Food Safety NewsLetter - FoodHACCP.com
Issue 33
12/16/2002

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FOOD SAFETY ISSUES TO BE TACKLED
December 11, 2002
Source from :MeatNews.com
http://www.meatnews.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=Article&artNum=4509
Australian Government warns of future threats to food safety.
Australia must not become complacent in its thinking about emerging threats
to food safety despite an excellent track record, Parliamentary Secretary to
the Minister for Health and Ageing, Trish Worth, warned this week.
Ms Worth, speaking at the 2nd Fellows Symposium of Food Standards Australia
New Zealand (FSANZ) at Old Parliament House in Canberra, said new food
safety issues had been identified that needed to be tackled.
The key areas identified include:
Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathies (BSE) in cattle;
chemical carcinogens in foods (eg chloropropanols and possibly acrylamide);
the growing propensity of manufacturers to add non-culinary herbs and other
complementary medicines to foods;
increasing levels of allergies in our population
(particularly in children); and
the growing level of overweight and obesity.
"A relatively small body like FSANZ cannot - and should not - address these
issues alone," Ms Worth said.
"I am pleased that continuing work is being done by FSANZ to develop its
relations with counterpart overseas regulators and with international bodies
such as the World Health Organisation. The continuing emergence of threats
to the safety of the food supply also underlines the importance of the FSANZ
Fellows programme."
Ms Worth said the FSANZ Fellows is comprised of representatives from
Australia and New Zealand, distinguished in areas of science and other
disciplines, who provide advice and assistance to the FSANZ Board and staff.
Ten Fellows were appointed in 2000 for a term of three years. A further four
Fellows have recently been appointed by the FSANZ Board. They are: Professor
Jeff Borland (University of Melbourne), Dr Martin Cole (Food Science
Australia), Professor John McNeil (Monash University) and Professor Roger
Morris (Massey University, New Zealand).
Ms Worth also welcomed the transition on 20 December, to the Australia New
Zealand Food Standards Code as a harmonised set of food standards for
Australia and New Zealand, which will provide substantial improvements over
the existing regulations.
"The wide-scale removal of unnecessary prescriptive requirements provides
much greater flexibility and capacity for innovation in the food industry,"
Ms Worth said.
"The new standards include major labelling initiatives which will give
consumers an unprecedented amount of information about their foods to allow
them to choose healthier diets and to make better informed food choices.


BE CAREFUL WITH GIFTS OF FOOD

Source from North Shore News
The holidays are, according to this story, a dangerous time for food safety.
When cooks look for ways to get a headstart on the cooking -- by cutting a
few corners to save preparation time, or leaving food out on the buffet for too long -- they run the risk of introducing unsafe bacteria to their dishes. The story says that the Food Safety Info Line, based in Alberta, offers many tips for safe holiday preparations, including: Eggnog made with fresh eggs should be consumed the day it's prepared (that's risky -- dp) while store-bought eggnog made with pasteurized eggs keeps longer. Use the Best Before date as a guide. Dry and moist ingredients for stuffing can be prepared a day ahead and refrigerated separately to stuff into poultry or a crown pork roast just before roasting. It's unsafe to partially cook food and finish cooking later. Be careful when giving gifts of food. Antipasto is a perennial favorite, but can only be stored in the refrigerator safely for 10 days. Label accordingly or freeze for longer storage. Flavoured oils are a risky gift (really risky -- dp). Freshly made, they keep only two to three days in the refrigerator.

Food Safety General News
12/13. FOODBORNE DISEASE IN THE NEW MILLENNIUM: OUT OF THE FRYING P
12/13. PUFFER FISH POISONING: A POTENTIALLY LIFE-THREATENING CONDIT
12/13. Congressman asks to see USDA's reports on Wampler
12/13. Wampler responds to plant inspector's allegations
12/13. CRUISING TO HANDWASHING WOES
12/13. OF BIRDS AND BACTERIA
12/13. IAFP 2003 TO BE HELD IN NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA
12/13. GEORGIA AG. DEPT. FINDS ILLEGAL MINI-GEL CANDIES
12/13. EC RELAXES RESTRICTIONS ON SOME CHINESE FISHERY IMPORTS
12/13. PUBLIC HEALTH INVESTIGATION OF SALMONELLA ENTERITIDIS IN RAW
12/13. SALMONELLA ENTERITIDIS IN EGGS IMPORTED TO NORWAY
12/13. NCBA Files E. coli Comments
12/13. IRRADIATED FOOD LIST SET TO BE EXPANDED: HEALTH CANADA BEGIN
12/13. CDC MMWR TELECONFERNCE - UPDATE ON CDC OUTBREAK INVESTIGATI 12/13. SICK KIDS OFFERS ADVICE FOR FAMILIES DEALING WITH VOMITING A
12/13. CHINA-SCHOOL POISONING
12/13. REGINA RESTAURANT FACING LAWSUIT
12/13. Big Island pond sign to warn of danger
12/13. Ships' woes a boon to Biosafety -
12/13. Health Canada panel debates irradiating food
12/13. GMA offers inside look at irradiation
12/13. Bronson appoints food security officer
12/13. Paper trail linked to meat safety
12/13. Britons May Face New Wave of Mad Cow Deaths
12/12. FOCUS ON DIET, NOT CARCINOGENS IN FRIED, STARCHY FOODS
12/12. BSE CONTROLS BREACHED
12/12. APPLICATION DEADLINE FOR AAAS PUBLIC POLICY OPPORTUNITIES ON
12/12. $2,500 FINE LEVIED UNDER PROVINCIAL MEAT INSPECTION ACT
12/12. FOOD SAFETY ISSUES TO BE TACKLED
12/12. PERSPECTIVE BY EDITOR CHRIS HARRIS
12/12. Federal inspector said Wampler's sanitation leak might have
12/12. Tyson, NCC respond to Consumer Reports' poultry antibiotic s
12/12. State and federal officials approved chicken that sickened I -
12/12. Two BSE offspring enter the food chain
12/12. US report suggests antibiotics are safe
12/12. Meat-recall reward sought
12/12. 'Consumer Reports' Sheds Little Light on Antibiotic Resistan
12/12. Parents protest U.S. schools irradiated meat plan
12/12. Test shows livestock antibiotic staying in soil
12/12. Food Safe, Inc. Selects Marathon Products, Inc. to Supply Te
12/12. EFSA budget - a step backwards for food safety?
12/12. Inspector: Poultry plant warnings ignored
12/12. China arrests two on charges they put rat poison in school f
12/11. BE CAREFUL WITH GIFTS OF FOOD
12/11. A CORONER'S INQUEST WILL BE HELD NEXT YEAR INTO THE DEATH OF
12/11. STATEMENT OF THE AMERICAN MEAT INSTITUTE ON FINAL FSIS DIREC
12/11. Cheese Maker Fined for Not Labeling Ingredient Change
12/11. FSIS offers key update on foreign material contamination pol
12/11. Meat Hygiene Service Audit Results Published
12/11. Govt warns of future food safety threats
12/11. Plant's Sanitation May Have Link to Deadly Bacteria
12/11. CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICER OF HEALTH URGES ONTARIANS TO PROTECT T
12/11. RUSSIA OBJECTS TO US POULTY IMPORTS, THREATENING NEW TRADE R
12/11. RUSSIA OBJECTS TO US POULTY IMPORTS, THREATENING NEW TRADE R
12/11. Report points way on food labeling issues
12/11. New Zealand: Dodgy kahawai recalled
12/11. Drug-Resistant Bacteria Often Present in Chicken & Turkey
12/11. A Plague on the Plains

Salmonella cases linked to eatery

http://www.idahostatesman.com/News/story.asp?ID=27845
The Central District Health Department has received 11 confirmed reports of salmonella cases, the department said Wednesday. Of those cases, 10 are associated with dining at Eddies restaurant, 7067 Overland Road in Boise between Nov. 27 and Dec. 5, the health department said.
Health department investigators have met with the restaurant management and trained employees on food handling and cross-contamination prevention, according to Dieuwke Spencer, health department epidemiology supervisor. The management and employees of the restaurant have been very cooperative and very concerned with the health and safety of their customers,?Spencer said. Although the department worked with the restaurant to prevent future infections, it is possible more people are ill and do not realize they have been infected, Spencer said.

People who have not been sick enough to seek medical care can unknowingly infect others, Spencer said. Salmonella symptoms can occur six to 72 hours after being infected and can last several days. Symptoms include nausea, headache, abdominal cramps, vomiting, diarrhea and fever.

Spencer said anyone experiencing such symptoms for an extended period of time should seek medical treatment.

Salmonella is primarily transmitted through contaminated food. To prevent salmonella, people should wash their hands repeatedly when preparing and handling food, not use raw eggs in beverages or ice cream and never cross-contaminate food or food-preparation surfaces with raw eggs or raw poultry, Spencer said.

Troops in Kuwait treated for food poisoning

Source: http://www.marinecorpstimes.com/
KUWAIT CITY ?Some 271 U.S. military personnel have been treated for food poisoning after eating at a camp south of Kuwait City, and two of them are hospitalized, an American military spokesman said Wednesday.
The soldiers, sailors and Marines were treated Monday for symptoms of food poisoning at the Oraifijan installation and released back to work within 24 hours,?Sgt. First Class David Dismukes said.
We dont know at this point what it is,?Dismukes told The Associated Press, declining to say if terrorism was suspected. He said laboratory test results were expected later Wednesday.
Only two have been admitted to the Kuwait Armed Forces Hospital for further evaluation,?he said, declining to provide any further information about their condition.
U.S. contractor Brown and Root provides food to the facility, about 35 miles south of Kuwait City. The company also does cleaning and general labor, Dismukes said.
There are around 12,000 U.S. military in Kuwait, a major ally of Washington in the Gulf. Most are involved in exercises under a defense pact signed after the 1991 Gulf War that liberated Kuwait from a seven-month Iraqi occupation.
A Marine was killed and a second was wounded Oct. 8 when two Kuwaiti Muslim fundamentalists opened fire on a group of Marines taking a break from training on the island of Failaka. Other Marines killed the attackers. On Nov. 21, a Kuwaiti policeman shot and seriously injured two U.S. soldiers after stopping their car on a highway.
Kuwait could become a launching pad for a U.S. attack on Iraq if the United Nations approves.

ON-Line Slides

Preharvest water and Food Safety
obtained from UC Davis (UCgaps) - http://ucgaps.ucdavis.edu (Trevor V. Suslow, Ph.D.)
Click here to see the slides (PDF file)

Food Safety and Sanitation for Fruit Packers workshop
obtained from PSU Food Safety website - http://foodsafety.cas.psu.edu
Presentations:
Introduction
Microorganisms of Concern in Agriculture
Food Safety Systems
Water
Cross Contamination
Handwashing Facilities, etc.
Postharvest Diseases
Federal-State Inspection Service

Mushroom Sanitation Workshop Review
obtained from PSU Food Safety website
- http://foodsafety.cas.psu.edu
Presentations:
Cold Storage Sanitation - Trevor Suslow, UCDavis
Hand Sanitation - Trevor Suslow, UCDavis
ORP Basics Mushroom Workshop - Trevor Suslow, UCDavis
Basic Microbiology - Linda Harris, UCDavis
Pathogen Testing - Linda Harris, UCDavis
Food Safety Systems - Luke LaBorde, Penn State
Key Sanitation Areas - Luke LaBorde, Penn State
1. Safety of Water
2. Cleaning and Sanitizing Food Contact Surfaces
3. Cross-Contamination
4. Maintenance of Handwashing, Hand Sanitizing, and Toilet Facilities
5. Protection from Adulterants
6. Proper Labeling, Storage, and Use of Toxic Compounds
7. Employee Health Conditions
8. Pest Control

- Biosecurity Challenges: An Industry Perspective
obtained from Meatscience.org

- Prevalence of Escherichia coli O157:H7 in Cattle and During Processing
obtained from Meatscience.org

- HACCP for Food Service Employees

- HACCP Video

- Sanitation Control Procedure Course

OUTBREAK NEWS
12/13. GASTROINTESTINAL FLU ON CAMPUS
12/13. GIANTS HIT BY NORWALK VIRUS: SEVEN PLAYERS FORCED TO MISS GA
12/12. Salmonella cases linked to eatery
12/12. Mass poisoning in Vietnam
12/12. Troops in Kuwait treated for food poisoning
12/11. 250 U.S. MILITARY IN KUWAIT SICKENED


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Food Safety Magazine
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Recall News

12/13. GEORGIA AG. DEPT. FINDS ILLEGAL MINI-GEL CANDIES
12/13. L¡¯ABBAYE ST BENOIT BRAND CHEESE may contain dangerous bacteria
12/13. INGLIS CENTURY FARM SWEET CIDER may contain high levels of patulin
12/13. Jasper Products Issues Allergy Alert on Undeclared Dairy Protein in Store Brand Soymilk
12/13. Jasper Products Has Recalled Store Brand Soymilk Dec 13
12/13. Georgia Firm Has Recalled Chicken Dec 12
12/13. Florida Firm Has Recalled Pork Sausage Products Dec 12
12/13. Florida Firm Recalls Pork Sausage Products For Possible Listeria Contamination
12/13. Georgia Firm Recalls Chicken For Possible Contamination With Plastic
12/12. ALLERGY ALERT - Undeclared sulphites in DURRA apricot paste
12/12. Consumer Alert: Undeclared Eggs in Bagels
12/12. Gotta Getta Bagel Has Recalled Extra Large Challah" bagels Dec 12
12/12. Golden Dynasty Trading Has Recalled "Gold Chinese Products Dried Plum" Dec 11
12/11. New Zealand: Dodgy kahawai recalled
12/11. ALLERGY ALERT - Undeclared soy protein in B & A BAKERY Products
12/11. Consumer Alert: Undeclared Sulfites in Dried Plum
12/11. Mon Chong Loong Trading Corp. Issues Allergy Alert on Undeclared Sulfites
12/11. Blooming Import Has Recalled PINEAPPLE TANGERINE CANDY Dec 11
12/11. Vigo Importing Has Recalled ALESSI brand Sun Dried Tomatoes Dec 11


USDA/FDA News
U.S. Codex Office "What's New" Page: Updated December 13, 2002
FSIS Constituent Update/Alert: Updated December 9, 2002
Improving the Recall Process
Improving the Recall Process: Related Documents
Microbial Sampling of RTE Products for FSIS Verification Testing Programs
Microbial Sampling of Ready to Eat (RTE) Products for the FSIS Verification Testing Program
OPPD (Policy) What's New Page: Updated December 9, 2002

New Method

Title: Ships' woes a boon to Biosafety
BY PATRICK DANNER
pdanner@herald.com
Source:http://www.miami.com/mld/
KILLER CLEANSER: Biosafety CEO Heinz Niedermaier, left, and President Kenneth Rush are predicting sales of about $400,000 for the year. CANDACE WEST / Herald Staff.
The stomach virus that's recently plagued cruise ships has caused headaches for cruise-line executives and bellyaches for many of their passengers, but it's been anything but a nuisance for Sunrise's Biosafety USA.
The fledgling company has been supplying some of the cruise lines with Virkon, a white powder with a lemon scent that when mixed with warm water acts as a cleanser and disinfectant.
''It kills 580 viruses, bacteria, fungi and spores,'' said Heinz J. Niedermaier, Biosafety's chief executive. Besides stopping the Norwalk-like virus, Virkon prevents the spread of smallpox, Hepatitis, salmonella and E. coli, according to Biosafety.
Biosafety secured the rights to exclusively distribute the product, produced in the United Kingdom by Antec International, in the United States in February. It wasn't until August that Biosafety received its first shipment -- two 40-foot containers holding a total of about 25 tons.
After outbreaks of the serious stomach virus began infecting hundreds of cruise-ship passengers last month, demand for Virkon took off. Disney Cruise Line and Holland America Line, which both had to deal with sick passengers, used Virkon to clean and disinfect ships. Ship workers scrubbed tables, chairs, railings and other fixtures with the yellow liquid. The number of cruise ships using Virkon stands at 54, Niedermaier said.
''We were overwhelmed by the speed of the orders,'' said Kenneth P. Rush, Biosafety's president. The outbreak ``forced people to look at the product more carefully and recognize its qualities. Had the outbreak not occurred, obviously it would have taken longer.''
Sales through the end of the year were originally projected to be about $68,000 for Biosafety. Now, though, Biosafety said its sales will be about $400,000 for the year. And the $8 million in sales projected for next year has been scrapped; it hasn't revised projections yet.
Biosafety sells Virkon in four different sizes, ranging from a box with 100 10-gram packets that sells for $144 to a 5-kilogram can priced at $165. Virkon works as a 1 percent solution, or one part Virkon to 100 parts water.
Representatives for Disney and Holland America confirmed they have used Virkon, but the Disney spokesman said it only used Virkon once and not since. He didn't know why Disney isn't using it anymore. Carnival Cruise Lines doesn't use Virkon, relying instead on a chlorine bleach-based solution and a sanitizing liquid known as Micro Bac II, made by Ecolab of St. Paul, Minn.
Joan Dougherty, president of AA Trauma, a Margate-based bio-hazard cleanup company, learned about Virkon while assisting with the scrub-down of cruise ships.
''We've used it, and I like it a lot,'' Dougherty said. ``This stuff is wonderful. It doesn't seem to create problems for the different surfaces.''
Virkon has advantages over other cleaning solutions, Niedermaier said. Unlike a mixture of water and chlorine, which he said begins to degrade after 20 minutes, Virkon remains effective for a week once it's mixed with water. The powder has a shelf life of three years. And Virkon can be used on ''soft surfaces'' like carpets and upholstery without causing damage, he said.
''It's kind to the environment, it's kind to people, but it's really effective,'' said Jeannette Hameder, director of Antec's human-health division in Velden, Austria.
Virkon was created by Hameder's father, European chemist Thomas Auchincloss, in the early 1980s as a biosecurity measure in dealing with diseases that strike farm animals, like foot and mouth. Niedermaier was childhood friends in Austria with Hameder's husband, Herbert Hameder, and followed Virkon's development closely.
While Virkon was developed for use with animals, Antec saw an opportunity to expand its use with humans, Hameder said.
''Our first efforts were concentrated in the hospital market, were infections were a problem and they needed a disinfectant they could use throughout the hospital,'' she said.
Niedermaier said he assisted Antec gratis in getting Environmental Protection Agency approval to use Virkon as a cleaner and disinfectant in the United States. That happened in 1998, but Antec was too busy handling demand from other markets around the globe to find a distributor in the United States.
After Niedermaier lost his job when American Classic Voyage went bankrupt, he began entertaining the idea of becoming Virkon's U.S. distributor. He approached Rush and Peter Novick, who co-own Benham Security Systems, about joining him. The trio developed a business plan and pooled $1 million to land the distribution rights. Novick serves as Biosafety's chairman.
There are a variety of commercial and institutional uses for Virkon, Niedermaier said, including schools, hospitals, laboratories and food-processing plants. Biosafety eventually wants to snare 10 percent of the $3 billion disinfectant market. That doesn't include the household market, which Biosafety hopes it will one day get approval to market.
''We're not a better Lysol,'' Rush said. ''We're a new category'' of disinfectant.

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