Salmonella outbreak in Finland

13 July 2021

Article: 55/2802

In the weeks leading up to the beginning of July 2021, a large Salmonella outbreak affected 442 people, including 377 children, in Jyväskylä, Finland. Most of the cases affected those who attended or worked in pre-school or daycare centres, with the outbreak linked to fresh salad, in particular iceberg lettuce imported from Sweden.

Advice for travellers

Salmonella is one of the major causes of diarrhoeal disease and is widely distributed throughout the world. All travellers are advised to:

  • practice strict food and water precautions, including avoiding uncooked, partially cooked, cold or reheated meats, raw eggs, and unpasteurised milk or cheese 
  • wash their hands thoroughly with soap, or use alcohol hand gel, prior to eating or drinking, after contact with animals (particularly reptiles), and after going to the lavatory 
  • rinse salad leaves under clean running water, discard any outer leaves and dry with a clean cloth or paper towel prior to eating

Until this outbreak is over, travellers should check country labelling of salad and avoid eating iceberg lettuce imported from Sweden.

Source: TRAVAX, 7 July 2021