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Internet Journal of Food Saety

7/10
2005
ISSUE:170

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Outbreak of Shiga toxin producing E. coli (STEC) infections associated with a petting zoo at the North Carolina Sate Fair - Raleigh, North Carolina
June 29, 2005
North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services
Brant Goode and Ciara O¡¯Reilly

Oregon salmonella cases linked to Cold Stone Creamery ice cream
Source of Article: http://www.newportnewstimes.com
Jul 06, 2005
A new outbreak of salmonellosis has been traced to consumption of Cold Stone Creamery ice cream, public health officials in the Oregon Department of Human Services (DHS) said today.
Cold Stone announced a national recall of "cake batter" flavor ice cream today, after the Minnesota Department of Health linked cases of Salmonella Typhimurium in that state to consumption of that flavor.
As of today, Oregon public health officials have identified four salmonellosis cases that appear to be part of this cluster, in Linn, Lane and Washington counties.
Other cases have been identified in Washington and Ohio and the number of Oregon and national cases is expected to increase.
Kohn said there are at least 20 Cold Stone Creameries in Oregon, including one in Lincoln City.
more information

New biosensor designed for poultry industry
Source of Article: http://www.foodproductiondaily.com/

27/06/2005 - Georgia Research Tech Institute is developing a new pathogen biosensor for the poultry industry as part of its work to extend the use of such devices to the food industry. The university's new Interferometric Biosensor is one of the latest in a series targeted at the food industry. The interferometric tackles the poultry industry's pursuit of better methods for controlling foodborne pathogens in the plant.

Over the last decade the poultry industry has implemented the systematic microbial screening of products and processes. Most processing operations have also introduced new rinse and anti-microbial treatments. "Yet, the long time delay between sample collection and obtaining microbial screening results continues to hamper the efficiency of these programmes," Georgia Tech said in an announcement about the new biosensor.

"In the absence of simple, inexpensive, and rapid microbial detection techniques, little feedback is available to help plants recognise changing microbial conditions as they are occurring. This, in turn, prevents them from better managing the intervention resources they are using to control microbial contaminants."

Laboratory tests indicate the new Interferometric can detect the presence of salmonella and campylobacter in less than 30 minutes. more information

HOW TO KEEP YOUR FOCUS ON FOOD SAFETY
Nortwest Food Processors Association Food Safety News
July 6, 2005
by William D. Marler, Esq.
Recently, the media has focused public attention on a one-inch
piece (uncooked) of a fi nger found in the chili at a fast-food
restaurant. Claims and counterclaims have fl own. But, at this writing,
most indications point to a grotesque hoax.
It¡¯s too bad that some people make bogus, unsupportable claims of
food borne illness. But they do, and that means that health offi cials ? and
lawyers ? need reliable criteria for identifying illegitimate claims. At the
same time, the food industry tends to overemphasize, and thus overreact
to, such claims. Such a strategy can lead to the denial of legitimate complaints. Denying legitimate claims
increases the likelihood of overlooking real problems with food safety. And overlooking real problems increases
the risk of regulatory and health code violations, of poisoning consumers, costly litigation and public headaches.
So how does one distinguish between legitimate and illegitimate or unsupported claims of food poisoning? On
a slow day, our fi rm gets about 25 emails and phone calls from prospective clients. We reject about 95% of them,
mostly on the basis of a few basic criteria, such as the following:
? Incubation Period
? The Food Looked/Smelled/Tasted Funny
? Gross-Out Claims
At Marler Clark, we use four methods for evaluating a claim of foodborne illness. These methods can provide a
useful set of criteria for the food industry, both the manufacturing and foodservice sectors, from which to evaluate
incoming customer complaints.
Articles are excerpts or summaries from sources named.
Articles are excerpts or summaries from sources named.
The Health Department Investigation of an Outbreak
In litigating thousands of food poisoning claims arising out of dozens of outbreaks, many defendants have taken
issue with some or all of the Health Department¡¯s conclusions regarding the outbreak. None of these defendants,
however, have yet avoided liability where the Health Department concluded that the defendant¡¯s food was the
source of a given outbreak. One likely reason for this is that, in general, Health Departments do good and careful
work. In addition, Health Departments are operating with a much higher burden of proof than the civil justice
system.
Prior Health Inspections/Violations.
One extraordinarily effective tool in establishing the defectiveness of a product that no longer exists is to
obtain documentation of a restaurant¡¯s track record. Supportive documents can be acquired through the discovery
process or through the Freedom of Information Act.
Identifying the Improper Procedure that Led to the Contamination of the Food
It is rare for lawyers or investigators to arrive on the scene of alleged contamination in time to recover
contaminated leftovers. But this missing piece of the puzzle can be supplied by identifying specifi c errors in the
preparation of the suspected food or foods.
Medical Records.
What medical evidence can make or break a case? Four types of medical records can help establish the credibility
of a claim. First, of course, are laboratory tests. In reviewing a claim, it is important to recognize that laboratory
testing is not always ordered by healthcare providers.
Secondly, records can show whether the symptoms of foodborne illness match the expected incubation period.
Third, investigators can match symptoms with typical profi les of a given pathogen or a given outbreak.
Finally, while the lack of a laboratory test or a negative result may detract from the strength of a claimant¡¯s case,
it is unwise to assume invulnerability where a lack of a positive test can be easily explained by other factors.
When a claim is made, you can quickly and fairly decide if it is serious; if it is not, then fi ght it. If a claim has
merit, treat the customer fairly and learn from your error.
Source: FoodSafety Magazine June/July 2005

Charm Sciences and Ecolab Launch the Next Generation in ATP Hygiene Technology


July 1, 2005 Charm Sciences and Ecolab today announced the availability of novaLUMa, a palm-sized luminometer that is packed with powerful HACCP-friendly tests to aid in ATP-based hygiene monitoring programs in the dairy, food and beverage processing industries. The novaLUM¡¯s revolutionary lightweight, ergonomic design offers unrivaled versatility with several ATP-based test applications, including validation of sanitation effectiveness and assessment of allergen control programs. The novaLUM features a complete numeric keyboard with a rocker toggle switch, as well as direct swab entry chamber design, ensuring the fastest pre-operational results. The entire family of Charm ATP tests is designed for use with novaLUM, including PocketSwaba Plus, AllerGienea and WaterGienea. The PocketSwab Plus single service hygiene test has improved shelf stability and no longer requires refrigeration. AllerGiene is an ATP-based test with greatly enhanced sensitivity to aid in detection of potentially allergenic food residues. WaterGiene is the most sensitive ATP indicator of water quality when run on the novaLUM. All novaLUM tests are conveniently stored, tracked and trended by the new novaLinka software. The novaLUM stores 6000 test results and is configured to manage multiple sampling plans and surface types with a remarkable 400 test sites per plan. more information

VERIFICATION OF ACTIVITIES RELATED TO AN ESTABLISHMENT'S CONTROLS FOR THE USE OF INGREDIENTS OF PUBLIC HEALTH CONCERN
PURPOSE
This notice provides inspection program personnel with instructions for verifying that establishments have the appropriate process controls in place for ingredients that are public health concerns because they can trigger food sensitivities (such as food allergies and intolerances). This notice is necessary because of the sustained number of recalls associated with adulterated and misbranded meat and poultry products because of the undeclared presence of ingredients that are capable of causing adverse reactions
more information

Food Safe Schools Action Guide from FDA

National Advisory Committee on Microbiological Criteria for Foods to Hold Public Meeting
Congressional and Public Affairs
(202) 720-9113
Bridgette Keefe
WASHINGTON, July 5, 2005-The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today that the National Advisory Committee on Microbiological Criteria for Foods (NACMCF) will hold public meetings July 12 - 15, 2005.
The full committee and subcommittees will meet on Tuesday, July 12, from 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Wednesday and Thursday, July 13 and 14, from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Friday, July 15, from 8:30 a.m. to noon. All meetings will be held at the Washington Plaza Hotel, 10 Thomas Circle NW, Washington, D.C.

Agenda items include:
The Analytical Utility of Campylobacter Methodologies;
The Determination of Cooking Parameters for Safe Seafood for Consumers; and
Consumer Guidelines for the Safe Cooking of Poultry Products.

The NACMCF was established in 1988 to provide advice and recommendations to the Secretary of Agriculture and the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services on public health issues relative to the safety and wholesomeness of the U.S. food supply. These issues include the development of microbiological criteria, the review and evaluation of epidemiological and risk assessment data, and methodologies for assessing microbiological hazards
in foods.

Persons requiring further meeting information, a sign language interpreter or other special accommodations should contact Karen Thomas no later than July 8, 2005, by phone at (202) 690-6620 or by e-mail at Karen.Thomas@fsis.usda.gov.

NEW FOOD ALLERGY RESEARCH CONSORTIUM LAUNCHED

Nortwest Food Processors Association Food Safety News
July 6, 2005
The U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) announced that a new Food Allergy
Research Consortium is to be led by Hugh Sampson at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York.
The consortium will receive approximately $17 million over fi ve years from the NIAID, part of the National
Institutes of Health. In addition, a fi ve-year NIAID grant totaling approximately $5 million to the Emmes Corp.,
of Rockville, MD, will fund a statistical center to support the consortium.
The consortium¡¯s fi rst project will be a clinical study to evaluate a potential peanut allergy therapy. This potential
therapy is expected to work in much the same fashion as allergy shots in which allergic individuals are given
increasing doses of an allergen.
Source: IFT Weekly Newsletter 6/29/05

JOB OPENINGS

Dir. of Tech. and Process Valid. - CO-Boulder/Ft. Collins ? Swift & Co.

Food Safety & QA Mgr - CO-Boulder/Fort Collins ? Swift & Co.

Manager Sanitation* - Garner, NC - ConAgra Foods, Inc.

Sanitation Manager - WA-Seattle ? Campbell Soup Co.

Quality Assurance Team Leader - Chatsworth, CA - Nestle USA

QA Inspectional Services Supervisor - Columbus, OH ? Wendy¡¯s Int¡¯l, Inc.

Quality Services Technician - Los Angeles, CA ? Mars, Incorporated

Quality Assurance Specialist - Omaha, NE ? ConAgra Foods, Inc.

Food Safety Specialist - Albuquerque, NM - The Steritech Group

Quality Services Manager - IL-Chicago ? Kraft Foods