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FSA detects low levels of AMR e. coli in pork and beef

A study from the UK’s Food Standards Agency (FSA) has detected very low levels of antimicrobial resistant e. coli bacteria in retail pork and beef.

27 November 2020, at 9:37am

According to reporting in Food Safety News, less than 1 percent of sampled meat in the study contained antimicrobial resistant e. coli and none of the meat samples were above the detection limit of 100 bacteria per gram of meat.

The study, which was conducted in 2019, used 315 beef and 313 pork samples from retail locations across the UK. The meat samples contained very low levels of AMR bacteria and suggests that the UK’s efforts to reduce antibiotic use in the agriculture sector are have a positive effect.

Paul Cook, FSA’s science lead in microbiological risk assessment, said the results were reassuring.

“We will continue our work to fill the evidence gap of the role that food plays in antimicrobial resistance. The risk of getting AMR-related infections through the consumption and handling of contaminated meat is very low, as long as you follow good hygiene and cooking practices,” he said.

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Read the full research summary in Food Safety News.