July 23, 2021

Was Recalled Tyson Chicken Imported From China? The Answer is No

After seeing some rumors about the Tyson chicken recalled for possible Listeria contamination being processed in China, Food Poisoning Bulletin conducted some research. While it is true that as of 2013, China can export processed chicken to the United States (the rule was finalized in 2017), was recalled Tyson chicken imported from China? The answer is no. A USDA-FSIS spokesperson told us, "The product subject to recall was not processed in China. The product was processed at Tyson Foods establishment in Dexter, Missouri with domestic source materials." Indeed, the Tyson website says the same thing, adding that these rumors are a hoax. And even though it's now legal, very little processed chicken is exported from China to the United States. The Tyson chicken in question was … [Read more...]

Food Safety Tips During Hurricanes and Severe Storms

With the first named Atlantic hurricane approaching the U.S. mainland, the USDA is offering food safety tips during hurricanes and severe storms. The best thing to do is to be prepared before storms hit. And this advice applies to all Americans, not just those who live in hurricane-prone areas. First, make sure that you keep an appliance thermometer in your refrigerator and freezer. The freezer must be kept at 0°F or below, and the refrigerator between 33°F and 40°F to slow down most bacterial growth. Then, freeze containers of water for ice to help keep food frozen in the freezer or cold in the fridge or in coolers if the power goes out. Make more ice cubes too. You can also use this ice for drinking water if flooding occurs and you need a clean source of water. Freeze … [Read more...]

Fourth of July Food Safety Tips From the USDA to Stay Safe

These Fourth of July food safety tips from the USDA will help you and your guests stay safe to enjoy the long holiday weekend. Follow basic food safety tips, and add those that apply when you are cooking and eating outdoors, especially in hot weather. First, start by always washing your hands with soap and water before you start cooking and before you eat. Learn how to properly wash your hands. Second, keep raw meats, poultry, seafood, and eggs away from foods that are eaten uncooked, such as produce and salads. Use separate and different colored cutting boards for meats and for fresh fruits and vegetables, and yet another for cheeses, which can be contaminated with bacteria. If you are grilling outdoors, follow the rules for safe grilling, including not grilling inside, in a … [Read more...]

Do You Know If You Are Grilling Mechanically Tenderized Beef?

With grilling season upon us and the Fourth of July holiday next week, most Americans are taking to their outdoor grills. We grill everything from chicken wings to veggies to burgers to steaks. But do you know if you are grilling mechanically tenderized beef? There are several ways of tenderizing meat: marinating, the way you cut it after it's cooked, and mechanical tenderizing. Knowing if the meat you are grilling is mechanically tenderized can make the difference between enjoying a nice meal and getting sick. And there's a lot of mechanically tenderized beef out there: 6.2 billion servings of mechanically tenderized beef are served every year on American tables. The USDA is offering tips on how to protect yourself and your family while grilling. One section of that piece … [Read more...]

Ten USDA Tips To Keep Restaurant Leftovers Safe at Home

The USDA is offering ten tips to keep restaurant leftovers safe when you take them home. Now that the COVID-19 pandemic is easing, more people are going out to eat. But how you handle doggie bags can have an impact on your health. Firsts of all, if you are having dinner before going to a movie or shopping, do not take leftovers. Perishable food needs to be refrigerated within two hours after it comes out of the oven or fridge. Since it probably took you about an hour to eat, you don't have much time to refrigerate the food. Second, bring the food directly home. The faster you get it into the fridge, the lower the chance that bacteria will grow. Third, you can refrigerate meat and poultry leftovers at 40°F or below for four days. Eggs and lunch meats can be stored in the fridge … [Read more...]

Salmonella Hadar Outbreak May Be Linked to Turkey

The USDA is investigating a Salmonella Hadar outbreak that may be linked to turkey, according to its outbreak investigation table. There is no information about the number of people who have been sickened, illness onset dates, the patient age range, or if anyone has been hospitalized or has died.   The government does not provide any more information about these outbreaks unless there is some action that can be taken by consumers, such as a recall, or if the USDA has issued a public health alert or after-action review report. Salmonella outbreaks linked to turkey have occurred in the past decade. Several serotypes have been represented in those outbreaks, including Salmonella Hadar. Those outbreaks include: In 2019 and in 2018, a very large and complicated Salmonella … [Read more...]

Five Outbreak Investigations on USDA Table; Two Are Active

There are five outbreak investigations on the USDA outbreak response table for 2021 only two are active. That table, like the FDA's CORE Investigation table, does not give much information to the public about the outbreaks. The USDA says that "The table does not include outbreak investigations that did not result in one more of the outcomes." Those outcomes include a recall of an FSIS-regulated product linked to the illnesses, a public health alert, and/or an after-action review report. The inactive outbreaks include an E. coli O145 outbreak that officials suspect is linked to ground beef; an E. coli O157:H7 outbreak of unknown origin that does have a link to a CDC Investigation Notice; and a Listeria monocytogenes outbreak of unknown origin. The E. coli O157:H7 outbreak CDC … [Read more...]

Did You Get Unsolicited Seed Packets in the Mail? The USDA Has Answers

Did you get unsolicited seed packets in the mail in the past few months? The USDA has some answers. The government received thousands of reports from people who got these packets and has completed a months-long investigation. The USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is providing guidance to help people, as well as those who buy plants and seeds online from other countries. U.S. consumers began receiving strange packets of seeds in the mail starting in July 2020. Some were sent to recipients unsolicited, but others were those people ordered, since they were unaware that they were coming from a foreign country. Most of these shipments are illegal since they came into the country without a permit or a phytosanitary certificate. Plant Protection and Quarantine … [Read more...]

What Are the Symptoms of Common Food Allergies?

Food Poisoning Bulletin publishes recalls of food for undeclared allergens from the FDA, USDA, and CFIA every week. These recalls affect just about every food on the market. Food allergies can cause reactions that range from mild to life-threatening. So what are the symptoms of common food allergies? People can be born with food allergies, or they can appear at any time during the lifespan without warning. Some people grow out of their allergies, while others are lifelong. And children are more likely to be allergic to foods than adults. There are some symptoms that are common to most allergens. They include tingling of the mouth, lips, and tongue; itching, rash, and hives; congestion or runny nose; nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. These are usually early symptoms that may appear … [Read more...]

History of E. coli O145 Outbreaks in the United States

There are three active multistate food poisoning outbreaks on the USDA outbreak table: One is for an outbreak caused by Listeria monocytogenes, one caused by Shiga toxin-producing E. coli O157:H7, and one caused by Shiga toxin-producing E. coli O145 bacteria. The last one may be linked to ground beef. Let's look at the history of E. coli O145 outbreaks. What is the history of E. coli O145 outbreaks in the United States? This pathogen is part of the Big Six STEC bacteria group that the USDA classified as adulterants back in 2011. The government started testing for the bacteria as part of a zero tolerance policy in 2012, but it has not been linked to many outbreaks. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there was a multistate outbreak caused by E. coli O145 … [Read more...]

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