Prior to the 1990s, most methicillin-resistant (MRSA) was hospital-associated (HA-MRSA); community-associated MRSA (CA-MRSA) then began to cause infections outside the health-care environment. The third significant emergence of MRSA has been in livestock animals [livestock-associated MRSA (LA-MRSA)]. The widespread and rapid growth in CA-MRSA and LA-MRSA has raised the question as to whether MRSA is indeed a food-borne pathogen. The observations on animal-to-animal and animal-to-human transfer of LA-MRSA have prompted research examining the origin of LA-MRSA and its capacity to cause zoonotic disease in humans. This review summarizes the current knowledge about MRSA from food-producing animals and foods with respect to the role of these organisms to act as food-borne pathogens and considers the available tools to track the spread of these organisms. It is clear that LA-MRSA and CA-MRSA and even HA-MRSA can be present in/on food intended for human consumption, but we conclude on the basis of the published literature that this does not equate to MRSA being considered a food-borne pathogen.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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