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Journal of Food Saety
on Seafood Consumption Still Current
In response to recent inquiries about the FDA/EPA consumer advisory, ¡°What
You Need to Know About Mercury in Fish and Shellfish,¡± FDA and EPA want
to assure consumers that the advice contained in the 2004 advisory remains
current and that FDA and EPA stand behind it. The advisory¡¯s recommendations
are specific to women who might become pregnant, women who are pregnant,
nursing mothers, and young children. Fish and shellfish are an important
part of a healthy diet and can contribute to heart health and children¡¯s
proper growth and development. Because of their many healthy benefits
we recommend that women and young children include them as a regular part
of their diet. However, nearly all fish and shellfish contain traces of
By following 3 recommendations for selecting and eating fish or shellfish,
women and young children will receive the benefits of eating fish and
shellfish and be confident that they have reduced their exposure to the
harmful effects of mercury.
Do not eat Shark, Swordfish, King Mackerel, or Tilefish because they contain
high levels of mercury.
Eat up to 12 ounces (2 average meals) a week of a variety of fish and
shellfish that are lower in mercury.
Five of the most commonly eaten fish that are low in mercury are shrimp,
canned light tuna, salmon, pollock, and catfish.
Another commonly eaten fish, albacore (¡°white¡±) tuna has more mercury
than canned light tuna. So, when choosing your two meals of fish and shellfish,
you may eat up to 6 ounces (one average meal) of albacore tuna per week.
Check local advisories about the safety of fish caught by family and friends
in your local lakes, rivers, and coastal areas. If no advice is available
eat up to 6 ounces (one average meal) per week of fish you catch from
local waters, but don¡¯t consume any other fish during that week.
Follow these same recommendations when feeding fish and shellfish to your
young children but serve smaller portions.
FDA continues to test fish and shellfish for mercury. Should there be
a significant change in the underlying science regarding the risks from
methylmercury or the benefits from fish, FDA and EPA will update the advisory
to ensure that the public is informed when making choices about the amounts
and types of fish to eat.
The complete 2004 FDA/EPA advisory, ¡°What You Need to Know About Mercury
in Fish and Shellfish,¡± can be found at www.cfsan.fda.gov/~dms/admehg3.html.
warns against canned tuna
Source of Article: http://www.ift.org/news_bin/news/news_home.shtml
6/06/2006-Consumer Reports magazine is warning pregnant women not to consume
canned tuna and to limit children's intake of the fish because of high
mercury levels in both white and light canned tuna. These recommendations
are more cautious than those put forward by the FDA, which says pregnant
women or children can eat up to 6 ounces of white, or albacore, tuna (which
is higher in mercury), and up to 12 ounces of canned light tuna.
According to Consumer Reports, in their review of FDA tests, six percent
of the light-tuna samples contained at least as much, and in some cases
more, mercury as white canned tuna.
For more information, see the Consumer Reports article: http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/food/tuna-safety/overview/0607_tuna_ov.htm
and the FDA Statement: http://www.fda.gov/bbs/topics/NEWS/2006/NEW01382.html
New Clue on Babies¡¯
Study: Adding Grains to Babies¡¯ Diet After Age 6 Months May Up Allergy
By Miranda Hitti
WebMD Medical News
Reviewed By Louise Chang, MD on Monday, June 05, 2006
Source of Article: http://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=62361
June 5, 2006 -- Babies who start eating grains after they¡¯re 6 months
old may be more likely to develop wheat allergies. Researchers report
that finding in June¡¯s issue of the journal Pediatrics.
¡°Delaying initial exposure to cereal grains until after 6 months may increase
the risk of developing wheat allergy ,¡± write Jill Poole, MD, and colleagues.
¡°Our results support continuing the current recommendations of first introducing
cereal products between 4 and 6 months of age.¡± Poole works in Denver
at the National Jewish Medical and Research Center¡¯s allergy and clinical
immunology division. She and her colleagues studied 1,612 children for
nearly five years, starting when the babies were newborns. None of the
babies had celiac disease, in which the body can¡¯t digest a protein called
gluten, which is found in various grains including wheat, rye, and barley.
The babies¡¯ parents completed surveys when the babies were 3, 6, 9, 12,
and 15 months old, and once a year after that. Survey topics included
any foods the babies had tried for the first time, when those items were
introduced to the babies¡¯ diets, babies¡¯ allergies, and whether those
allergies had been diagnosed by a doctor.
The researchers also tested the babies¡¯ blood several times for signs
of wheat allergies. The vast majority of babies didn¡¯t develop wheat allergies.
The study shows that wheat allergies were reported for 16 children, or
1% of the entire group. Only four children were found to have antibodies
in their blood specific to wheat; those antibodies are a sign of wheat
¡°Children who were first exposed to cereals after 6 months of age had
an increased risk of wheat allergy compared with children first exposed
to cereals before 6 months of age (after controlling for confounders including
a family history of allergic disorders and history of food allergy before
6 months of age),¡± the researchers write. Hardly any babies started eating
grains before turning 4 months old, so it¡¯s not clear exactly when before
6 months is the best time to introduce grains to babies¡¯ diets to help
avoid wheat allergies, the researchers note.
SOURCES: Poole, J. Pediatrics, June 2006; vol 117: pp 2175-2182. News
release, American Academy of Pediatrics.
KEY TO MEAT PRODUCTION
NORWAY: Meat Processing Global editor Chris Harris reports from the opening
of the International Dry Cured Meat Congress in Oslo, Norway.
Food safety is the major
factor that has to be monitored in producing food, Norway¡¯s Minister for
Agriculture and Food Terje Riis Johansen told the Third International
Dry Cured Meat Congress in Oslo, Norway, today. In
opening the congress, Johansen said that Norway had recently experienced
the unwelcome effects of a food-safety scare when one child died and several
fell ill from an E. coli outbreak traced back to a batch of dry cured
sausage. ¡°We have to
ensure consumer safety,¡± Johansen said. ¡°It has to be safety from the
farm to the table. We have to fight for food safety every day.¡± He
noted that rules and regulations were needed to ensure safety is maintained,
but there is also a need for the resources and an independent governing
body to ensure the regulations are kept, in order to maintain consumer
confidence. The First
International Dry Cured Meat Congress attracted more than 110 delegates
from 14 countries and 30 speakers to discuss the different production
methods for dry cured meat products and to explore ways to improve production
and ensure safe production of dry cured meat products.
Click here for more information
06/08. TX-San Antonio-Microbiologist
Director of Quality Control - Malden, MA
06/08. Mat'ls Supervisor, GMP, HAACP, QA - Harrisburg; Lebanon, PA
06/08. Category Quality Lead - Trumbull, CT
06/08. Quality Assurance Manager - Portales, NM
06/08. OR-Portland-QC Lab Technician
06/08. Quality Assurance Manager - Ogden, UT
06/08. Director of QA - assistant plant mgr - Jerome, ID
06/08. Quality Assurance Supervisor - EGV - Chicago, IL
06/08. Microbiology Technician - Atlanta, GA
06/08. Buyer/Purchasing Agent- Multi-line food dist - Los Angeles, CA
Safety Process for the Retail Food Service Ind
By: Marketwire Jun. 6, 2006 09:33 AM
Source of Article: http://www.sys-con.com/read/231494.htm
PRESCOTT, AZ -- (MARKET WIRE) -- 06/06/06 -- PRODUCE SAFETY AND SECURITY
INTERNATIONAL, INC. (PINKSHEETS: PDSC) ("PDSC"), an Ozone and
chemical sanitation disinfectant process supplier to the food and medical
industries, announces the signing of a definitive agreement to acquire
INNOVATIVE FOOD SYSTEMS, INC. (IFS) to become a wholly owned subsidiary
that will provide a complete Ozone Food Safety Process that has been proven
effective against the food-borne virus E.coli H157, Salmonella and Listeria
outbreaks for the Retail Food Service Industry. IFS has developed systems
for preserving and sanitizing perishable products for food various sectors,
including: Retail Grocery (Produce, Seafood, Deli, Meat, and Poultry Departments),
Restaurants, Institutions, and Schools. Clarence W. Karney, CEO of Produce
Safety & Security International, Inc., stated, "The principal
management of IFS brings over 45 years of diverse food experience to our
Company in addition to the Ozone Processes for the extension of Shelf-Life
and the prevention of Food-Borne Illness Outbreaks." Mr. Karney continues
by stating, "IFS has developed an extraordinary solution, the Aqueous-O3
System, for two of the most serious problems within the perishable food
industry: shelf life extension and the reduction of pathogens such as
Listeria, Salmonella, and E-coli 0157 H: 07."
2006 award recipients
June 5, 2006
IAFP News Release
Des Moines, Iowa The International Association for Food Protection (IAFP)
will present awards recognizing excellence in food safety to the following
organization and individuals at IAFP 2006, August 13-16, 2006 in Calgary,
The Black Pearl Award will be presented to Ecolab Inc., in recognition
of their outstanding achievement in corporate excellence in food safety
The Harry Haverland Citation Award will be presented to Gale Prince, The
Kroger Company, Cincinnati, Ohio, for his years of devotion to the ideals
and objectives of the Association.
Dr. Paul Hall, Matrix MicroScience Inc., Hawthorn Woods, Illinois is the
recipient of the Harold Barnum Industry Award. This awards recognizes
his outstanding service to IAFP, the public, and the food industry.
The Educator Award will be presented to Dr. Lee-Ann Jaykus, North Carolina
State University, Raleigh, North Carolina, to recognize her dedication
and exceptional contributions to the profession of the educator.
Jack Guzewich, FDA, College Park, Maryland, will be presented the Sanitarian
Award to recognize his dedication and exceptional service to the profession
of sanitation, serving the public and the food industry.
The Maurice Weber Laboratorian Award will be presented to Dr. Catherine
Donnelly, University of Vermont, Burlington, Vermont, to recognize her
service for outstanding contributions in the laboratory and recognizing
a commitment to the development of innovative and practical analytical
approaches in support of food safety.
The International Leadership Award will be presented to Dr. Christopher
Griffith, University of Wales Institute, Cardiff, Wales, United Kingdom,
for his dedication to the high ideals and objectives of IAFP and for promotion
of the mission of the Association in countries outside of the United States
Dr. Edward Mather, National Food Safety and Toxicology Center, Michigan
State University, East Lansing, Michigan, will receive the Food Safety
Innovation Award for developing the Professional Master of Science in
Food Safety degree through online study.
Atmosphere Packaging Using CO is Safe and Criticisms Unfounded,
Notes Guest Editorial
June 05, 2006
Source of Article: http://www.meatami.com/
¡°The claim that CO packaging
will result in unsafe products is not scientifically sound,¡± notes a joint
guest expert editorial in the April edition of Foodtechnology. The authors
note that recent media reports generated by private interests have raised
concerns about the use of carbon monoxide (CO) as a component in Modified
Atmosphere Packaging (MAP), and have attempted to garner public, and legislative
efforts to ban the innovative technology.
¡°CO is useful for fresh-meat
packaging because the gas binds with the muscle pigment myoglobin to produce
a bright red color,¡± sought after by consumers, note authors Drs. Joe
Sebranek (Iowa State University), Mel Hunt (Kansas State University),
Daren Cornforth (Utah State University) and Susan Brewer (University of
They note that one assault
against CO has included a petition to the FDA requesting they ban its
further use for meat packaging. The petition to FDA does not question
the safety of CO but claims that the practice is deceptive and will undermine
food safety. ¡°However, on at least three occasions, FDA has ruled that
CO is a colorless, odorless, ¡®invisible¡¯ gas and therefore can not directly
transfer color to meat,¡± they note.
They explain that the ability
of CO to promote longer lasting red color in meat has also been a chief
basis for its criticism. ¡°While it has been documented that CO-based meat
color can remain red even at high levels of bacterial growth, it is highly
unlikely that meat which is truly spoiled would be consumed, even if the
color was still red, because of the other warning signs such as odors
that accompany excessive bacterial growth,¡± they note.
The authors also address claims
that the technology will result in the unsafe products being sold and
consumed. They explain that there is no greater risk associated with bacteria
growth using CO technology than with any other packaging system. ¡°In fact,
a valid argument can be made that CO packaging creates opportunities to
increase safety. It is important to realize that the presence or absence
of bacteria of public health significance on meat is independent of meat
color,¡± they add.
They conclude that since the
safety of low CO packaging has been established, it would be appropriate
to ¡°let the marketplace decide the success or failure of the process.¡±
To see the full article go
Of The Infective Apparatus Of Salmonella
Main Category: Biology / Biochemistry News
Article Date: 04 Jun 2006 - 12:00pm (PDT)
Source of Article: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/medicalnews.php?newsid=44488&nfid=rssfeeds
In Salmonella, structural changes to the molecular infection apparatus
also signal an end to its further assembly. The mechanistic details of
this sophisticated feedback system, which takes place at molecular level,
have now been published in NATURE. Better understanding of how this pathogen's
needle-like secretion injectisome is formed will offer new approaches
to preventing the infection process in future. The results obtained by
the team of Thomas Marlovits, joint IMP-IMBA Group Leader and head of
the new "Spot of Excellence" at the Campus Vienna Biocenter,
have now been explained by using modern techniques of three-dimensional
cryo electron microscopy.
Salmonella cause typhoid fever
and food poisoning. One of the key structural features of the infection
process for this bacterium is the "type III secretion system"
(TTSS). This enables it to secrete bacterial proteins into the host cell.
The central component of this apparatus has a structure akin to that of
a hollow needle, whose length is crucial for the success of the infection
Dr. Thomas C. Marlovits, scientific
head of the new "Vienna Spot of Excellence", together with Prof.
Jorge E. Galan (Yale University, USA) and other colleagues from the USA,
has now explained how the exact length of the needle is determined during
the assembly of this biological nano-machine. Says Dr. Marlovits: "A
fine example of molecular multi-tasking, the TTSS is not only responsible
for transporting bacterial proteins into the host cell, but also for its
own assembly from some 200 individual structural proteins. The length
of the needle structure is controlled by a sophisticated mechanism. The
core of this mechanism is the change in the specificity of the TTSS for
different proteins. Although the TTSS still has a high specificity for
its own structural proteins during the initial phase of the assembly process,
this specificity changes later to handle the proteins that are important
for the actual infection process. A change in the structure of the TTSS
is crucial for this transformation."
In actual fact, the TTSS comprises
four important components: a base anchored into the bacterial membrane
with a socket-like structure, plus an overlying inner ring structure on
which the needle is built. Marlovits has now succeeded in demonstrating
that the ring structure firmly binds the needle with the socket-like structure
and the base. This bond also effects a structural change to the base,
which impacts on its ability to bind to proteins from the cytoplasmic
side of the cell. In this situation, the structural change acts as a signal
to indicate that the needle is finished. Instead of assembly proteins,
the proteins that are then transported are the ones required for the infection
Crucial for the impressive
results obtained by Marlovits and his team was the combination of high-resolution
imaging methods - cryo electron microscopy - with the molecular genetic
analysis of mutants that form unusually long needle structures. The team
knew that the protein InvJ influenced needle length - but how this influence
is exerted was not fully understood. Marlovits' comparison yielded a surprisingly
clear picture: the mutants lacked the inner ring structure completely.
Since these mutants are nevertheless able to form needle structures, and
indeed extremely long ones, it was suspected that the inner ring structure
provides a type of stop signal for the needle-building process - a signal
that the mutants lacked. Further analyses then showed further clear structural
differences between the bases of the wild types and those of the mutants.
Marlovits' hypothesis is now that this structural change influences the
binding of other proteins that are channelled via the TTSS - and thus
provides the stop signal for the needle-building process.
In addition to the basis for
further work on the infection channel, this stop signal hypothesis, published
in Nature, also represents an excellent starting signal for Marlovits
in the work just begun at the "Vienna Spot of Excellence" at
the Research Institute of Molecular Pathology (IMP) and the Institute
of Molecular Biotechnology (IMBA).
Original publication: Assembly
of the inner rod determines needle length in the type III secretion injectisome.
NATURE 441, 637-640 (1 June 2006) | doi:10.1038/nature04822
Graphics and 3-D animations
new research into killer E coli
June 4, 2006
Sunday Herald (Scotland)
Professor Hugh Pennington, Scotland's leading E coli expert, was cited
as calling on ministers to fund a targeted programme of research, focused
on animals, in a bid to help reduce the number of people struck down by
the potentially fatal bug.
Ten years ago, the world¡¯s worst E coli food poisoning outbreak saw 21
elderly people die in Wishaw, Lanarkshire. In the past month the bug,
often found in the guts of cows and sheep, was behind a spate of cases
linked to nurseries and a butcher¡¯s shop. But while experts know Scotland
has a far higher incidence of the bug than the rest of the UK and many
other European countries, they do not know why.
Food Safety System Verification Directive June 01, 2006
Source of Article: http://www.meatami.com/
The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) released Revision 2 of Directive
5000.1, Verifying an Establishment¡¯s Food Safety System. The directive
provides comprehensive direction to Consumer Safety Inspectors (CSIs)
on protecting public health by properly verifying an establishment¡¯s compliance
with pathogen reduction, sanitation and HACCP regulations.
The updated directive goes into effect July 3, 2006 and cancels Directive
5000.1, Revision 1.
To read the entire directive,
go to http://www.fsis.usda.gov/OPPDE/rdad/FSISDirectives/5000.1_Rev2.pdf
up yeasts, moulds testing
By staff reporter
Source of Article: http://www.foodproductiondaily.com/
07/06/2006 - A new method for determining the amount of yeasts and moulds
in food samples gets the job done within two days, speeding up the time
products can be released on the market.
As a means of ensuring the consistent taste and quality of their products,
food companies monitor yeast and mould levels to make sure that they fall
within regulatory and factory limits prior to leaving the plant. Although
yeasts and moulds do not normally cause human illness, high levels may
cause food products to spoil prematurely. This may cause the product to
look, smell or taste bad, thus diminishing or damaging consumers perceptions
of the brand. DuPont Qualicon says its new Bax system for yeast and mould
uses a DNA-based technology called polymerase chain reaction (PCR) provides
same day yeast and mould results for samples containing 500cfu/g (colony
forming units per gram) using a direct method. The test can yield results
in just two days for samples with 50-500cfu/g using an enrichment method.
"This is a considerable
time saving compared to current culture techniques, which can take five
to seven days to obtain a result," the company stated. The yeast
and mould screening procedures currently used by processors are culture-based,
taking up to at least five days to complete. The results are often difficult
to read accurately. Using the Bax enrichment method, a homogenised sample
is enriched for 44 hours in the equipment's disrupter tube. For both the
direct method and the enrichment method, a DNA stabiliser is added and
the tubes are agitated for 15 minutes prior to lysis and processing in
the Bax system cycler. After four hours, the system displays whether the
test show above threshold contamination or not. The target threshold is
set according to the action levels of each individual laboratory, validated
against historical plate counts for specific food products. The Bax System
assay detects both filamentous (hyphae) and non-filamentous fungi (yeasts
and spores), ensuring accurate results regardless of the stage in the
life-cycle of the target organisms. The system has been tested on a variety
of foods, including cheese and flour products, DuPont Qualicon stated.
AOAC-RI Validation for Quantitative Campylobacter Test
Thursday June 1, 7:00 am ET
Source of Article: http://biz.yahoo.com/cnw/060601/warnex_aoac_ri_valdtn.html?.v=1
- First Validated Quantitative
Real-Time PCR Test for Food Testing -
LAVAL, QC, June 1 /CNW/ - Warnex Inc. (TSX: WNX - News) today announced
that its quantitative Campylobacter test used with the Warnex(TM) Rapid
Pathogen Detection System has been granted Performance Tested(SM) status
by the AOAC Research Institute (Certificate No. 050603) and is the first
quantitative real-time PCR test available to the food industry to be AOAC-validated.
of this test marks a major achievement for Warnex and attests to the high
potential of our real-time PCR platform and to our scientific leadership
in the development of state-of-the-art pathogen detection tests for the
food industry," said Mark Busgang, President and CEO. "This
validation will enhance the commercial appeal of the Warnex platform for
our prospective clients as well as broaden the applicability of our system
for existing customers." The
AOAC Research Institute is a non-profit international scientific organization
that administers the Performance Tested Methods(SM) Program. Within this
program, an independent third-party review showed that the Warnex test
detected and quantified Campylobacter in poultry rinses as well as, or
better than traditional culture methods. With no enrichment required,
Warnex's Campylobacter test provides results within as little as 3 hours.According
to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Campylobacter
is one of the most common bacterial causes of diarrheal illness in the
United States, with an estimated 2.4 million cases every year. In addition
to diarrhea, Campylobacter infections cause cramping, abdominal pain,
and fever, and may occasionally cause a serious life-threatening infection
for persons with weakened immune systems. Warnex's Campylobacter test
detects and quantifies three species of this pathogen, Campylobacter jejuni,
C. coli and C. lari, which account for 99% of reported Campylobacter illness
The Warnex Rapid Pathogen
Detection System uses cutting-edge DNA-based technology to rapidly and
accurately determine the presence of pathogens in a sample. The system
allows for the simultaneous detection of multiple pathogens and processing
of samples within 3 to 48 hours, a significant improvement over traditional
microbiology tests that currently require 5 to 7 days.
Launches CampyFood ID, the First Culture Medium for Easy Detection of
souce from: http://www.rapidmicrobiology.com
bioMerieux announces a new innovation in food microbiology with CampyFood
ID, the first ready-to-use culture medium for easy detection of Campylobacter
in food products and environmental samples.
The innovation behind CampyFood ID
Conventional charcoal or blood media are not easily readable and make
the Campylobacter analysis complex and long. CampyFood ID is different
in that it is composed of a specific combination of a coloured indicator
with antibiotics. The colonies that form on the clear agar turn orange-red,
making it extremely easy to distinguish them.
Campylobacter and regulations
Although testing for Campylobacter is seldom required by regulations,
agri-food companies have a responsibility for adopting the safety measures
to be implemented in order to guarantee food safety. The European Food
Safety Authority (EFSA) recommends using a monitoring plan to reduce the
risk related to Campylobacter infection and a new ISO standard for the
detection of Campylobacter spp was recently issued (ISO 10272-1:2006).
Thanks to CampyFood ID, all
microbiology laboratories can now control this public health issue and
the levels of contamination in food and environmental samples in food
production and animal breeding facilities can finally be assessed.
bioMerieux, the first European manufacturer of ready-to-use culture media,
is confirming its food microbiology innovations strategy for the detection
of pathogenic bacteria.
Backed by extensive experience
in developing and manufacturing of a host of culture media, bioMerieux
offers a vast range of complex, chromogenic media that make microbiological
testing easier and more reliable:
for Developing Pathogen Diagnostics
souce from: http://www.rapidmicrobiology.com
Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen), in partnership with
the Northern Arizona University (NAU), is opening a new facility in Flagstaff,
Arizona dedicated to the development of pathogen diagnostics. The new
facility will be called TGen's Center for Pathogen Diagnostics, or TGen
North, and will focus on applying genomic technology and tools to biodefense,
pathogen diagnostics and microbial forensics, thereby continuing TGen's
mission of developing earlier diagnoses and smarter treatments. TGen North
will be led by nationally recognized biosafety expert Dr. Paul Keim, who
is currently the Director of the TGen's Pathogen Genomics Division and
is a professor of biology and Cowden Endowed Chair in Microbiology at
The new facility is an expansion
of Dr. Keim's work with highly-regulated pathogens. In June 2005, Dr.
Keim was appointed to the National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity
(NSABB), a group of 25 experts who will assess issues of biosafety in
life sciences research. Dr. Keim's current work includes several projects
funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the first
of which aims to improve the understanding and management of sepsis and
community acquired pneumonia (CAP). This multi-year project is expected
to further progress toward more rapid and accurate tools for treating
patients afflicted by these deadly pathogens.
The new Center is funded by
multiple federal agencies that support medical diagnostics, forensic analyses
and biodefense-related work including the Department of Defense, Department
of Justice, the National Institutes of Health, the Department of Homeland
Security and others.
In 2002, the Flinn Foundation
funded a comprehensive study by the Battelle Memorial Institute that outlined
a 10-year roadmap to "fast track" Arizona on a path to achieve
national bioscience stature and a diversified economy. The study highlighted
Arizona's existing research strengths and emphasized the need for increased
public- and private-sector collaboration.
The launch of TGen North in Flagstaff is significant step for both establishing
a biosciences corridor in Arizona and furthering economic development
Construction of the new facility
is about to begin and TGen North and is due to open in the fall of 2006