Training Program for All Employees
source from cornell.edu/
Toxin-producing E. coli (STEC), O157 and Non-O157
source from wisc.edu
of Food Protection
Assurance Manager - CO-Denver
Director of Quality and R&D - Chicago, IL
Safety Specialist - Flint, MI
SUPERVISOR - CITY OF INDUSTRY, CA
Journal of Food Safety
Food Safety Standards and Market Assess: Developing countries scientists
a new engagement with trade
submit your research note or articles for Internet Journal of Food Safety, click
Processors who need specific tranings
food processors need
supplemental food safety training.
Also, there are
many food safety
educators. FoodHACCP is trying to
Guidance for Industry on Studies to Evaluate the Safety of Residues of Veterinary
Of Press Gaggle With Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns - Washington, DC
Statement by Secretary Mike Johanns and Minister Andrew Mitchell
By Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns
Proposes $1.9 Billion Budget to Expand Food Defense Effort
FDA budget would expand food defense effort
of Article: http://www.ift.org/
2006 fiscal year budget requested by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) includes
an increase of $30.1 million to defend the U.S. food supply from terrorist attacks.
FDA's portion is only part of the food defense effort, which also involves the
USDA's Food Safety & Inspection Service (FSIS), the Department of Homeland
Security (DHS) and the White House Homeland Security Council. The total budget
authority for items related to food defense has increased 20 percent, to $180
million from $150 million.
The proposed increase for the food counter-terrorism
program includes funds for long-range projects by FDA and FSIS including:
of the joint FDA-FSIS Food Emergency Response Network (FERN) of laboratories capable
of analyzing thousands of food samples for biological, chemical and radiological
threats. The FY 2006 budget would add an estimated 19 FDA-funded state labs. Nearly
two-thirds of the requested $30 million requested would be spent on FERN.
research in those areas posing the greatest perceived threat to the food supply,
as well as research related to prevention/mitigation technologies, tamper proof
packaging, rapid test methods, and/or agent sensor technologies.
coordination and data-sharing with the DHS as part of the government-wide Bio-Surveillance
development of the FDA's crisis- and incident-management infrastructure, which
is required to manage emergencies involving FDA-regulated products.
error may delay Canada cattle trade
- Democratic Sen. Kent Conrad of North Dakota was cited as saying on Friday that
a procedural misstep by the Bush administration may require a delay in its plan
to resume imports of some beef and cattle from Canada on March 7, because the
U.S. Agriculture Department failed to notify the Senate of its trade regulation,
despite being required by law to do so, Congress has the power to review major
regulations and can overturn them.
Department spokeswoman Alisa Harrison was
quoted as saying, "As far as the administration is concerned, we submitted
it properly. We consider March 7 to still be the effective date."
gave to reporters copies of a receipt signed by Vice President Dick Cheney's office
on Jan. 4 to accept the formal notice of the rule. The vice president's office
routinely accepts filings on behalf of the Senate, she said.
It was unclear
what happened afterward.
Clerical officials in the Senate could not say if
they had received the notification. An Internet search of the Congressional Record
found no reference to the regulation in Senate activities, although it was cited
among "executive communications" in the House on Feb. 1.
further cited as saying the procedural problem was discovered when he and several
other senators tried to file a resolution on Thursday to void the USDA rule.
search of the Congressional Record by Internet on Friday found a reference to
the USDA rule among "executive communications" to the House of Representatives
but no similar mention in the Senate.
newspaper predicts border will not open to U.S. beef until summer's end
by Pete Hisey on 2/11/05 for Meatingplace.com
Citing internal disagreements
within Japan's Food Safety Commission, a complicated process to revise the country's
law that all cattle slaughtered must be tested for bovine spongiform encephalopathy
and recent events such as the death of a Japanese man from variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob
disease, Japanese newspaper the Asahi Shimbun predicted that the market would
not open to American beef until the end of the summer at the earliest."Optimists
say the decision (to accept American beef graded A40) should help to accelerate
work to change domestic safety standards," the paper said. "But that
is not the case."
A review of the system is underway, but "has taken
much longer than expected." Even if the panel conducting the review were
to recommend ending the requirement to test cattle under 20 months of age, there
is no certainty that the Food Safety Commission would approve it.Meanwhile, Japan
and the United States will hold meetings soon at which Tokyo will present Washington
with a list of requirements the Japanese want met in confirming the age of cattle
and other safeguards against infection. No date has been set for the meetings,
according to an Agricultural Ministry official.
Changes Course On Canada Beef Trade
The Bush administration
on Wednesday said it will withdraw a plan to allow imports of Canadian beef from
older cattle starting on March 7, bowing to U.S. meatpackers' complaints. However,
on that date the border will still reopen to live Canadian cattle under 30 months
of age, which are viewed as unlikely to carry mad cow disease or bovine spongiform
encephalopathy (BSE). All Canadian cattle have been banned for import since May
2003, following the discovery of Canada's first domestic case of mad cow disease.
reversal on imports of beef from older Canadian cattle came after a spirited lobbying
campaign by American meatpackers. They complained the plan would have increased
the flow of cheap Canadian beef at a time when U.S. plants were shutting down
due to a shortage of live cattle. Complicating matters was Canada's discovery
of two more cases of mad cow disease around the time the U.S. government unveiled
its plan to ease trade restrictions. ``Our ongoing investigations into the recent
finds of BSE in Canada in animals over 30 months are not complete. Therefore,
I feel it is prudent to delay the effective date for allowing imports of meat
from animals 30 months and over,'' U.S. Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns said.
Johanns said he would initiate a process that could lead to the opening of the
U.S. border to Canadian cattle over 30 months as well as beef from those older
animals. USDA officials would not speculate on how long that might take. Some
government and industry officials have estimated it could be at least a few months.
In August 2003, USDA ended a blanket ban on Canadian beef when it opened the border
to boxed beef from young cattle, a product thought to have the lowest BSE risk.
The USDA emphasized it will stick to the rest of its plan, announced on Dec. 29,
to reopen the border to Canadian cattle under 30 months old. ``We still plan to
implement that part of the rule,'' USDA spokesman Ed Loyd said. The
cattle ban has been a hardship for U.S. meatpacking plants, which previously imported
more than 1 million live Canadian cattle annually to keep plants operating efficiently.Wednesday's
announcement came after Canadian Agriculture Minister Andy Mitchell met with Johanns
and farm-state senators. Mitchell said he was ``pleased'' that USDA will now consider
allowing imports of older Canadian cattle.
Tom Harkin of Iowa, the senior Democrat on the Senate Agriculture Committee, has
urged USDA to completely scrap expanded beef or cattle trade with Canada.
he called the new USDA decision ¡°a significant step in the right direction,''
Harkin continued to voice doubts about Canada's compliance with international
mad cow safeguards.
Richard Lugar, a Republican from Indiana, said USDA's move ``probably bought a
little time to mollify people'' while Johanns continues to persuade Japan to accept
was the top importer of American beef until the United States confirmed its first
case of mad cow disease at the end of 2003.
traders have been keeping close watch on USDA's plans for reopening the border
to Canadian beef and cattle.
is a positive thing for the market, but I think it has been anticipated,'' said
Jim Clarkson, analyst with Chicago-based A. and A. Trading. Clarkson doubted there
will be much price reaction in cattle futures trading on the Chicago Mercantile
Exchange on Thursday.
issue has also been targeted in court.
activist U.S. cattle group, R-CALF USA, asked a federal judge in Montana to stop
the movement of any Canadian cattle into the United States. Meanwhile, the American
Meat Institute, representing meatpackers, has sued to remove all Canada trade
FINDS POTENTIAL TEFLON CHEMICAL RISKS
Food Processors Food Safety News February 9, 2004
Environmental Protection Agency says that exposure to even low levels of perfl
uorooctanoic acid and its salts, known as PFOA, or C-8, used to make the nonstick
substance Tefl on, could pose ¡°a potential risk of developmental and other adverse
Charles Auer, director of EPA¡¯s Offi ce of Pollution Prevention and
Toxics emphasized that their draft risk
assessment was not conclusive, adding,
¡°We¡¯ve not offered any determinations of risks,¡± and that the draft report,
on animal studies, would be sent to a science advisory board for helping determining
DuPont and EPA have been sparring over PFOA, used to make many of
the company¡¯s most popular products,
which range from auto fuel systems, fi
refi ghting foam and phone cables to computer chips, cookware and clothing.
maker DuPont Co., which is based in Wilmington, Del., and produces the chemical
at a plant in Fayetteville, N.C., said it welcomed EPA¡¯s report and was trying
to minimize people¡¯s exposure to the chemical, adding, ¡°Although, to date, no
human health effects are known to be caused by PFOA, the company recognizes that
the presence of PFOA in human blood raises questions that should be addressed.¡±
can help stem spread of infectious diseases after disasters
University of South Florida
Biosensors developed at the University
of South Florida lab of Luis Garcia-Rubio, a chemical engineer at the university¡¯s
College of Marine Science, can detect infectious diseases in blood and bodily
fluids as well as identify pathogenic microorganisms in contaminated water. The
new sensors could be our most effective future frontline defense against diseases
emerging after disasters such as the recent tsunami, as well as help reduce the
every day, annual rates of illness and deaths caused by contaminated water and
unsanitary conditions world-wide.
¡°In the wake of the recent tsunami, it was
anticipated that infectious diseases could increase dramatically in affected areas,¡±
Garcia-Rubio said. ¡°Public health officials rightfully fear thousands more will
die from infectious water-borne and water related diseases after the tsunami.
When people are forced to live in crowded refugee camps, they are more easily
exposed to infectious diseases that spread quickly due to a lack of clean drinking
water and unsanitary conditions.¡±
The CMS research group, comprised of engineers,
physicists microbiologists and chemists, is now testing portable, miniaturized
biosensors that can - in real-time and continuously - monitor for a number of
infectious diseases using as little as a single drop of blood. The sensors then
wirelessly teleport data to a remote location for analysis..
identifying how an organism absorbs and scatters light, our new, minimally invasive
technology identifies the light wave spectrum in a sample collected on-site,¡±
explained Garcia-Rubio. ¡°Because each organism absorbs and scatters light differently,
we can analyze the light wave spectrum and scatter pattern and identify an organism
in the sample by comparing those patterns with known, cataloged samples.¡±
to now, said Garcia-Rubio, without expensive processes and highly trained personnel,
there have been no portable instruments capable of detecting and classifying either
microorganisms or cells in real time.
After patenting their technology, the
research group has moved into field experiments with confidence that in the near
future their advancement will be available to help public health officials rapidly
detect not only infectious diseases, commonplace after natural disasters like
the recent tsunami, but also waterborne pathogens that can occur in the drinking
water of developed countries, including the United States.
According to Debra
Huffman, a collaborator of Garcia-Rubio¡¯s lab, the new biosensors can detect malarial
parasites, the dengue virus that causes dengue fever, e. coli, salmonella, shigalla
and listeria as well as causes of bacterial dysentery, such as cryptosporidium
(protozoan parasites). The sensors can also identify bacillus antrhacis, anthrax
that can be weaponized by terrorists.
¡°Development and implementation of portable
cost effective technologies for the early and rapid diagnosis of pathogenic microorganisms
and infectious diseases is the best way to stem the spread of disease following
an environmental disaster,¡± said Garcia-Rubio. ¡°However, the new technology can
also help prevent the yearly illnesses and deaths resulting from contaminated
water supplies both globally and here in the U.S.¡±
It doesn¡¯t take a tsunami
to cause widespread illnesses resulting from contact with contaminated water.
¡°The World Health Organization reported in 2002 that there are nearly two
million deaths annually related to unsafe water and poor sanitation and hygiene,¡±
pointed out Huffman. ¡°The majority of those deaths are among children under five
years of age.¡±
According to Huffman, diarrhoeal diseases account for one-third
of illnesses globally and are the sixth leading cause of deaths world-wide.
disasters notwithstanding, one sixth of the world¡¯s population lacks good access
to safe water,¡± she said.
The new biosensors can help reduce those rates.
Allergy Initiative Sponsors an Educational Symposium
Food Allergy Initiative
Allergy Initiative Sponsors an Educational Symposium: Understanding and Managing
Your Child's Food Allergy
Thursday February 10
of Article: http://biz.yahoo.com/
YORK, Feb. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- Did you know that a grandmother's kiss can cause
an allergic reaction in her food allergic child? Parents of children with food
allergies have safety concerns that go above and beyond those of other parents.
To help them keep their children out of harm's way, the Food Allergy Initiative
(FAI) sponsored an Educational Symposium, "Understanding and Managing Your
Child's Food Allergy," presented by The Elliot And Roslyn Jaffe Food Allergy
Institute at Mount Sinai School of Medicine on Thursday, February 10, 2005. Dr.
Hugh A. Sampson, Division Chief, Pediatric Allergy and Immunology at the Mount
Sinai School of Medicine, and a panel of clinicians and researchers at the Institute,
addressed the most pressing issues facing food allergic families-how to keep children
with life-threatening food allergies alive until a cure is found. The clinical
faculty, nurse and dietitian also discussed how food allergy and anaphylaxis are
diagnosed and treated, how to manage food allergies in schools, and issues in
maintaining a well-balanced diet for children with food allergies. An additional
highlight was a review of cutting-edge food allergy research being conducted at
the Institute. Over 100 parents, school nurses, pediatricians and others caring
for food allergic children were in attendance.
Food allergies are extremely
serious because an even a miniscule amount of the wrong food can result in anaphylaxis,
a rapid, immune-mediated, systemic reaction to allergens that may result in death.
At present, there is no cure for anaphylaxis or food allergies. Until a cure is
found, education is the key to helping the 11 million children and adults who
live in fear of eating the wrong food. FAI is a national, non-profit organization
dedicated to finding a cure for life-threatening food allergies and anaphylaxis
by 2010. In addition to funding research and clinical activities to identify and
treat those at risk, FAI supports public policy initiatives to create safer environments
for those afflicted, and educational programs to heighten awareness among health
and child care workers, schools, camps, and members of the hospitality and foodservice
industries about food allergies and the danger of anaphylaxis. The Elliot and
Roslyn Jaffe Food Allergy Institute at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine is located
in New York City. It was established in 1997 as the world's first dedicated food
allergy center for comprehensive patient care and research. It remains the premier
Center of Excellence, providing state-of- the-art diagnosis and treatment in a
compassionate and child-friendly manner. Hugh Sampson, MD, an internationally
recognized allergist and investigator of food allergy, directs the Institute.
In addition, The Jaffe Food Allergy Institute is the leading center for research
in food allergy and publishes more research studies on food allergy than any other
single program in the world. The Institute also recognizes a responsibility to
educate other physicians about food allergy. Therefore, the Institute faculty
trains allergists-in-training and other physicians on diagnosis and management
of food allergy. For further information about the symposium, please contact Rachel
Sanzari, MS, RD at (212) 527-5835. For information about the Food Allergy Initiative,
visit http://www.FoodAllergyInitiative.org .
mad cow madness:
Ottawa has been too slow to take all the steps necessary to control BSE
Recent disclosures of more mad
cows in our midst, according to this story, raise the nagging question of why
Canada is not doing far more to screen the nation's cattle herds for the dreaded
bovine spongiform encephalopathy, better known as mad cow disease.
says that the reason we're seeing more confirmed BSE cases is that surveillance
is on the upswing, with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency this year testing
30,000 slaughtered cows for BSE, up from 5,490 in 2003. But that's still a rather
thin slice, when you consider the Canadian beef industry slaughters over three
million animals annually. And it pales beside efforts in Europe, where every slaughtered
cow over 30months of age is tested, or Japan, where all slaughtered cows are tested,
period. One begins to wonder: how many more diseased animals would emerge if we
followed their examples? And are we afraid to find out?
The story says that
long before the first Canadian-born mad cow surfaced in May 2003, independent
scientists who study brain-wasting conditions were urging federal authorities
to pre-emptively step up surveillance. They warned that, because BSE has such
a lengthy incubation period -- four to five years -- untold numbers of animals
could be exposed to the disease before a single case came to light. Their appeals
fell on deaf ears.
David Westaway, a University of Toronto molecular biologist
who has spent two decades studying prions, was cited as saying he believes Canada
should follow Europe's lead and test all slaughtered cows over 30 months (older
cattle are more likely to show signs of BSE), meaning the screening about 500,000
animals annually, or about 17 times the current number, adding, "We have
to see what the real incidence is, rather than what one hopes or guesses it is."
including many ordinary ranchers, would like to go further, and test all animals
regardless of age. This view is endorsed by Stanley Prusiner, a professor of neurology
and biochemistry at the University of California, who won the 1997 Nobel Prize
in medicine for his research into prions. In a recent article for Scientific American,
Prusiner wrote: "I see no other option for adequately protecting the human
of outbreak at school revealed
February 10, 2005
By ERIN MAYES
Source of Article: http://www.uniondemocrat.com/
outbreak last week of gastrointestinal illness at San Andreas Elementary School
was caused by the highly contagious norovirus, county health officials confirmed
yesterday. The virus is transmitted primarily through consumption of food contaminated
by an ill person who uses poor hygiene and by direct person-to-person contact,
health officials said. It hasn't been determined if the outbreak was spread through
food, but Public Health Officer Dr. Dean Kelaita said almost everyone who had
the illness at San Andreas Elementary ate at the school's cafeteria for lunch.
Norovirus is the name for a group of viruses described as "Norwalk-like viruses,"
so called because of a gastroenteritis outbreak in a school in Norwalk, Ohio in
1968, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control. County Public Health
Director Colleen Tracy said once one person in a family becomes sick with the
illness, the entire family usually becomes sick, too, because the virus is highly
contagious. The same virus may be cropping up on a much smaller scale at other
schools in Calaveras Unified School District, Kelaita said. An ill student from
Jenny Lind Elementary School in Valley Springs has it, he said."Noroviruses
are very infectious, so we expected that surveillance at other schools would result
in additional cases being found," Kelaita said.Last Friday, San Andreas Elementary
officials said 25 percent of the student population ? 90 children ? were out sick.
About 60 of those are believed to have had the norovirus. The illness is not serious
in most people and can last from eight hours to a few days. The main symptoms
are rapid onset of vomiting or diarrhea and stomach cramps. Fever, headache and
body aches may be present, too. The CDC estimates at least 50 percent of all foodborne
outbreaks of gastroenteritis can be attributed to noroviruses. Of 232 norovirus
outbreaks reported to CDC from July 1997 to June 2000, 57 percent were foodborne,
16 percent were due to person-to-person spread, and 3 percent were waterborne.
In 23 percent of outbreaks, the cause of transmission was not determined.The outbreaks
were mostly associated with restaurants, catered meals, nursing homes, schools,
and vacation settings or cruise ships. The Public Health Department notified parents
of students in the Calaveras Unified School District to keep students home if
they develop symptoms. Anyone who gets the illness should stay home for at least
48 hours after symptoms end, health officials said. Kelaita advised families to
prevent the spread of the illness by keeping children home if they are vomiting
or have diarrhea, and keeping them home at least 48 hours after symptoms stop.
Good hand-washing should be practiced ? hands should be scrubbed with soap for
at least 30 seconds before rinsing and household disinfectant should be used to
thoroughly clean any areas where vomiting or diarrhea occur. For more information,
contact the Calaveras County Public Health Department at 754-6460.
of wood is key to beating superbug
Source of Article: http://news.scotsman.com/
CHANCE meeting with a student who was chewing on a piece of wood has sparked a
major breakthrough in food safety. Researchers
at the city¡¯s Heriot-Watt University have discovered that chemicals in teak wood
- including a mystery substance - seem to be resistant to the superbug MRSA and
professor Brian Austin decided to experiment following a conversation with PhD
student Abda Neumatallah, who was using a traditional teak-wood chewing stick.People
in the Middle East and Africa have chewed on certain types of wood for centuries
in the belief that it prevents tooth decay. Prof
Austin studied the claims and found that there was evidence that teak could kill
bacteria. He has now developed a new way to smoke fish which prolongs its shelf-life
and researchers now plan to pitch the findings to food industry bosses. An
expert in aquaculture, marine biotechnology and mathematical biology, Prof Austin
is most excited about finding what may be a previously unknown chemical. He
said: "I queried one of my PhD students about a stick of wood he was chewing."He
is from Saudi Arabia, and told me that chewing of certain woods, including the
teak stick he was using, was a traditional way to avoid dental caries in the Middle
East and Africa. "Intrigued,
we conducted a series of experiments on teak wood and managed to extract two compounds,
one already known from walnuts and one which seems to be new. "Then,
since we specialise in fish breeding and some manufacturing techniques, we decided
to add some teak, about ten per cent, to the usual oak chips as part of our fish-smoking
were delighted to discover that the fish smoked this way stayed fresh longer and
that all bacteria was eliminated, even when we cheated and added extra bacteria."Prof
Austin now plans to conduct more experiments with co-supervisor Dr Susan Dewar.The
team will also speak to commercial fish smokers about their discoveries and how
they might be applied in the industry. Listeria
is a bacteria that causes an infection known as listeriosis. Listeria infections
are rare, but pregnant women who have a listeria infection can become ill and
their baby may die or be born prematurely. The
findings could also be used to help tackle MRSA. Scotland¡¯s
hospitals have some of the highest MRSA rates in the developed world. Leading
microbiologist Professor Hugh Pennington said the discovery was a sign of researchers
going "back to basics". He
said: "We were told around ten years ago to stop using wooden chopping boards
but then we discovered that they actually work in our favour. "People
have gone back to dealing with traditional remedies and this is a real back-to-basics
Goat, Killed in 1990, May Have Had BSE, Government Says
of Article: http://www.bloomberg.com/
8 (Bloomberg) -- A Scottish goat, slaughtered in 1990, may have had bovine spongiform
encephalopathy, also known as mad- cow disease, the U.K. agriculture department
suspected case follows last month's first confirmed instance of the brain disease
in a goat; that case involved a French goat killed in 2002.
disease was first diagnosed in the U.K. in 1986 and was transmitted to cattle
through feed that included ground-up parts of infected animals. An epidemic of
BSE in British cattle peaked at 36,680 cases in 1992 and resulted in the slaughter
of millions of animals.
Department for Environment Food and Regional Affairs ``will be stepping up its
surveillance program for goats,'' the department's Chief Veterinary Officer Debby
Reynolds said in an e- mailed statement. ``There is a distinct possibility that
the animal, if infected with BSE, was exposed to contaminated feed.''
department said it can't be certain that the U.K. goat had BSE until further tests
have been conducted and that it may take as long as two years before the findings
can be confirmed.
European Union's executive arm said Jan. 28 that a French goat had BSE and announced
a more extensive testing program for the animals. Consumers shouldn't change their
eating habits as a result of the discovery, the EU said at the time.
tests have shown that it is possible for sheep, as well as goats and cattle to
contract BSE. The latter two are more likely to have been fed a high protein diet
including remains of other animals in order to bolster their milk production,
according to Peter Hardwick, International manager of the U.K. Meat and Livestock
are significant differences in the way that sheep are reared and the way that
goats are reared,'' Hardwick said. In addition scientists have managed to breed
sheep with enhanced immunity to brain diseases similar to BSE.
human variant of BSE, Creutzfeldt-Jacob disease, caught by eating infected beef,
has been responsible for more than 130 human deaths in the U.K. since 1990. The
disease, which is always fatal, causes progressive loss of mental function and
the U.K. outbreak, the commission introduced measures in sheep, goats and cattle
to limit recurrences such as banning the use of meat and bone meal as feed.
Spain and France had the biggest goat populations among the 15 members that comprised
the EU in 2003.
the USDA Meat & Poultry Hotline at:
send Email to:
phone or on the Web, answers to your questions on... Safe food storage, handling,
Power outages and much