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Food Borne Illness | Infectious Disease
Food borne illnesses or food poisoning can be very serious and deadly. If you have been injured or a family member has died as a result of food poisoning you may be entitled to compensation. Charney Lawyers is one of the few law firms in Canada with a history of specializing in food poisoning lawsuits.
Charney Lawyers has an established reputation for successfully representing food poisoning/ contamination victims.
We are one of the few firms in Canada with the necessary skills and experience to litigate food borne illness claims. We have the expertise required to obtain fair compensation for our clients who have suffered injuries due to the negligent manufacture and sale of contaminated food.
Food poisoning and contamination outbreaks are in many cases the result of negligence during the manufacturing, preparation and sale process. Food poisoning can also occur in hospitals and long term care facilities. The consumption of contaminated food can lead to very serious and permanent injuries and even death.
The Charney Group acted for plaintiffs and numerous victims of the listeriosis contamination outbreak, in national class action proceedings against Maple Leaf Foods. Certified and settlement approved March 9, 2009. This was the largest food contamination settlement in Canadian history. See Bilodeau v Maple Leaf Foods Inc.  O.J. No.1006.
Food Borne Illness Class Actions
Maple Leaf Foods Class Action
Charney Lawyers also represented the families of injured and deceased pets in a trans-national class action, commonly known as the Menu Foods pet food contamination class action (Settlement pending 2008). Our Group was the only firm to commence a claim against the retailers of contaminated pet foods in addition to the manufacturer.
As a result of our innovative legal approach to food litigation, the Ontario Superior Court in Whiting et al v. Menu Foods Income Fund  recognized for the first time, the tort of Strict Liability as an available cause of action against manufacturers, distributors, and retailers of contaminated food.
Menu Foods Class Action
The application of Strict Liability means that a plaintiff, in a food contamination claim need only establish two criteria:
- the product was contaminated; and
- a consumer used the product and experienced an injury
The law in this area does not require the plaintiff to establish an absolute connection between the product and the injury nor must the plaintiff explain how the defendant was negligent.
Charney Lawyers handles food contamination lawsuits involving many different pathogens. Some of the most common are Listeria, Hepatitis A, Botulism, E. coli, Campylobacter, Salmonella, Norovirus, and Shigella.
We are also experienced litigating cases which deal with other non pathogen contaminants. Such as food tampering as in the case of a rat head found in a hamburger of a major fast food retailer.
See Abdijama (Litigation guardian of) v. McDonald's Restaurants of Canada Ltd.,  O.J. No. 4312, 134 A.C.W.S. (3d) 564 (Sup. Ct. of. J.).
- Health Canada - Health Canada is responsible for setting food safety policies and standards.
- Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) - The CFIA is responsible for enforcing the food safety policies and standards that Health Canada sets.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) - The CDC investigates foodborne illness outbreaks in the United States. The CDC website has helpful information on foodborne illness.
Below are links to CDC specific foodborne pathogens: