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Originally Published by Fortune Well

Multidrug-resistant E. coli were found in 40% of store-bought meat samples tested in one Spanish city in 2020, according to data that will be presented this weekend at the European Congress of Clinical Microbiology & Infectious Diseases in Copenhagen.

Researchers analyzed 100 samples—25 each of chicken, turkey, beef, and pork—from supermarkets in Oviedo, Spain, during the first year of the pandemic.

The good news: The majority (73%) of the samples contained E. coli., but levels that were within food safety limits.

The kicker: Nearly half contained multidrug resistant and/or potentially disease-causing E. coli. Forty contained E. coli resistant to most penicillins and cephalosporins, common antibiotics. And nearly a third contained E. coli that can cause issues outside of the GI tract, like urinary tract infection, sepsis, and/or neonatal meningitis.

What’s more, one sample contained a type of E. coli resistant to colistin, a last-resort antibiotic used to treat infections resistant to all other antibiotics.

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