A major food manufacturer is recalling sandwiches, wraps and salads sold in major UK supermarkets because of a potential link to an E.coli outbreak.

The outbreak has seen a number of people across the UK in hospital and now officials said the move by Greencore Group is a “precautionary measure”.

Recalled products include sandwiches, wraps and salads sold at Sainsbury’s, Asda, Aldi, Morrisons, Co-op, and retail pharmacy chain Boots.

Discussing the incident, Darren Whitby, head of incidents at the Food Standards Agency, said: “Sandwich manufacturers are taking a precautionary measure to recall various sandwiches wraps and salads in response to findings from investigations by the Food Standards Agency (FSA), Food Standards Scotland (FSS) and UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA), who are working to identify the cause of an ongoing outbreak caused by shiga toxin-producing E.coli (Stec).”

Earlier this month, UKHSA confirmed at least 37 people had been admitted to hospital following the E. coli outbreak, which it believed to be linked to food.


Sandwiches have been pulled from supermarket shelves.Sandwiches have been pulled from supermarket shelves. (Image: Canva)

Mr Whitby added: “This is a complex investigation, and we have worked swiftly with the relevant businesses and the local authorities concerned to narrow down the wide range of foods consumed to a small number of salad leaf products that have been used in sandwiches and wraps.

“Following thorough food chain analysis, these products are being recalled as a precaution.

“The FSA is here to ensure that food is safe. If there are products on the market that are not, we won’t hesitate to take action to remove them.”

Andrew Opie, director of food and sustainability at the British Retail Consortium, said: “Food safety is the highest priority for our members and those who sell or prepare food are well-versed in food safety measures.

“Following investigations by the FSA and UKHSA regulators, a number of manufacturers in the supply chain are taking precautionary measures and issuing a recall notice for a small number of products.

The co-op's products are also affected.The co-op's products are also affected. (Image: PA)

“Retailers affected are taking swift action to remove these products from sale and are working closely with the Food Standards Agency to take any further action needed to minimise risk to their customers.”

An Asda spokesman said: “We have been made aware by Greencore, who supply Asda and other retailers with pre-packed sandwiches, that they are recalling a number of products as a precaution because of the possible presence of E.coli.

“The full list of products is available on the Asda product recalls webpage. If you have purchased any of these products, do not eat them, please bring them back to your nearest store where you will be given a full refund. You do not need your receipt.”


What is an E.coli infection?

E.coli are a group of bacteria which are found in the lining of the human gut, however, some E.coli bacteria can cause serious illness.

Most people contract an E.coli infection from consuming contaminated food or water and those who have the infection should recover in around 7 days.

What are the symptoms of an E.coli infection?

  • Stomach cramps
  • Diarrhoea (which can contain blood)
  • Fever
  • Nausea

How to reduce the risk of contracting an E.coli infection

  • Regularly wash your hands with warm water and soap
  • Wash all fruit and veg before cooking and make sure they’re cooked correctly
  • If you show any symptoms, avoid coming into contact with other people until 48 hours after your symptoms have passed

Navin Khosla, a pharmacist at NowPatient, explained: “The UK Health Security Agency is advising Brits to be vigilant after an E.coli outbreak was reported, which is believed to have been caused by a nationally distributed food item.

“Although a number of the 113 people who have contracted the infection have been admitted to hospital, in most cases, people will recover in around 7 days if they follow the correct guidance in terms of treatment.

Asda has been affected by the outbreak.Asda has been affected by the outbreak. (Image: PA)

“E.coli is found in the lining of the gut in almost all humans and animals, however, some E.coli bacteria which can be found in contaminated water and food can pose a serious risk to human health, so it’s important to be aware of the main symptoms associated with an E.coli infection. Stomach cramps, diarrhoea which contains blood and an occasional fever could indicate you have an infection.

“If you experience any of these symptoms, make sure you drink plenty of fluids, to help flush the infection out and if your symptoms persist, you may need a course of antibiotics which your GP can prescribe you.

“In order to avoid catching an E.coli infection, it’s crucial to wash your hands regularly with warm water and soap, as well as make sure all fresh fruit and vegetables are washed before you cook with them.

“If you think you may have an E.coli infection, try and avoid contact with anyone else until 48 hours after your symptoms have stopped.”