October 21, 2014

FDA Research Focuses on Identifying Pathogens Faster

FDA

The FDA is researching new ways to identify pathogens in food more quickly. A team at the FDA's San Juan Laboratory has received seed funding through a Health and Human Services HHSignite award to "adapt traditional chemistry methods for the detection of foodborne pathogens." The research is focusing on Capillary Electrophoresis coupled with a Mass Spectrometer, called CE-MS, that will identify pathogens through specific proteins by fragmentation pathogens. This will identify foot prints for pathogenic bacteria such as E. coli, Salmonella, Listeria, and Staphylococcus. Researchers hope this will help create faster screening methods so investigators can identify bacteria in an outbreak much more quickly. CE-MS is also used as a way to discover biomarkers for diseases from tissues and … [Read more...]

According to FDA, Chobani Yogurt May Have Sickened 89

Chobani-yogurt

The Food and Drug Administration has said that at least 89 people got sick after reportedly eating recalled Chobani yogurt products. The yogurt was apparently contaminated with Mucor circinelloides, a type of mold that causes spoilage in dairy products. The mold isn't a disease-causing organism, but it can sicken those with compromised immune systems. The illnesses have not been definitively linked to the yogurt. The recall was first initiated because the containers were bloating and swelling, and the yogurt was thinner than usual and was fizzing and making a hissing sound. Some consumers reported a bad taste as well, and some yogurt containers exploded in the refrigerator. The illnesses reported nausea and cramps, according to Tamara Ward, who spoke to a reporter at the Times-News … [Read more...]

T.A. Restaurant in Fall River, Massachusetts Closed After Salmonella Outbreak

Restaurant Food Poisoning

According to the Herald News, T.A. Restaurant in Fall River has closed after an apparent Salmonella outbreak.  At least one person has been sickened, and officials expect more cases will be identified. An investigation by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health Food Protection Program is ongoing. The owners are cooperating with state and city government officials and hope to reopen the restaurant soon. Public health officials inspected the restaurant last Friday. Complaints about the restaurant were received last week. The Portuguese restaurant must disinfect the restaurant and the kitchen, replace some equipment, and throw out old food. Staff members must take lab culture tests and receive two negative tests before they are allowed to return to work. Salmonella infections … [Read more...]

Winn Dixie Stores Sold Farm Rich Products Recalled for E. coli O121

Farm Rich microwave Mozzarella Bites recalled for E. coli 0121 contamination

Winn Dixie stores in south Florida sold the Farm Rich products that have been recalled for E. coli O121. In addition, Walmart stores nationwide carried the product. The frozen snacks and mini meals are linked to an E. coli 0121 outbreak that has sickened at least 24 people in 15 states. Forty-seven stores in Michigan also carried the recalled products. You can see the complete list of stores, with their street address and city, at the USDA web site. Scroll down to pages 2 and 3 to see the lists. The stores include some Family Fare stores, Village Market Food Center, Harding's Market, VG's Grocery, Heartland Marketplace, Glory Supermarket, Shop-Rite, and Vinickier Foods, among others. If you purchased any of these products, return them to the place of purchase for a refund. Do not eat … [Read more...]

E. coli 0121 Outbreak Linked to Farm Rich Products Sold at Walmart

Nationwide Farm Rich E. coli 0121 Outbreak Map

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has announced an E. coli 0121 outbreak linked to Farm Rich brand frozen food products. So far, 24 people in 15 states have been sickened in this outbreak. Rich Products Corporation recalled about 196,222 pounds of frozen chicken quesadillas and several other frozen mini meals and snack items because they may be contaminated with the Shiga-toxin producing bacteria. So far, the case count is as follows: Alabama (1), Arkansas (1), Illinois (1), Indiana (2), Michigan (2), Mississippi (1), New York (3), Ohio (3), Pennsylvania (1), South Dakota (1), Texas (3), Utah (1), Virginia (1), Washington (1), and Wisconsin (2). Information indicates that consumption of Farm Rich brand frozen products is one likely source of infection for the … [Read more...]

Farm Rich Products Recalled For Possible E. coli O121

Farm Rich Pizza Slices E. coli 0121

Rich Products Corporation of New York is recalling about 196,222 pounds of frozen chicken quesadillas and various other heat treated, not fully cooked frozen mini meals and snack items because they may be contaminated with E. coli O121. A multistate outbreak of E. coli O121 may be associated with these products, which were sold at Walmart. The New York State Department of Health Wadsworth Laboratory found the outbreak strain of the bacteria in a Farm Rich frozen chicken mini quesadilla product obtained from a case patient. These products are recalled: 7.2 ounce cartons of Farm Rich mini pizza slices with cheese pepperoni and sauce in pizza dough with UPC number 041322376909 and best by date of May 15 or May 16, 2014. Farm Rich mini pizza slices with cheese pepperoni and sauce in … [Read more...]

Reports of Foodborne Illness Decline by 40%

SBareillyoutbreak4.20.12

The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) has released a new review of foodborne illness outbreaks. They found that from 2001 to 2010, the latest period for which data is available, outbreaks related to E. coli, Salmonella, and other pathogens decreased by more than 40%. This may be because of better food safety practices, including the adoption of Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) programs in the meat, poultry, and seafood industries, as specified by the government. But the agency warns that incomplete reporting by public health agencies stretched and overworked by budget cuts may have influenced the data. CSPI food safety director Caroline Smith DeWaal said, "despite progress made by the industry and by food safety regulators, contaminated food is still … [Read more...]

Canadian E. coli Outbreak Associated with Lettuce Reaches 30 Patients

E. coli HUS

The Canadian Public Health Agency states that there are now 30 people ill in the E. coli 0157:H7 outbreak associated with shredded lettuce distributed by FreshPoint Inc. The lettuce was sold primarily to KFC and KFC-Taco Bell restaurants and was not distributed to grocery stores. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has traced the lettuce to its origin in California and notified U.S. authorities. Since early January 2013, there has been an investigation into these illnesses. So far, 7 people are sick in New Brunswick, 10 in Nova Scotia, and 13 in Ontario. The symptoms of an E. coli 0157:H7 infection include severe stomach cramps, diarrhea, which is often watery and may be bloody, vomiting, and a mild fever. About 5 to 10% of those who are sickened will develop hemolytic uremic … [Read more...]

Glenn’s Market Recalls Ground Beef; E. coli Outbreak in Wisconsin

Ground Beef

Glenn's Market and Catering in Watertown Wisconsin is recalling 2,532 pounds of raw ground beef products that may be contaminated with E. coli 0157:H7. The products were sold only at that particular store from the retail meat case. The recalled meat is various size packages of Glenn's Market ground round, ground chuck, and ground beef sold between December 22, 2012 and January 4, 2013. There is a cluster of E. coli 0157:H7 illnesses announced by the Wisconsin Division of Public Health on January 10, 2013. Three patients with the outbreak strain have been identified. The beef was purchased on December 24, 2012 and on December 30, 2012. Illness onset dates ranged from January 29, 2012 to January 1, 2013. All three consumed raw ground round purchased from Glenn's Market. Public health … [Read more...]

Missouri Issues Alert About Raw Milk and E. coli Outbreak

Milk-splash-B

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services is issuing a health advisory about consumption of locally produced, raw dairy products that may be contaminated with E. coli O103. This bacteria is Shiga-toxin producing Escherichia coli (STEC) that can cause serious illness and death. Several cases of the illness in northwest Missouri have been reported to public health authorities, including one confirmed case of  E. coli O103. Anyone who has the symptoms of a STEC infection, including severe stomach cramps, diarrhea, which may be watery and/or bloody, and vomiting, should see a doctor immediately. Most people get better within a week, but some can develop hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), which can cause kidney failure and death. This is a reportable illness, so all health … [Read more...]

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