawyers voice concerns over reports of antibiotic resistant superbug in supermarket pork

Food safety lawyers voiced their concerns after it was reported that an investigation found that some British supermarket pork has been infected with a potentially fatal superbug.

Posted on 06 July 2022

The Guardian and the Bureau of Investigative Journalism reported the results of a pioneering UK study commissioned by the campaign group World Animal Protection.

Fera Science investigated how much antibiotic-resistant enterococci was in pork produced under food assurance schemes and non-assured products.

The Guardian reports that researchers bought 103 pork samples – 22 labelled as Red Tractor, 27 each from RSPCA and organic schemes, and 27 with no assurance label – from Yorkshire supermarkets and online shops.

The meat was analysed for enterococci bacteria. Twenty-five infected samples were then tested for antibiotic resistance. Twenty-three samples contained enterococci resistant to at least one antibiotic.

The UK has so far not followed the EU with tougher regulations banning the feeding of antibiotics to groups of healthy animals, despite warnings of the risks of antibiotic-resistant disease.

Leigh Day food safety lawyers have previously investigated claims of food poisoning involving supermarkets and have investigated cases of salmonella.

Solicitor Angela Bruno said:

“This report of the study revealing the prevalence of antibiotic resistant enterococci bacteria in British pork is extremely concerning. The safety of food on sale in the UK is of the utmost importance and anyone who believes that they have been affected by unsafe food products is encouraged to seek legal advice.”

Angela Bruno
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Angela Bruno

Angela is a leading product safety and consumer rights lawyer. She also co-manages the food safety team at the London office.

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