Tiger Brands: We have sufficient protocols to deal with listeriosis

The death toll from the outbreak stands at 180 but the company says there is no direct link between the fatalities and its products.

Tiger Brands CEO Lawrence MacDougall answers questions during a media briefing on 5 March 2018. Picture: Sethembiso Zulu/ EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Tiger Brands says it has sufficient protocols in place to deal with listeriosis and has done all it can to fight the disease.

The death toll from the outbreak stands at 180 but the company says there is no direct link between the fatalities and its products.

Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi announced on Sunday that two of Tiger Brands' Enterprise factories had produced contaminated products.

Tiger Brands CEO Lawrence MacDougall is adamant that the company’s products have not been linked to any deaths, saying listeria is a common bacterium in South Africa.

“Enterprise Foods follows stringent protocols for the manufacture of quality food products.”

Despite the bacteria linked to two outlets, he says his company will not apologise unless there is proof of negligence.

“We have brought in independent experts on listeriosis to work with us and provide scientific expertise that will be required to get to the bottom of this.”

The company is awaiting a report on the intensity of the outbreak with its Enterprise factories in Polokwane and Germiston remaining closed.

At the same time, Five Southern African Development Community countries have announced they are banning processed meat from South Africa. They include Zambia, Namibia, Mozambique, Malawi and Uganda.

WATCH: Tiger brands CEO: No link between our products and the 180 deaths