UK & World News
Salmonella Confirmed At Newcastle Food Festival
Initial tests have confirmed salmonella to be the cause of a stomach bug after partygoers became ill at a street festival in Newcastle.
Up to 200 people have reported symptoms of sickness and diarrhoea after being struck down by food poisoning at an Asian food festival in Newcastle.
Around 12,000 people ate at the Street Spice Festival held from February 28 to March 2.
Organisers said they were "shocked and upset" to hear of the widespread gastric symptoms among diners.
Environmental health officers are urging anyone who has fallen ill to contact them on the phone number below.
Vegetarians Prem Kaur and her 15-year-old daughter Devindar became violently sick the day after attending the food festival.
The 36-year-old caterer, from South Shields, said: "I woke up the next morning and had to run to the toilet. I felt like I was going to vomit.
"My daughter was so bad we had to call an ambulance to come. This has put me off street food for life."
Her husband Malta Singh, 39, an IT consultant said: "As a concerned father and husband, seeing them in that state is very concerning.
"You've got to ask questions about the hygiene."
Dozens contacted Sky Tyne and Wear using Facebook and Twitter following the event, with some saying they had been ill for more than four days and were too ill to go to work.
Others were in touch to say they had suffered no symptoms at all and had thoroughly enjoyed the event.
Newcastle City Council's environmental health officers have been working closely with the Health Protection Agency to establish the source of the outbreak.
Stephen Savage, director of regulatory services and public protection, said: "The event organisers are cooperating fully and we are continuing to investigate the source of the outbreak.
Street Spice organiser Bob Arora said: "I must emphasise that the Street Spice at Life Festival was held to raise money for Brain Tumour UK, and we consulted with experts throughout the project with many years of experience in the food industry.
"We also took hygiene and food safety extremely seriously at the event with measures far outweighing normal food festival conditions, ie walk-in fridges, constant temperature probing, hot and cold water sinks, with experienced national and local exhibitors supplying their own equipment.
"Over 10,000 visitors attended the festival, the vast majority having a fantastic experience.
"I send my sincerest thoughts and apologies to anyone who has become ill and emphasise that we are currently co-operating fully with the Health Protection Agency and Newcastle Council with a view to analysing the source of the outbreak in due course."
:: To report symptoms, call Regulatory Services and Public Protection at Newcastle City Council on (0191) 278 7878
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what do you think?
i have seen many of these festivals , much of the food i would not touch with a bargepole.
Festival food and street food. . . Mmmmm. Dodgy. I stick to the big retailers for my horsemeat and other contaminants. I'm safe with the big retailers
street food has always the danger of loads of flies settling on it
Amazes me how street festivals are allowed to do food in this way.