July 29, 2015

Fifth ND E. coli Case Confirmed at Red River Valley Fair

EcoliOutbreak

A fifth case of E. coli infection that may be linked to the Red River Valley Fair in West Fargo, North Dakota has been confirmed by the North Dakota Department of Health. All of the cases are children, all live in eastern North Dakota, and four of the five patients have been hospitalized. The investigation into the cause of the outbreak is ongoing. Anyone who attended the fair and has been sick with the symptoms of an E. coli infection is asked to fill out a survey on the North Dakota Department of Health website, even if you are feeling better. Those symptoms include nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, and diarrhea that may be bloody and/or watery. They usually appear within 10 days after exposure. If someone in your household was sick and other are not, also fill out the form; … [Read more...]

Less Than Half of Consumers Wash Hands After Handling Eggs

Broken Eggs FPB

A new study published in the Journal of Food Protection has found that only 48% of consumers wash their hands after handling raw eggs. Eggs can be contaminated with Salmonella bacteria, and that food-pathogen combination sickens thousands of Americans every year. Researchers were from RTI International, Tennessee State University, and Kansas State University. The study was partially funded by the Department of Agriculture's National Institute of Food and Agriculture. A 2013 web survey of 1,504 adult grocery shoppers was conducted. Based on self-reported data, most consumers store eggs in the fridge, as recommended, for no more than 3 to 5 weeks, as recommended.But after cracking eggs, 48.1% of respondents washed their hands with soap and water. And more than half of respondents … [Read more...]

Food & Water Watch Wants SEC To Reject GMO Salmon Stock Filings

Food & Water Watch has called on the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) to reject the stock registration filings of AquaBounty Technologies (ABTX), the maker of genetically engineered salmon, based on "misleading and erroneous claims the company is making in its attempt to join the NASDAQ stock exchange." The letter asks the SEC to make AquaBounty revise their document, since new scientific evidence allegedly shows GMO salmon do not grow as quickly as AquaBounty claims, and that the fish experience unique diseases. The letter was sent to Sean McKessy, Chief of the Office of the Whistleblower at the SEC. It claims that "omissions, errors, and false statements [were] found in Form 10 regulatory findings submitted to the SEC by AquaBounty Technologies." Wenonah Hauter, executive … [Read more...]

Brain Eating Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water

Water in Sink FPB

Last Wednesday, the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals found the amoeba Naegleria fowleri in St. Bernard Parish water system at a leaking sampling station. This system provides water for 44,000 residents in that parish. Louisiana has a new public drinking water surveillance program and this testing is part of that program. On July 28, 2015, the DHH issued another report stating that the Naegleria fowler amoeba was found in the Ascension Consolidated Utility District 1, which serves 1,800 residents in a small community north of Donaldsonville. A 60-day chlorine burn will be conducted at that site as well. That water system was not in compliance with the requirements for chloramine disinfectant levels. Tap water is safe for residents to drink, but, do not let the water get in … [Read more...]

Cold Smoked Salmon Recalled for Listeria in CA

Smoked Salmon FPB

The California Department of Public Health is reporting that cold smoked salmon is being recalled for possible Listeria monocytogenes contamination. There is no word on whether or not any illnesses have been reported. Illnesses caused by this bacteria can take up to 70 days to appear. The recalled products are Cold Smoked Salmon Deli Trays and Cold Smoked Salmon Trim produced by Certified Smoked Fish of Gardena, California. The lot number is #188 and other codes are CS300 on the trays, and CST50 on the trim. The product was produced on 7/7/2015. You can see the stores where the salmon was sold by visiting the CDPH web site. If you purchased this product, do not eat it. Discard in a sealed bag or return got the place of purchase for a full refund. Then wash your refrigerator with a … [Read more...]

KellBran Recalling Caramel Popcorn for Undeclared Milk

KellBran Recalled Caramel Popcorn

KellBran Candies of Ohio is recalling their caramel popcorn because it contains milk, one of the major food allergens, that is not reported on the label. Those who are allergic to milk could have a serious reaction if they eat this product. None have been reported. The recalled product is KellBran Caramel Popcorn in 8 ounce bags. Expiration dates are 11/30/2015 with lot code 181317 4 and 12/31/2015 with lot code 211830 6. The UPC number is 0 96637 50153 9. The popcorn was sold in Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Texas, North and South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Maryland, Connecticut, New York, Ohio, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Missouri, Kentucky, New Jersey, Arkansas, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, through various retail specialty grocery stores. If you purchased this … [Read more...]

Cyclospora Outbreak in Texas Increases Again

Cyclospora Outbreak

The Texas Department of State Health Services is reporting that the Cyclospora outbreak in that state has increased again. Now 205 people in that state are sickened with cyclosporiasis that is associated with cilantro imported from the Puebla region of Mexico. The FDA has issued an import alert on cilantro imported from that region in Mexico. That product will be detained if it reaches the border. Annually recurring outbreaks in 2012, 2013, 2014, and this year have prompted an investigation. FDA investigators found feces and toilet paper in some cilantro fields, and contamination caused by irrigation of fields with water contaminated with sewage. Other issues may include cleaning produce with contaminated water, and lack of adequate cleaning of equipment that is used to process the … [Read more...]

House of Representatives Passes DARK Act

tomato-fpb

Center for Food Safety is expressing "deep disappointment" that the Republican-controlled House of Representatives passed H.R. 1599, a bill that will not allow state and local governments to label and regulate genetically engineered foods. The bill codifies a voluntary labeling system approach, blocks the FDA from ever implementing mandatory GE food label, and would let food companies make misleading claims about how "natural" GE foods are. The bill is officially named The Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act of 2015. But opponents have dubbed it Deny Americans the Right to Know (DARK) Act. Andrew Kimbrell, executive director of Center for Food Safety said in a statement, "passage of this bill is an attempt by Monsanto and its agribusiness cronies to crush the democratic … [Read more...]

New Research Uses UVC Light on Fruits to Kill Pathogens

granny-smith-apple-fpb

New research conducted at Washington State University has found that ultraviolet C (UVC) light can kill foodborne pathogens on the surface of some fruits. This technology may be a good alternative for organic fruit processors who don't want to use chemicals on their products and must comply with the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) standards to help prevent outbreaks. The study was published in the International Journal of Food Microbiology. WSU food safety specialist Shyam Sablani and his colleagues decided to look at UVC light since it has a shorter wavelength than UVA or UVB light. Sablani said in a statement, "UVC radiation is present in sunlight; however, it is completely absorbed by the ozone layer and Earth's atmosphere. It has germicidal properties and can be effective … [Read more...]

Kroger Recalls Seasonings for Possible Salmonella

Recall

Kroger is recalling their brand name cinnamon, garlic powder, black pepper, and Bac'n Buds products because they may be contaminated with Salmonella bacteria. No illnesses have been reported in connection with these products. The stores under this recall are: Kroger, Ralphs, Food 4 Less, Foods Co., Fred Meyer, Fry's, King Soopers, City Market, Smith's, Dillons, Baker's, Gerbes, Jay C, Ruler Foods, Pay Less, Owen's, and Scott's. The recalled products are Kroger Ground Cinnamon in 18.3 ounce packages with UPC number 1111070034 and sell by date May 19 18PS4. Also recalled is Kroger Garlic Powder in 24.7 ounce packages with UPC number 1111070039 and sell by date May 18 17PS4. Kroger Coarse Ground Black Pepper in 17.1 ounce packages with UPC number 1111070041 and sell by dates of May 18 … [Read more...]

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