Brisbane catering firm linked to salmonella death

UPDATED 15/11/13 8.30AM

Piccalilli Catering has been identified as the Brisbane catering company at the centre of a salmonella outbreak, which has contributed to the death of one elderly lady and 220 others falling ill.

According to the ABC, up to 700 people may have been exposed, after the catering company provided food to up to 40 different venues for Melbourne Cup celebrations earlier this month.

A statement on Piccalili's website says its catering for the events included fresh mayonnaise made by its chefs from eggs purchased from a Brisbane fresh food wholesaler, and the company believes these eggs are the source of the food-borne illness.

"We are deeply upset and distressed by this outcome. We always pride ourselves on sourcing the freshest Australian ingredients for our kitchens. We feel very disappointed and let down that the normally reliable fresh food supply chain has failed us – and our clients – on this occasion," Piccalilli Catering co-owner, Helen Grace, said.

"Having sourced those eggs from a normally reputable fresh food market, we had no reason to believe they were not up to the very high standards we demand of our suppliers. Suffice to say we will not source produce from this supplier in the future. We will leave it to our insurers and lawyers to determine what other action should be taken."

The company said it has never experienced an incident like this in its 25 year history, and is now undertaking a thorough investigation of its supply chain arrangements.

It's believed salmonella didn't cause the 77 year old Brisbane woman's death, but may have been a contributing factor.

ORIGINAL STORY, 14/11/13

An elderly woman has died and 220 people have fallen ill from a salmonella outbreak, linked to Melbourne Cup events earlier this month.

According to the ABC, food at up to 40 different venues, all provided by the same Brisbane catering company, is at the centre of an investigation into the outbreak, which has resulted in the death of a 77 year old woman.