September 24, 2021

Two Cyclospora Outbreaks Continue To Grow With No Source Named

Two cyclospora outbreaks continue to grow with no source named, according to the FDA's Core Outbreak Investigation Table. The first outbreak has increased by three cases to 38 sick, and the second has increased by one case to 127. And there is no information about the possible source of these illnesses. These two clusters are a subset of the total number of domestically-acquired cyclospsoriaiss cases in the United States at this time. At least 864 people in this country have been sickened by this parasite since May 2021. The case count of the overall numbers has increased by 402 since the last CDC update on July 29 ,2021. Traceback and site inspections have occurred for the larger outbreak, but the FDA is not releasing any information about these investigations unless they think … [Read more...]

FDA Warns Consumers Against Consuming Nitrite Poppers

The FDA is warning consumers against the intentional ingestion or inhalation of nitrite poppers. Health care providers are reporting increases in deaths and hospitalizations related to the use of these items. These products contain chemical substances similar to the prescription medication, amyl nitrite, that is routinely prescribed for the relief of chest pain. These poppers have not been evaluated by the FDA for safe use. They are not safe to ingest or inhale. Poppers are packaged in small bottles and look similar to energy shot beverage products. They are sold online, in adult novelty stores, and at other locations and are marketed as air fresheners, liquid incense, deodorizers, leather cleaners, cosmetics, solvents, and nail polish removers. Judy McMeekin, Pharm. D., … [Read more...]

One of Two Cyclospora Outbreaks Increases Again to at Least 126 Sick

With little information, one of the two cyclospora outbreaks had increased again to at least 126 sick, adding seven more patients in just one day according to the FDA's Outbreak Investigation Table.. And while traceback has begun, at least one on-site inspection launched, samples collected, and analysis initiated, the public still does not know what food has caused this outbreak. Most of these outbreaks are caused by contaminated produce. Previous cyclospora outbreaks have been linked to fresh basil, bagged salads, mesclun lettuce, cilantro, raspberries, and Del Monte vegetable trays. Unfortunately, sometimes a source is never identified. The cyclospora parasite undergoes a very specific life cycle that makes it infectious. The oocysts are deposited on produce through feces, as … [Read more...]

How to Recover Food After Flooding From Hurricane Ida

Hurricane Ida has made landfall in Louisiana and catastrophic flooding has affected thousands. After a flood, there are things you can do to recover food after flooding, according to the FDA. Please note that only food that is packaged in completely waterproof containers is salvageable. For water, boiling and disinfecting with bleach will cost most, but not all, disease-causing pathogens. First, filter water through clean cloths, or let it settle and draw off the lear water. Boil the water for one minute, let it cool, and store in clean containers. Or add 1/8 teaspoon (8 drops) of unscented liquid chlorine bleach per gallon of water. Stir it and let stand for at least 30 minutes before you use it. Food containers that are waterproof including undamaged, commercially prepared … [Read more...]

Felix Custom Smoking Seafood Products Under FDA Public Health Alert

Felix Custom Smoking Seafood products are under an FDA public health alert for possible Listeria monocytogenes contamination. The FDA found the pathogen Listeria monocytogenes and other strains of Listeria during an inspection at Felix Custom Smoking that began on July 19, 2021 and is still ongoing. The FDA notified Felix of its findings, but the company has declined to issue a recall and is still processing seafood. There is zero tolerance for Listeria monocytogenes in ready to eat products. So the FDA is alerting consumers, companies, and fishermen who may have received product from Felix because the agency is concerned about the presence of the pathogen at the firm and the safety of its products. The FDA is continuing its efforts with Felix and its customers to remove those … [Read more...]

Two Cyclospora Outbreaks Continue to Grow, Sickening 153

Two cyclospora outbreaks in the United States continue to grow, sickening at least 153 people, according to the FDA's CORE Investigation Outbreak Table. Both investigations are active, but the government has not released any information about the outbreaks, including possible source, patient age range, illness onset dates, or if anyone has been hospitalized. That's the nature of that table. Unless the FDA thinks that there is some action that consumers can take to protect themselves, they will not release more information. All consumers can do is pay attention to recalls and follow food safety rules in the kitchen. For cyclospora, the most important thing is to make sure that you thoroughly rinse and dry all produce before you eat it or prepare it. Although, cyclospora oocysts … [Read more...]

Are You Ready For a Hurricane? Get Tips From the FDA

Are you ready for a hurricane? With the news of Tropical Depression Fred wreaking havoc on the east coast, and Tropical Storm Henri on the horizon, now is the time to prepare if you live in a hurricane zone. These tips apply across the country in any type of severe weather. The FDA has great tips and information you need to know. These storms can cut off water supplies and threaten the food supply. Before a storm, make sure you have thermometers in your refrigerator and freezer, and stock up on coolers, frozen gel packs, and dry ice to keep reefrigerated food at or below 40°F and frozen food at or below 0°F if you lose power. And stock up on bottled water and nonperishable food and put it as high up on shelves as you can in case of floods. Also make sure you have a manual can opener … [Read more...]

New Cyclospora Outbreak Sickens 29; Ongoing Outbreak Sickens 104

According to the FDA's Core Outbreak Investigation Table, a new cyclospora outbreak has been identified, in addition to the outbreak that has been on the table for weeks. In the new outbreak, 29 people are sick. In the ongoing outbreak, at least 104 people are now sick. No food has been identified in either outbreak. Every year since 2013, hundreds of Americans are sickened with cyclospora outbreaks in the summer and this year is no exception. The CDC says that there are currently at least 462 people sick with domestically-acquired cyclospora infections in this country; 41 people have been hospitalized. The FDA outbreaks are part of that total, since on the table each outbreak has an asterisk that states "This cluster represents a subset of the total number of domestically-acquired … [Read more...]

Cyclospora Outbreak Grows to 62 Sick; No Food Identified Yet

On the FDA's Core Outbreak Investigation Table, the cyclospora outbreak grows to 62 sick, with no food identified yet. Traceback has been initiated, and samples are being tested, but no outbreak investigation information has been released by the FDA or the CDC. Those 62 patients are only a subsection of the total number of cyclospora illnesses in the country this summer. Every year since 2013, there have been large Cyclospora outbreaks in the United States. This illness used to be limited to tropical regions, with the only U.S. cases among those who traveled to those areas of the globe. But now the parasite is contaminating food imported from other countries and food grown in this country. There is currently one recall of produce for possible cyclospora contamination: Dole … [Read more...]

FDA Releases Cyclospora Prevention Response and Research Action Plan

The FDA has released its Cyclospora Prevention Response and Action Plan, developed after 6,000 Americans were sickened with cyclosporiasis in the last three years. Cyclosporiasis is caused by the microscopic parasite Cyclospora cayetanensis. The number of reported cases has been rising in this country over the past few years, due in part to better diagnostic testing methods.These outbreaks are always linked to fresh produce that the consumer does not heat or cook before serving, so the parasite survives from farm to table. These outbreaks typically occur in the spring and summer months, from May through August. In 2020, a Cyclospora outbreak linked to Fresh Express bagged salads sickened more than 700 people in 14 states. In 2019, there were six outbreaks: An outbreak that was … [Read more...]

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