August 11, 2020

Salmonella Uses Lettuce As a Host to Evade Cleaning

A study published in Frontiers in Microbiology has found that Salmonella uses lettuce as a host to evade cleaning. The pathogen can get into tiny pores in the lettuce, meaning that it can't be washed off the leaves. This strategy also protects them agains the plant's immune system. Lettuce leaves have tiny pores called stomates that let the plants cool off. The type of Salmonella that sickens people can get into the plants through the stomates  just like fungi and plant bacteria can. This jumping between different kingdoms concerns scientists. The research team, based at the Department of Plant and Soil Sciences, the Delaware Biotechnology Institute, and the Department of Animal and Food Sciences at the University of Delaware, wanted to determine if Salmonella Typhimurium applied … [Read more...]

Carnivora Fresh Frozen Patties Recalled For E. coli O157 in Canada

Carnivora fresh frozen patties recalled for E. coli contamination in Canada. There is an outbreak linked to some of these recalled pet food products that has sickened four people as of June 12, 2020. There is a risk that pets fed this food could get sick or become healthy carriers and could pass the illness on to humans. There is also a risk of cross-contamination between the food and objects in the home. About 1,803 units of the affected product were sold in Canada from January 13, 2020 to June, 2020. The recalled products are all Carnivora brand. They include Whole Animal Chicken Dinner with Vegetables 'n' Fruit, Ultra Premium Fresh Frozen Patties for Dogs & Cats, sold in 4 pound (1820 gram) bags. The UPC number on the product is 689076622271, and the date codes are 13 01 … [Read more...]

E. coli O157 Outbreak Linked to Carnivora Raw Pet Food in Canada

An E. coli O157 outbreak linked to Carnivora raw pet food in Canada has sickened four people in three provinces as of June 12, 2020. The outbreak is ongoing, as more illnesses continue to be reported to Public Health Agency of Canada. This is not the first time human illnesses have been linked to raw frozen pet food. Exposure to Carnivora brand frozen raw pet food has been identified as the likely source of the outbreak. All of the ill persons said they were exposed to Carnivora brand frozen raw pet food or to dogs who have been fed this product, before they got sick. The patient case count by province is: British Columbia (1), Alberta (2), and Manitoba (1). Illness onset dates range from early March and mid-May 2020. Two of the patients have been hospitalized. And the patient … [Read more...]

Ground Beef Sickens One in Illinois; non-O157 E. coli Found in Meat

Ground beef sickens one in Macoupin County, Illinois, according to a press release from the Illinois Department of Agriculture. A public health alert has been issued for ground beef sold at David B’s Custom Meats in Carlinville, Illinois. While officials found non-O157 E. coli bacteria in the meat, they did not state that the ill person is sick with any type of E. coli infection. The ground beef was prepared at that Type II facility, which is custom exempt, at the beginning of 2020 to the current date. Custom exempt meat products are not inspected and cannot be offered for sale to the public. So a recall of the ground beef was not requested. Instead, the DOH is issuing a public health alert about the problem. A resident of Macoupin County notified local public health officials … [Read more...]

Chipotle Mexican Grill Pays $25 Million In Criminal Charges After Outbreak

Chipotle Mexican Grill is paying a $25 million fine in criminal charges related to the company's involvement in foodborne illness outbreaks that sickened more than 1000 people between 2015 and 2018. The U.S. Department of Justice announced this news in a press release. Chipotle was charged with adulterating food in violation of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act. The company agreed to a three-year deferred prosecution agreement that will let it avoid conviction if it complies with an improved food safety program. The $25 million criminal fine is the largest ever in a food safety case. Assistant Attorney General Jody Hunt of the Department of Justice’s Civil Division said in a statement, "This case highlights why it is important for restaurants and members of the food … [Read more...]

What You Need to Know About Raw Sprouts and Food Poisoning

Raw sprouts have been considered a health food for decades. They are crunchy and delicious and full of nutrients. The sprouting process increases the availability of protein, folate, magnesium, phosphorus, manganese and vitamins C and K than unsprouted seeds. Unfortunately, the sprouting process also links raw sprouts and food poisoning. There have been many Salmonella and E. coli outbreaks linked to raw sprouts in the past few years. These outbreaks have been so numerous that a term was coined about them: sproutbreaks. The problem is that the seeds are inherently risky. The bacteria can be encapsulated in the seed itself, so cleaning the seeds before sprouting is completely ineffective. Then, when the seeds are sprouted in warm, moist conditions, those bacteria can grow and … [Read more...]

Restaurant Unpaid Sick Leave Policies Changing With Coronavirus Pandemic

The coronavirus outbreak, which has been characterized as a pandemic by the World Health Organization, has highlighted an issue in the United States. Experts are telling people to reduce social interaction with others, called social distancing, to reduce the rate of transmission. But what if your  job requires you to be around people?  And what if you are paid hourly and can't afford to take time off? That's an issue for many workers, especially those in the food industry. Because of this pandemic, restaurant unpaid sick leave policies are changing now. There is no federal regulation mandating paid sick leave in this country. Sick leave is set by corporations and some states. And since 1 in 4 Americans, or 32,000,000 people, have no sick leave, they are often unwilling or simply … [Read more...]

Possible Poisoning Outbreak at Jimmy John’s on Laclede in St. Louis

A possible food poisoning outbreak at a Jimmy John's restaurant at 3822 Laclede Avenue in St. Louis, Missouri may have sickened "multiple" students who attend St. Louis University. The University News, the newspaper for that campus, published this information on February 20, 2020. The article states that multiple students got sick "shortly after eating at the sandwich shop, some even being hospitalized." It seems that these illnesses happened in mid to late January 2020. The students attended a campus retreat for an SLU organization and that retreat was catered by Jimmy John's. More than a dozen students were sickened after attending that retreat and eating the food provided by Jimmy John's. They suffered from weakness and vomiting. The paper claims that the restaurant was shut … [Read more...]

Yosemite National Park Stomach Illness Outbreak Sickens Visitors

Federal health officials say a Yosemite National Park stomach illness outbreak has sickened at least a dozen people, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. An investigation has been launched after the reports of illness began, and inspections are being conducted at the service facilities. The illness or origin of the outbreak have not been identified. Those sickened are recovering or have already recovered. There is no information about this outbreak on Yosemite's web site. The concession provider is Aramark. They operate Yosemite's hotels, snack shops, and restaurants. Officials say they are cleaning and disinfecting their venues in the Park, which include the Ahwahnee Hotel. According to NBC News, complaints about Aramark's service have been "numerous," ranging from for food … [Read more...]

What Are the Symptoms of Common Foodborne Pathogens?

Since 48,000,000 Americans are sickened with food poisoning every year, which hospitalizes 128,000 and kills about 3,000, consumers should know the symptoms of these illnesses so they can get prompt treatment. There are 31 different pathogens that are known to cause foodborne illness, but the three most common are Salmonella, Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC), and Listeria monocytogenes. What are the symptoms of common foodborne pathogens? Salmonella Symptoms Symptoms of a Salmonella food poisoning illness include a mild fever, a headache, abdominal cramps, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea that may be bloody. Symptoms usually start 12 to 72 hours after ingestion of the pathogen. Most people do recover on their own without medical treatment, which is why food safety experts use … [Read more...]

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