Nestle To Boost Study of Food Infections

LAUSANNE, Switzerland (AP) — Nestle SA, the world's biggest food and drink company, says it is boosting research to tackle the threat of ever-stronger strains of bacteria and germs in food manufacturing.

The Vevey, Switzerland-based company says it will initially boost research into several types of food-borne bacteria — particularly a dangerous strain of bacterium E. coli that infects people and pumps out a poison called Shiga toxin — and viruses Norovirus and Hepatitis A.

Nestle opened a new $5 million suite of labs Thursday that industry experts say is among the world's most advanced microbiology research facilities and the most sophisticated in the food industry.

A European outbreak of the Shiga toxin in the summer of 2011 infected about 4,000 people, mostly in Germany, and caused 50 deaths.

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