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Posts from the ‘Microbial Contamination’ Category

US: FDA says poor records stalled outbreak work; feedlot likely source of E. coli

Food Safety News: Federal officials won’t say definitively that contaminated canal water was behind this year’s deadly E. coli outbreak linked to romaine lettuce, but they are saying they “found no evidence in support of alternative explanations.” Another point made clear in an outbreak investigation report released yesterday puts the FDA firmly on record when it comes to antiquated shipping and receiving recordkeeping used by many in the leafy greens industry.

AU: Paper towels or air hand dryers: Which is better for the environment and hygiene?

ABC News: Given a choice, what do you use: a paper towel or an electric hand dryer? Or do you wipe your hands on your jeans and walk out the door? The paper-towel-vs-hand-dryer debate makes headlines whenever a study comes out in favour of   one or the other. Look at who doles out the money for these studies, though, and you’ll see it’s usually the “winning” side. Still, universities and research institutions do (hopefully) conduct the research independently, even if they receive industry funding. So let’s take a look at what they say.

US: 4 Million Pounds of Food Part of Massive Recall

WebMD: A massive recall involving nearly 4 million pounds of salads, wraps, and other products has been traced to a common supplier of onions and other vegetables. McCain Foods, headquartered in Canada, announced that its fire-roasted, caramelized, or sauteed frozen vegetables and fruits made at its Colton, CA, facility may have been contaminated. The products were sold in Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, Walmart, Kroger, and Target stores across the country.

US: Austrian Hepatitis A cases match strain in Swedish outbreak

Food Safety News: Austria has become part of a multi-country Hepatitis A outbreak with 31 confirmed cases linked to frozen strawberries imported from Poland. The outbreak of hepatitis A virus (HAV) is connected to the one recently declared over in Sweden which affected 20 people in six counties. Of these cases, 17 were confirmed and three were probable. Dates of symptom onset ranged from May 30 to July 10. Ages ranged from nine to 92 years and 13 out of 20 were women.

US: America’s enduring failure to prevent food-borne illness

Emily Atkin / The New Republic: The CDC’s green light to eat romaine again may have marked the end of the lettuce crisis in consumers’ minds, but the situation is far from over. The agency and the FDA are still investigating why and how a dangerous strand of E. coli wound up contaminating lettuce in Yuma. No single grower, harvester, processor, or distributor has been blamed, and investigators are still unsure whether contamination happened during the growing, washing, chopping, or bagging process.

Read the full article at The New Republic

AU: Frozen vegetables recall over fears of potential contamination not expected to generate consumer backlash

NSW Country Hour: Simplot, the largest Australian manufacturer of frozen vegetables, is confident consumers here will not be put off buying the local product in the wake of the recall of imported frozen vegetables announced on Monday.

Read the full article at the NSW Country Hour website

AU: Consumer alert: frozen vegetable product recalls

Food Standards Australia New Zealand: FSANZ today [9/07/2018] warned vulnerable people to check their freezers for recalled frozen vegetable products that are possibly contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes.

Read more

HU: Company stops production at frozen vegetable, fruit facility

Joe Whitworth / Food Safety News: Production is on hold at the Hungarian plant of the company linked to a deadly outbreak of Listeria monocytogenes from frozen vegetables in five European countries.

A spokesperson for Greenyard, a producer of fresh, frozen and prepared fruit and vegetables, told Food Safety News that the company is awaiting more data, information and analysis from the local authorities and EFSA (the European Food Safety Authority). The company is looking into alternative sourcing possibilities to supply customers.

Read the full article at the Food Safety News website

US: Texas officials report dozens sick from parasitic infections

Photo: Melanie Moser / US CDCP

Food Safety News: Texas officials warned the public Monday about a seasonal increase in infections from Cyclospora parasites, reporting there have been 56 confirmed cases since the beginning of May.

Neither this week’s outbreak notice nor a June 21 health advisory from the Texas State Department of Health Services (DSHS) referenced an ongoing cyclosporiasis outbreak in four other states. At least 185 people are infected in that outbreak, which is associated with trays of pre-cut fresh vegetables from Del Monte.

Further information:

AU: Melon industry aims to win back consumers in six steps

Great Lakes Advocate: The melon industry is looking to win back consumers through a six stage process after a Listeriosis outbreak earlier this year. Together with Hort Innovation,  the industry launched a six-pronged initiative to combat foodborne illness risks and support the sustainability of the melon industry.

Read the full article at the Great Lakes Advocate website