Presendrie Govender craved cold meat during her pregnancy, eating polony and Viennas regularly.
But 32 weeks into her pregnancy, she noticed her baby, Summer, had stopped moving and she was experiencing intense pain.
Just days later, on November 9 last year, Summer was delivered by caesarean section at City Hospital in Durban.
She was immediately taken to intensive care, where a ventilator kept her alive. Just a day after their child’s birth, Govender and her fiancé, Kyle, made the agonising decision to take their baby off life support.
“Because I had a very good pregnancy until my 32nd week, my dad – who did not understand what could possibly have gone wrong – advised we request a post mortem examination,” she states in her affidavit in support of an application for the certification of a class action lawsuit, filed by Richard Spoor Attorneys against Tiger Brands.
Blood tests indicated Summer had been infected with the bacterium Listeria monocytogene, and “this was the cause of her death”.
“I contracted listeriosis from consuming ready-to-eat processed foods sold by Tiger Brands and/or Enterprise Foods. I transmitted the infection to my unborn child in utero; she passed away just a day after birth.”
The devastated couple has lost their business and experience panic and anxiety attacks.
“We’ve been advised to seek medical help to deal with the trauma of losing a child.”