Organic veggie health alert

DOCTORS have put out a health warning after a Plettenberg Bay chef died after contracting a rare parasitic disease last seen in South Africa 50 years ago.

Another woman – a 73-year-old pensioner from Nature's Valley in the Eden District – who also contracted the disease after eating raw organically grown watercress, has since recovered.

The disease, commonly known as liver rot, is so rare in South Africa that medication had to be flown in from the United States to treat the two women.

The watercress was bought at farm stalls in Plettenberg Bay and Nature's Valley on the Garden Route.

Only three cases of human fascioliasis, or liver rot, have been diagnosed in South Africa previously, the last one back in 1964.

Two of those cases were also linked to the consumption of watercress, while the cause in a third case was unknown.

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