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Posts from the ‘Water – Field Operations and Irrigation’ Category

Researchers seek insight into Cyclospora risk

US – Center for Produce Safety: A handful of Cyclospora cayetanensis outbreaks tied to U.S.-grown produce since 2018 have prompted several researchers to begin looking at possible domestic sources of the pathogen and potential industry risks. Read more.

See a short video on this research, Investigating Sources of Cyclospora in the Southeastern US, here.

Pathogen persistence paper published in Agriculture

AU – The paper ‘Persistence of Human Pathogens in Manure-Amended Australian Soils Used for Production of Leafy Vegetables‘ is now available online in a special issue of the journal Agriculture. The paper, authored by Dr Jenny Ekman and others, has been published as part of the research undertaken for the Hort Innovation project ‘Pathogen Persistence from Paddock to Plate’. Hort Innovation, together with the vegetable industry, completed a study on the survival of human pathogens in soil and irrigation water, and on leafy vegetables. The project was led by the Fresh Produce Safety Centre, in conjunction with Applied Horticultural Research, Freshcare and the University of Sydney. Read more about the project here, read the project report on the Hort Innovation website here and read the full journal article here.

Pathogen persistence on leafy vegetables

Pathogen persistence webinars:
Dr Jenny Ekman, AHR

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SEA: WHO framework targets improved food safety in South East Asia

Food Safety News: The World Health Organization (WHO) has identified key priorities to improve food safety in the next five years in South East Asia.

The Framework for Action on Food Safety in the WHO South-East Asia Region covers 2020 to 2025 and has guidance for authorities across the food chain and those involved in food safety emergencies, preparedness and response. Several countries are included. More here.

 

Key learnings from the CPS 2020 Research Symposium

The Center for Produce Safety in the US has prepared key learnings summaries of its Annual Research Symposium, with five sessions held over June and July 2020.

The full set of Key Learnings from the CPS Research Symposium is here. The following text is drawn from the CPS Key Learnings:

During Session 1 held on June 23, 2020, the Symposium explored the use of computer-based modelling to help address two burning issues for the produce industry: understanding potential Listeria growth and persistence in whole produce commodities and the development of sampling strategies to support the validity of assumptions surrounding microbial testing needs and design of acceptable protocols (Key Learnings Session I).

In Session 2, the Symposium expanded the knowledge base on Listeria monocytogenes and its persistence and growth on specific commodities and fresh-cut products and examined novel methods to control Listeria growth on food contact surfaces (Key Learnings Session II).

In Session 3, the Research Symposium explored projects that took wholistic, systems approaches to solving challenges with pest intrusion into leafy greens fields, pathogen transference on co-managed farms and the impact of traits associated with concepts of soil health on pathogen persistence. It also examined Cyclospora presence in the irrigation canal systems in the Yuma, AZ production region (Key Learnings Session III).

Session 4 featured the use of genomics and metagenomics to address challenges in identifying new or revisited indicators and index testing-targets of human viral pathogens that may ultimately be used in the produce industry, the distribution and relatedness of Listeria species in the U.S., and the use of that information to better understand source-risk related to facilities and product, identification of competitors of Listeria monocytogenes that might control that organism in composts, and build our knowledge base of bacterial pathogen persistence and rates of genetic diversification in the Yuma and Salinas vegetable production regions (Key Learnings Session IV).

Session 5 featured research describing the “die-off” rates of human pathogens in agricultural water from three locations around the world, the persistence of pathogens in shade-house production environments, pathogen persistence in wash water systems and the potential role
of damaged cells to contaminate washed products, the efficacy of irrigation water sanitation and the potential role of sediments in canal systems as reservoirs of human pathogens (Key Learnings Session V).

US: Canal water likely source of E. coli in romaine-related outbreak

Coral Beach / Food Safety News: Federal officials say contaminated canal water near romaine lettuce growing fields is the likely source...

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US: Practical pointers around submitting water samples for food safety

Michigan State University: Water sampling to meet federal on-farm food safety guidelines can be confusing. This article helps eliminate some confusion about taking and submitting a water sample.

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US: Can the FSMA improve safety of frozen berry production?

FPSC: Can the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) provide a framework to improve practices and boost exports for Chilean raspberry producers?

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AU: How salad vegetable surfaces harbour pathogens — and it’s not how you expect

foodprocessing.com.au: Researchers at the University of Illinois College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences (ACES) decided to look at how viruses could stick to the surface of 24 common salad vegetables. They expected to establish that the small virus particles could ‘hide’ in the rough structures of the cuticle, the waxy layer that protects the plant against diseases and reduces water loss.

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SA: Microbiological food safety status of commercially produced tomatoes from production to marketing

Journal of Food Protection: Tomatoes have been implicated in various microbial disease outbreaks and are considered a potential vehicle for foodborne pathogens. Traceback studies mostly implicate contamination during production and/or processing. The microbiological quality of commercially produced tomatoes was thus investigated from the farm to market, focusing on the impact of contaminated irrigation and washing water, facility sanitation, and personal hygiene. A total of 905 samples were collected from three largescale commercial farms from 2012 through 2014.

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