June 4, 2023

FDA Releases More Info About Pandemic Food Shopping

The FDA releases more info about shopping for food during the coronavirus pandemic. Information about the virus keeps changing as scientists learn more about it. The first statement is, "We want to reassure consumers that there is currently no evidence of human or animal food or food packaging being associated with transmission of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19. This particular coronavirus causes respiratory illness and is spread from person-to-person, unlike foodborne gastrointestinal or GI viruses, such as norovirus and hepatitis A that often make people ill through contaminated food." FDA also says that although your local grocery store may be temporarily out of some products, there are no nationwide shortages of food since food production and manufacturing is spread … [Read more...]

Consumer Reports on How To Clean Reusable Bags To Avoid Illness

Reusable bags are getting more popular as many cities and state are restricting single use plastic and paper bags. There is no doubt that these bags are better for the environment. But they can pose another hazard: food poisoning. So Consumer Reports is publishing information on how to clean reusable bags to protect yourself against foodborne illness and coronavirus. Consumer Reports has offered information on how to shop for food and receive delivered food safety. But they have not addressed reusable bags until now. These bags can get pretty dirty, especially if they are used to transport raw meats, poultry, shellfish, and eggs. ¬†And most people don't even think about the possibility of getting sick from a bag. This is a classic case of cross-contamination potential. Your … [Read more...]

Smithfield Foods Closes Sioux Falls, SD Plant For COVID-19

Smithfield Foods is announcing that it is closing its plant in Sioux Falls, South Dakota indefinitely because it is a hot spot for COVID-19, otherwise known as coronavirus. Almost 300 of the plant's employees have tested positive for coronavirus. This one plant provides about 5% of the nation's pork supply. South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem sent a joint letter to the company along with Sioux Falls Mayor Paul TenHaken, asking that they "do more" about the pandemic and recommending that they shut down for 14 days. Sioux Falls has more coronavirus cases per capita than larger cities such as Chicago. While public health officials continue to reassure the public that the food supply in this country has not been reduced or harmed by the pandemic, Kenneth M. Sullivan, president and … [Read more...]

Yes, More Tips On Handwashing to Avoid Food Poisoning and Coronavirus

Yes, here are more tips on handwashing to avoid food poisoning and coronavirus. Everyone has been told over and over again to wash their hands thoroughly during food preparation and pretty much all the time to avoid coronavirus. Still, the USDA is offering more information about why hand washing is so important. We know that many food poisoning outbreaks have been linked to improper handwashing, especially when a cook or chef is working with raw meat and poultry. We also know that washing your hands thoroughly with soap and water will eliminate coronavirus. When you are washing your hands, first wet your hands with clean running water. Turn the faucet off and add soap. Lather your hands by rubbing them together. Make sure that you lather under your nails (scrub the nails into … [Read more...]

Meat Processing Facilities Close As Workers Get Sick With COVID-19

This news isn't going to help with the hoarding problem in this country because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but several meat processing facilities close around the country as their workers start getting sick with coronavirus, according to NPR. Food workers are categorized as essential workers during the pandemic. Tyson Foods has suspended operations at its pork plant in Columbus Junction, Iowa. National Beef Packing, also located in Iowa, stopped production as well. And JBS USA temporarily closed a beef processing plant in Pennsylvania. JBS USA also confirmed the death of one employee at a facility in Colorado. Three employees at the Tyson Foods poultry plant in Camilla, Georgia have died of COVID-19, according to the New York Times. Because of these illnesses and deaths, it's … [Read more...]

FDA Warns Maker of Chlorine Dioxide Products Used for COVID-19

The FDA has issued a warning letter to Genesis II Church of Health and Healing that markets fraudulent and dangerous chlorine dioxide products for the prevention and treatment of COVID-19. The company makes a product called "Miracle Mineral Solution." The FDA has warned consumers not to purchase or drink chlorine dioxide products that are sold as medical treatments online. There is no scientific evidence supporting this compound's safety or effectiveness. These products also pose significant risks to patient health. FDA Commissioner Dr. Stephen M. Hahn said in a statement, "Despite previous warnings, the FDA is concerned that we are still seeing chlorine dioxide products being sold with misleading claims that they are safe and effective for the treatment of diseases, now including … [Read more...]

Many Coronavirus Patients Have Gastrointestinal Symptoms

Scientists and doctors are learning more about coronavirus every day. Advice about diagnosing and preventing this illness has been changing too. At first researchers thought the virus didn't spread very far in the air; now they think it can travel up to 27 feet in a cough or sneeze. Now they are finding that many coronavirus patients have gastrointestinal symptoms similar to food poisoning. A study of 206 COVID-19 positive patients in China were studied last month. The results showed that doctors should be looking for GI symptoms as well as respiratory symptoms. Of those 206 patients, 46% had digestive symptoms, including loss of appetite (83.8%), diarrhea (29.3%), vomiting (8.1)% and abdominal pain (4%). Many patients also reported loss of the sense of smell (anosmia) and taste … [Read more...]

Consumer Reports On If There Is a Link Between Coronavirus and Food

Consumer Reports has asked experts on food safety about any link between coronavirus and food. There is currently no evidence that it is transmitted via food, accord to Dr. Donald Schaffner, a distinguished professor in the department of food science at Rutgers University. Authorities in this field agree. The CDC, FDA, Department of Agriculture, and the World Health Organization all say that food is not a known source of transmission. Still, everyone needs to practice good food safety habits: Wash your hands thoroughly when working with food. Prevent cross-contamination. Clean utensils and surfaces as you work. Cook food to safe final internal temperatures. And refrigerate leftovers promptly. You really don't want to get a foodborne illness now, when hospitals are nearing … [Read more...]

FDA Tips About Safely Using Hand Sanitizer In the Coronavirus Pandemic

While most of us know by now that the coronavirus is destroyed with soap, since its outer layer is fat which soap destroys, we also know that hand sanitizers are a good second choice if you can't get to a sink. The FDA has tips for safely using hand sanitizer. It's so important to always wash your hands after you use the bathroom, before preparing food or eating, and also after coughing, sneezing, or blowing your nose. If you don't have access to soap and running water, hand sanitizers are a good second choice. The alcohol-based sanitizers recommended must have at least 60% alcohol. The best way to use hand sanitizer is by rubbing it all over your hands. Make sure that you get between your fingers and on the back of your hands. Don't wipe off or rinse your hands before the … [Read more...]

Protect Yourself Against Coronavirus When Food Shopping

Everyone is worried about coronavirus and wants to know how to protect themselves and their family. We all know about social distancing and washing our hands frequently. Food Poisoning Bulletin has also told you how to protect yourself when receiving packages and food deliveries at home. But how do you protect yourself against coronavirus when food shopping? Consumer Reports has some answers. First, be aware that many grocery store chains and restaurants are offering delivery options and curbside pickup, which helps limit your exposure to others at this time. If you are picking things up, open the car door yourself. It's best to avoid a direct hand-off; instruct the delivery person to put the groceries at your door or in your car. But if you have to go into a store to get food, … [Read more...]

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