January 9, 2021

FDA Says Some Weight Loss, Other Supplements May Be Dangerous

The FDA has released a consumer update stating that weight loss products and other supplements, including male enhancement products, that are sold online or in stores may be dangerous because they may be illegal. Some of these dietary supplements can be made with potentially dangerous ingredients that are not listed on the label. Over the past 10 years, the FDA has waned consumers that some products that are sold over the counter contain active hidden ingredients. This is especially the case for products that are marketed for weight loss, pain relief, body building, sleep aids, and male enhancement. Some of these products are actually drugs and are falsely represented as being dietary supplements. FDA has also found products that are marketed as supplements that claim to treat or … [Read more...]

Deli Meat Listeria Outbreak is Number Ten in Top Outbreaks of 2020

During this strange, pandemic-plagued year, there were exactly ten multistate food poisoning outbreaks to fill out our end of the year Top 10 list. Four of the outbreaks are still going on, and three are not linked to any particular food source yet. The Number 10 food poisoning outbreak for 2020 is the ongoing deli meat Listeria monocytogenes outbreak. This outbreak has sickened 11 people in 3 states. The case count by state is: Florida (1), Massachusetts (7), and New York (3). One person who lived in Florida has sadly died. The patient age range is from 4o to 89 years. All of those sickened have been hospitalized. Officials say that deli meat is the likely source of this outbreak, since all ten people interviewed for the investigation said they ate Italian-style deli meats, such … [Read more...]

Cozy Vale Raw Milk Recalled For Possible E. coli Contamination

Cozy Vale raw milk is being recalled for possible E. coli contamination, according to a piece in The Olympian. That same dairy also recalled raw milk for possible E. coli contamination in 2017. The Cozy Vale Creamery is located in Tenino, Washington. The company is not aware of any illnesses associated with these recalled products. The voluntary recall is for gallon, half-gallon, quart, and pint containers of raw, or unpasteurized, milk that were sold in retail stores in Western Washington state. The recalled products have best by dates of December 12 to December 23, 2020. The pathogen was found in routine sampling of retail raw cream conducted by the Washington State Department of Agriculture. Tests did not find the bacteria in skim and whole raw milk products, but all of these … [Read more...]

FSIS Foodborne Illness Outbreaks For Fiscal Year 2019

The USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) has released its summary of FSIS foodborne illness outbreaks for fiscal year 2019 that involved FSIS-regulated products. The four pathogens that most often affect those products are Salmonella, Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC), Listeria monocytogenes, and Campylobacter. During fiscal year 2019, FSIS investigated 16 outbreaks that sickened about 1000 people and hospitalized more than 175 patients. 94% of these outbreaks involved illnesses in more than one state. Salmonella was the most common pathogen in these outbreaks, followed by STEC, and Listeria monocytogenes. Beef and chicken were the most common food products of interest. Salmonella serotypes in these outbreaks included Blockley, Enteritidis, Newport, Rissen, and … [Read more...]

Raw Oyster Vibrio Outbreak in Canada Ends With 23 Sick

A raw oyster Vibrio outbreak in Canada has ended with 23 sick, according to Public Health Canada. One person was hospitalized because their illness was so severe. Vibrio parahaemolyticus is a naturally occurring bacteria that grows in coastal waters when the water is warm, as in the summer months. Most people get sick by eating raw or undercooked shellfish, especially oysters, in the summer. The case count by province is: Saskatchewan (1), Quebec (7), New Brunswick (10), and Prince Edward Island (5). People got sick between early July and late October 2020. The patient age range is from 11 to 92 years. This infection can be spread person-to-person, especially since some people can be infected and not exhibit any symptoms. People who are at most risk for complications from this … [Read more...]

Deadly Listeria Monocytogenes Deli Meat Outbreak Updated

The deadly Listeria monocytogenes deli meat outbreak has grown to include one more patient, according to an update by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). One death has sadly been reported from Florida. The last update about this outbreak was posted on October 23, 2020. The patient case count by state is: Florida (1), Massachusetts (7), and New York (3). The newly diagnosed patient lives in New York. The patient age range is from 40 t0 89 years. And the illness onset dates range from August 6, 2020 to October 30, 2020. Epidemiologic evidence indicates that deli meat is a likely source of this outback. No specific type of deli meat, any store, or a common supplier has been linked to these illnesses yet. Public health officials interviewed 10 ill patients about … [Read more...]

Salmonella Outbreak Linked to Pet Hedgehogs in Canada Sickens 32

A Salmonella outbreak linked to pet hedgehogs in Canada has sickened at least 32 people, according to Public Health Canada. Many of those sickened had direct or indirect contact with hedgehogs before they got sick. People purchased hedgehogs from various sources, including breeders, pet stores, and sellers advertising online. The government is investigating to see if there is a common source of these contaminated hedgehogs. Hedgehogs can carry Salmonella bacteria even though they look healthy and show no signs of illness. People can get sick by touching the hedgehogs and even by coming into contact with the environment the hedgehogs live in. As of December 1, 2020, there are 32 confirmed cases of Salmonella Typhimurium in six provinces. The case count by province is: British … [Read more...]

NC Harris Teeter AFC Sushi Linked to Food Poisoning Outbreak in Concord

North Carolina Harris Teeter AFC sushi is linked to a food poisoning outbreak, according to a press release issued by the Cabarrus Health Alliance (CHA) in Concord, North Carolina. The Harris Teeter stores in question are located at 358 George W. Liles Parkway Northwest in Concord, and 1245 Concord Parkway North, also in Concord, North Carolina. When the press release was first issued four days ago, there were "more than 10 individuals" who were sick. But according to news reports, now as many as 128 people may be ill. Those 128 people belong to 85 households. Harris Teeter is using their loyalty card program to notify 429 households that they purchased that during during the timeframe in question. More than 100 transactions were made without a loyalty card, however. The sushi … [Read more...]

CDC Updates Second Mystery E. coli O157:H7 Outbreak; Romaine?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has updated the second mystery E. coli O157:H7 outbreak that may be associated with leafy greens or romaine lettuce. This outbreak has now sickened at least 39 people in 18 states. There are three unsolved multistate E. coli O157:H7 outbreaks ongoing at this time; all of the investigation notices mention leafy greens, and one mentions an unnamed restaurant. The outbreak investigation notice states that "This outbreak is different from the two other E. coli O157:H7 outbreaks CDC is currently investigating." This is the same strain of E. coli O157:H7 which caused a massive outbreak last year that was linked to romaine lettuce from the Salinas Valley growing region in California. At least 167 people were sickened in that outbreak … [Read more...]

Canada E. coli Romaine Lettuce Update – Import Restrictions are Working

Every year since 2017, there has been at least oneĀ E. coli O157:H7 outbreak linked to romaine lettuce or leafy greens in the United States and in Canada. While no such outbreak has been officially announced in the United States yet in 2020, there have been three "mystery" E. coli O157:H7 outbreaks announced by the CDC and FDA this fall that may be associated with romaine. No such outbreaks have occurred in Canada this year. Why? It may be because last month the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) imposed import restrictions on romaine lettuce grown in the United States. The romaine that allegedly caused illnesses in Canada mostly came from the Salinas growing region in California. So romaine importers either had to prove to the Canadian government that the lettuce did not … [Read more...]

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