Public Health England have revealed one UK supermarket may have infected thousands of people with hepatitis after selling infected meat.
Scientists traced the shopping habits of 60 patients found to have the HEV G3-2 strain of Hepatitis E.
The Public Health England report said the infected people had all bought own-brand sausages or pre-packed sliced ham from the same chain, which is being referred to as ‘Supermarket X’.
The virus is mainly carried by pigs in the Netherlands and Germany. with the meat from the animals eventually ending up in products sold in the UK.
The effects of the infection include health problems such as liver cirrhosis and neurological damage.
The researches also concluded that approximately 150,000 to 200,000 people in Britain are infected every year from the contaminated meat.
As a result, blood donations are now being screened for the virus, as well as donated organs and tissues.
The findings were compiled last year however, have been witheld from public knowledge due to being of a sensitive nature.