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Posts from the ‘Crisis Management’ Category

Take a deep breath and reflect on the hep A saga, suggests Richard Bennett

I’ve given a few presentations over recent years about crisis management, starting with the need to prevent a crisis as much as possible by having the right attitude towards food safety backed up with the necessary systems. I put attitude first for a reason.

The next stage is to be prepared. Despite the best prevention systems and intentions, glitches happen and you might find yourself in need of a plan to manage the unthinkable. Good prevention and preparation will make all the difference to response and recovery. There’s plenty of evidence to show that resilience – the ability to bounce back – is almost directly related to how you respond, which is directly related to what you have done to prevent and prepare.

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EU: Growers and industry hit by $1.3 bn in losses due to 2011 outbreak of E. Coli

Food Safety News: The World Health Organization (WHO) has totaled up some economic costs of the 2011 outbreak of the rare and deadly E. coli O104:H4 centered on Northern Europe. Farmers and industries lost $1.3 billion, and emergency aid provided to 22 European states cost another $236 million, according to WHO.

The novel E. coli strain was the cause of the May through June 2011 outbreak that saw 3,950 people infected, with 53 deaths blamed on the deadly pathogen. All but two of the deaths occurred in Germany.

Public health officials in Germany initially thought the source of the contamination was cucumbers imported from Spanish greenhouses, but that theory proved incorrect. It was a mistake that Spanish growers said cost them $200 million a week. Russia banned imports of all EU fresh produce in June 2011.

Click here to read the full story at Food Safety News

Food safety expert says frozen berries hepatitis crisis a ‘wake-up call’ for fresh produce supply chain

Melbourne, AU. — A food safety expert has urged companies across the fresh fruit, vegetable and nutsupply chain to redouble their food safety efforts in the face of an outbreak of foodborne illness attributed to hepatitis A virus (HAV), which has left at least 10 people infected in Australia.

Richard Bennett, Technology Manager at the Fresh Produce Safety Centre Australia-New Zealand (FPSC), has authored a fact sheet to help both industry and consumers to understand the food safety issues and dispel some of the myths associated with the current frozen berries hepatitis crisis.

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GS1 Recallnet: Half-day Information & Training Sessions

19 November 2014
GS1 Australia is hosting free information and optional training sessions on product recall using GS1 Recallnet. GS1 Recallnet is a secure, online portal used to streamline the recall and notification process.

The Melbourne event will focus on the Primary Grower / Producer and the challenges that a recall event brings to this sector.

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Back up the food safety training with a good book, writes Richard Bennett

There’s a lot of people responsible for grower, packer or processor quality assurance and food safety who are not technically trained in QA and food safety. That’s just a fact of life that reflects the size, structure and necessities of many fresh produce businesses – small, family and tight. It’s also the reason why some QA standards and customers insist on a minimum level of training for the person(s) responsible for managing food safety in the business, with some now also providing the required training.

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It’s a shame to let a China food scandal go to waste

Jeffrey Towson and Jonathan Woetzel write: Every month there’s another food scandal in China. Sewer oil. Lamb seasoned with rat. Exploding melons. And now tainted Western hamburgers and fast food is the latest. In our view, this is all to be expected. If you are in the food or restaurant business in China, you are almost certainly going to have a scandal. It’s practically inevitable. And it’s an opportunity you shouldn’t miss.

Read the full article at The South China Morning Post website.

Influenza pandemic will impact on fresh and processed produce industry, writes Richard Bennett

On 23rd September, SBS ONE’s Insight program ran a hypothetical-style question and answer forum on the subject of the impact of an influenza pandemic on the Australian community. The discussion included the health sector response, the rush to produce an effective vaccine, the role of emergency services, the impact on the Australian economy and how we would maintain the supply of food to the Australian population.

New food safety & technology post by Richard Bennett on the PMA A-NZ Blog. View the full post here: http://ift.tt/1t1b1N0

Image credit: Dr Terrence Tumpey

Final Report Adds Details to USA E. coli Outbreak from Trader Joe’s Salads

James Andrews writes: In October 2013, 33 people in four [USA] states were sickened by E. coli O157:H7 in an outbreak that was quickly traced back to pre-packaged salads sold at Trader Joe’s grocery locations.

On Monday, the California Department of Public Health released its final report on the outbreak with a wealth of new details on the investigation, including two previously unreported additional salad products associated with the outbreak.

Read the full article at Food Safety News

Image credit: Sakura / Flickr, CC BY 2.0

“Learn from the past, because history has a habit of repeating itself” writes Richard Bennett

What’s the difference between a serious typhoid outbreak in Aberdeen, Scotland in 1964 and the tragic – was it cucumber or sprouts? – E. coli outbreak in Germany in 2011? Not a lot according to this article and the even worse news is that major foodborne illness outbreaks are most likely to happen…

New food safety & technology post by Richard Bennett on the PMA A-NZ Blog . View the full post here: http://ift.tt/1oYx2cq

Image credit: E. coli with flagella by AJ Cann CC BY-SA 2.0

Resilient Organisations – helping New Zealand businesses bounce back

resorgs.org.nz: Resilient Organisations (ResOrgs) is a public good research programme based in New Zealand. We have been researching what makes organisations resilient to crises since 2004.

ResOrgs is a collaboration between top New Zealand research universities, particularly the University of Canterbury and the University of Auckland. We are funded by the Natural Hazards Platform and supported by a diverse group of industry partners and advisors.

We are a multi-disciplinary team of over 20 researchers, representing a synthesis of engineering, science and business leadership aimed at transforming organisations into those that both survive major events and thrive in the aftermath.

See resorgs.org.nz for further information.