A recent outbreak of listeria which led to one person's death has seen many questions what the infection is and the symptoms it causes.

It comes after the Food Standards Agency (FSA) and UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) issued the warning on Friday, March 25 after “exceptionally high levels” of listeria were found in some of the cheeses.

With The Old Cheese Room in Wiltshire shared that they extended its recall of Baronet, Baby Baronet and Mini Baronet Soft Cheeses because listeria monocytogenes have been found in some batches.

The recall included packs sizes 1kg, 270g and 200g, and best-before dates of March 21 and 22, and April 4, 10, 11, 12, 16 and 18.

The outbreak also so the UKHSA to identify three listeria cases potentially linked to an outbreak and said one person has died.

What is Listeria?

According to the NHS, Listeria known as Listeriosis is an "infection caused by bacteria called listeria. It usually goes away on its own, but can cause serious problems for some people."

What are the symptoms of listeria?

For many people, listeria has no symptoms or only causes mild symptoms over a few days.

With the NHS that these are symptoms typically:

  • a high temperature of 38C or above
  • aches and pains
  • chills
  • feeling or being sick
  • diarrhoea

However, they did add that if you are pregnant then you may also suffer from a stomach ache or notice your baby move less than usual.

This is because babies with listeriosis may also " be irritable and feed less than usual."

Who has a higher risk if you catch listeria?

For many, listeriosis is not serious however, some have a higher risk than others, these are:

  • people who are pregnant
  • newborn babies
  • people over 65 years of age
  • people with a condition that weakens their immune system, such as cancer, liver disease or kidney disease
  • people having treatment that weakens their immune system, such as chemotherapy or steroid tablets
  • people with diabetes who are unable to keep their blood sugar level down, even with treatment (uncontrolled diabetes)

You can find out more information via the NHS website.