May 31, 2016

FDA Issues Final Food Defense Regulation

The FDA released the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) final rule for mitigation strategies to protect food against intentional adulteration last week. This rule is intended to prevent public harm by requiring companies in the U.S. and abroad to take steps to prevent adulteration of the food supply. These facilities are required to complete and maintain a written food defense plan that assesses their potential vulnerabilities to deliberate contamination. They must also establish food defense monitoring procedures and corrective actions, verify that the system is working, and ensure that personnel assigned to these areas receive training and maintain records. Before 1982, most food and drug products did not have tamper-proof packaging or tamper-resistant seals. In 1982, seven … [Read more...]

Whole Foods Recalls Kimchi For Undeclared Allergens

Whole Foods Market is issuing an advisory to consumers who bought some Kimchi products from their 365 by Whole Foods Market store in Silver Lake, California, because they contain fish, shellfish, and pine nuts that were not declared on the label. Anyone who is allergic to those ingredients could have a serious reaction if they eat these products. No illnesses have been reported to date. The recalled items were for sale between May 25 and May 27, 2016. They include Spicy Kimchi offered at the salad bar for undeclared fish/shellfish; Kimchi Fried Rice offered on the hot food bar for undeclared tree nuts, and White Kimchi offered at the salad bar for undeclared tree nuts. Also recalled is Kimchi Guacamole offered in one-pound pre-packaged clear plastic containers with lids, with item … [Read more...]

Three CA Children Sickened with E. coli After Fairfax Creek Visit

According to the Marin Independent Journal, two children, and possibly three, have been sickened with E. coli infections that may be associated with a creek in the Fairfax area. The children are very young, all about two or three years old. They were playing in the creek in Peri Park in downtown Fairfax. But Marin County officials have not confirmed that water contamination is the source of their illnesses. Water samples were taken from the creek and will be tested. One of the children became ill on May 8, the second on May 15, and the third on May 21, 2016. It is possible that the infections came from another place. One of the children ate raw cream before getting sick, and another recently ate at a local restaurant. The sanitary district has not reported any sewage spills in … [Read more...]

Oceana Asks for Turtle Excluder Devices for Wild Caught Shrimp

Oceana is calling on the Obama administration to require the use of improved Turtle Excluder Devices (TEDs) to save sea turtles and reduce wasted seafood. These devices are metal grates inserted into shrimp nets that allow the turtles and other wildlife to escape. Many shrimp boats in the Southwest have been forced to use TEDs since the 1980s, but more than 2,000 skimmer trawls are exempt. Those trawls could be killing 50,000 endangered and threatened sea turtles every year. In 2013, shrimp trawl fisheries in the Gulf of Mexico threw away 62% of its total catch of ocean wildlife that were caught in the nets. Lora Snyder, campaign director at Oceana, said in a statement "protecting sea turtles and U.S. fishing interests do not have to be mutually exclusive. Requiring TEDs in all … [Read more...]

Iowa Select Herbs Recalls Dietary Supplements

In the FDA's Weekly Enforcement Report for the week ending May 11, 2016, Iowa Select Herbs recalled dietary supplements for misbranding, unapproved new drugs, and adulterated dietary supplements. The products were ordered recalled by the FDA because a consent decree for injunctive relief was declared. These products were distributed to retail stores in California, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Michigan, Missouri, Montana, New York, and South Carolina, and to consumers nationwide and internationally in Denmark, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, and Serbia. The recalled products include Acerola Berry (Malpighia) in 4 fluid ounce containers, with lot number 32796 and expiration date 04/2019. Also recalled is Acia Berry (Euterpe oleracea) in 4 ounce containers with lot number 22345 and … [Read more...]

Catfish Inspection Program Nullified by the U.S. Senate

Last November, the USDA released its final rule on catfish inspection. The rule became effective in March 2016. But last week, the U.S. Senate voted to shut the program down by passing a resolution of Congressional disapproval and nullification. The program had been finding antibiotics and carcinogens from Siluriformes fish imported from Asia. Catfish used to be inspected by the FDA, but the inspection process was transferred to USDA in the 2008 Farm Bill. USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service inspectors would conduct inspections during all hours of operation at domestic facilities that slaughter and processes these fish, similar to the inspections they conduct at poultry and meat slaughter facilities. In 2011, the FDA tested less than 0.1% of all imported seafood for drug … [Read more...]

Avoid Blue-Green Algae in Lakes and Ponds

The Minnesota Department of Health is warning people to avoid blue-green algae in lakes, streams, and ponds. This algae can cause illness to humans and has killed many dogs. Blue-green algal blooms were reported in lakes across the state last summer. Two people got sick, and many dogs died after exposure to the algae. These blooms usually start in June, but spring has been warm this year, so the growth may have already begun. Blue-green algae usually has an unpleasant smell and most people avoid it. But people can become ill after they swim, boat, water ski, or bathe in water that has this toxic algae. Swallowing the algae, or having skin contact with the water can cause illness. In addition, breathing in tiny droplets of water in the air can make you sick. The symptoms of … [Read more...]

Food Recall Roundup For Week of May 29, 2016

The recalls of frozen vegetable products and sunflower seed products for possible Listeria monocytogenes contamination finally slowed down the week ending May 29, 2016. But there were still four recalls for the sunflower seed products. All of these recalls are listed in reverse chronological order. The Recalls Tommee Tippee Sippee Cups were recalled for mold on May 27, 2016. That recall had 68 illnesses associated with it. Burger's Ozark Country Cured recalled pulled pork products for an incorrect label on May 27, 2016. Sweet Earth Natural Foods recalled Big Sur Burritos for undeclared milk on May 27, 2016. Sid Wainer and Sons recalled tart shells for undeclared eggs and coconut on May 27, 2016. Taylor Farms Florida recalled Wawa Thai style chicken mango salad for … [Read more...]

Nanoparticles Found in Baby Formula

According to Friends of the Earth, infant formulas sold in the United States contain nanoparticles, which are very small compounds. Research shows that these nanoparticles may pose threats to human health. Friends of the Earth commissioned independent lab analysis that found these particles in six infant formulas that were tested. These nanoparticles are not indicated on the label and they are not regulated by the FDA. The FDA is supposed to regulate baby formulas and making sure they are safe, but the government does not approve the safety of infant formulas before they are marketed.. They only require that the formulas meet nutritional requirements and are screened for pathogens. The rules don't include screening for potentially toxic synthetic ingredients. The products that … [Read more...]

Burger’s Smokehouse Recalls Pulled Pork for Incorrect Label

Burger's Ozark Country Cured of Missouri is recalling about 150 pounds of pulled pork products for misbranding. The items were packaged with the incorrect label. The right label is on the front, but a label for a beef brisket product is on the back. The product is Burger's Smokehouse Signature Sauce Seasoned Pulled Pork with Barbecue Sauce in 1 pound microwaveable tray packages. The product was produced and packaged on January 26, 2016. It has the establishment number "EST. 1161" inside the USDA mark of inspection. The case code is P816W with a use by/freeze by date of August 13, 2016. They were shipped to retail locations in Missouri. If you purchased this product, you can return it to the store where you bought it for a refund. The problem was discovered through a customer who … [Read more...]

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