Staphylococcus aureus

Staphylococcus aureus is a foodborne bacterium that can be transmitted through air droplets or aerosol when coughing or sneezing. Some healthy humans carry this bacterium in the nose, in the back of the throat and on the skin.

Staphylococcus aureus bacteria on mucus on a nasal hair

Food poisoning bacteria: Staphylococcus aureus

What food sources can it be found in?

  • Ready-to-eat foods that are hand-made (eg sandwiches)
  • Cooked meats
  • Unpasteurised milk and related products

What are the symptoms?

  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Diarrhoea

How can you avoid/control it?

  • High standards of personal hygiene (hands are the main carrier of bacteria)
  • Wash hands thoroughly before preparing food and after sneezing or coughing
  • When preparing food, keep any cuts covered with a blue plaster
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