August 21, 2014

Back to School Lunch Safety Tips for Parents


The USDA is offering back to school safety tips for parents. Children are at high risk of contracting food poisoning because their immune systems are still developing. Children under the age of 5 have the highest incidence of Salmonella, E. coli, and Campylobacter infections of any age group in this country. The four food safety tips of Clean, Separate, Cook, and Chill must be followed in the kitchen. USDA recommends that before school starts, parents and kids try a food safety experiment to ensure that home-packed lunches are safe to eat. Pack the lunch and store it as they would at school. After the normal time between packing and lunch time has passed, test the temperature of the food. Cold items should be below 40°F and hot items should be above 140°F. Any foods in between those … [Read more...]

Botulism Outbreak in Western Alaska

Clostridium botulism

According to Alaska Dispatch News, state officials are investigating a botulism outbreak in Western Alaska. Two people have been sickened and one person died after eating a meal of fermented fish heads. The patients lived in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta. Samples of food are being tested, and samples from people who have been sick are being examined for the botulinum toxin. If the death is confirmed as from botulism poisoning, it will be the first death in that state from botulism since 2007. The person who died complained of seeing double and feeling sick after eating the fish. Botulism toxin is produced by the Clostridium botulinum bacteria. The bacteria grows in anaerobic (no oxygen) conditions, such as in canned low-acid foods. A tiny amount of the toxin is enough to kill a person. … [Read more...]

Cyclsospora Sickens Dozens in NY

Cyclospora outbreak in NY

Dozens of New Yorkers have contracted parasitic infections this summer from contaminated food. At least 29 cases of cyclospora infection have been reported in New York since June.  Nineteen of the cases were reported in the city, 10 throughout the rest of the state. Other states have also reported spikes in cases of cyclosporiasis, the infection caused by cyclospora, a rare parasite normally associated with travel to tropical regions. Since June, roughly 300 cases of cyclosporiasishave been reported from more than a dozen states including Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Montana, Nebraska, Ohio, Texas and Washington.  Health authorities have not yet identified a food source in any of the affected states, nor have they been able to … [Read more...]

Pet Lizards Sicken 166 With Rare Salmonella Strains

Salmonella Outbreak Bearded Dragons

A Salmonella outbreak linked to pet bearded dragons has ended after sickening 166 people in 36 states, according to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  At least 44 people were hospitalized. Bearded dragons are lizards native to Australia. Their unusual look and bright color have made them popular pets. The outbreak strains, Salmonella Cotham and Salmonella Kisarawe, are extremely rare. Since 1963,  just 0.01 percent of all human isolates in the U.S. have been Salmonella Cotham, according to the CDC. That works out to about 25 cases annually. Salmonella Kisarawe is also rarely reported. Salmonella can cause serious illnesses. Symptoms generally appear within six to 72 hours of exposure and can last up to a week. In this outbreak, onset of illness … [Read more...]

E. coli Sickens 122 in Alberta

E. coli Bacteria

At least 122 people in Alberta have contracted E.coli O157:H7, infections during the last month, according to the Canadian Press. There are 59 confirmed cases in Calgary, 48 in Edmonton, seven in the South,  six in the North and two the Central zone. Health authorities have not yet determined the source of the outbreak. Sprouts have been mentioned as possible source. Some of the case patients who were hospitalized earlier this month told investigators they ate fresh bean sprouts prior to becoming ill. E.coli can cause serious, sometimes life-threatening illness. Abdominal cramps and diarrhea that is sometimes bloody are the main symptoms. Anyone experiencing these symptoms should see a doctor. Canadian health officials remind consumers that ground beef should be cooked to an … [Read more...]

Peanut Butter Recall at Walmart, Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, Safeway and Kroger

peanut butter salmonella recall Whole Foods Trader Joe's Walmart

Peanut butter and almond butter recalled for possible Salmonella contamination was sold under a variety of band names at retail stores including Walmart, Whole Foods, Safeway, Kroger and Trader Joe's. Some of the brand names included in the recall are Arrowhead Mills, MaraNatMara, Kroger No Stir Creamy Almond Butter, Safeway Open Nature Almond Butter, Trader Joe's Crunchy Raw Almond Butter, Trader Joe's Creamy Raw Almond Butter, Whole Foods 365 Creamy Roasted Almond Butter, Whole Foods 365 Crunchy Roasted Almond Butter and Whole Foods 365 Organic Creamy Roasted Almond Butter. To see the full list of recalled products click here. The recalled nut butters were made by nSpired Natural Foods, Inc. and distributed throughout the United States, Canada, Hong Kong, United Arab Emirates, and the … [Read more...]

In Canada, Cole Slaw Recalled for Possible Listeria Monocytogenes

Belleisle Cole Slaw Listeria Recall

In Canada, the government and Roy Pope and Sons are recalling Belleisle Farms cole slaw for possible Listeria monocytogenes contamination. No illnesses have been reported in connection with the consumption of this product, but listeriosis, the illness caused by this bacteria, can take up to 70 days to manifest. The recalled product is Belleisle Farms Garden Fresh Cole Slaw in 227 gram containers. The UPC number is 0 33383 65260 3 and the code on the product is Best Before: 2014-08-19. It was sold at the retail level in New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island. If you purchased this product, discard it in a closed container or return to the place of purchase for a refund. Then clean out your refrigerator using a mild bleach solution. Listeria … [Read more...]

Trader Joe’s and MaraNatha Nut Butters Recalled in Canada Too

MaraNatha Almond Butter Salmonella Recall

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency is recalling MaraNatha and Trader Joe's brand almond butters and peanut butters for possible Salmonella contamination. There is a recall in the United States of some of these products; four people are ill in what may be an associated Salmonella outbreak. You can see the long list of recalled products at the CFIA web site, along with package sizes, UPC numbers, and codes and "best by" dates. The products are MaraNatha almond and peanut butters in various types, including raw and roasted, and Trader Joe's almond butter. You can also see pictures of all of the recalled product labels at that site. If you purchased any of these products, do not eat them. Discard in a double bag or return to the place of purchase for a refund. There have been no … [Read more...]

Corfinio Foods Products Recalled for Possible Botulism


The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services is warning consumers not to eat any canned soups or sauces made by Corfinio Foods of Richmond because they were improperly processed. That means they are susceptible to contamination with Clostridium botulinum. This bacteria produces a toxin that can cause illness and death. Corfinio Foods has suspended production of all of its canned soups and sauces, and the firm is working with officials to come into compliance with state requirements. There have been no reported illnesses to date associated with the consumption of these products. The soups and sauces are packaged in glass, mason style jars with metal screw on lids. They were sold at Brandermill Green Market. All of the products are marked with the Corfinio Foods label. … [Read more...]

Salmonella Peanut Butter, Almond Butter Recall, Illnesses Reported


Peanut Butter and almond butters are being recalled for potential Salmonella contamination. Four illnesses have beeb reported. nSpired Natural Foods Inc., made the nut butters which were sold under a variety of brand names including Arrowhead Mills Peanut Butters, MaraNatha Almond Butters,  Kroger, Safeway, Trader Joe's and Whole Foods  365. The products were distributed in the United States, Canada, Hong Kong, United Arab Emirates, and Dominican Republic. The were also sold over the internet. To view a complete list of recalled products click the link above. Salmonella can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, seniors and those with weakened immune systems. Healthy people who contract Salmonella infections have symptoms such as fever, diarrhea that can be … [Read more...]

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