Food poisoning claimed 258 lives in China last year, up 31.6 percent year-on-year, the Ministry of Health said here on Wednesday.
In total, 506 food poisoning cases were reported last year, down 26.5 percent from the previous year. They involved 13,280 people.
There were 11 food poisoning incidents involving 100 people or more, down 15 percent year-on-year, according to the ministry.
Most of the fatal food poisoning incidents were caused by toxic seafood, meat and produce, accounting for 37 percent of the cases and 64 percent of the deaths.
Toxic mushrooms were the top killer. The 88 cases reported left113 people dead and 526 people affected, the figures showed.
Food poisoning mostly occurred between July and September when higher temperatures helped the growth of harmful bacteria.
Most food poisoning cases occurred in households and schools, the ministry said.