12/25,2012
ISSUE:528

                       


  Seats are limited. Reserve your spot today!!

Comprehensive News List
General Food Safety News/ Outbreak News/ Recall News/ New Methods News/
USDA/FDA News
/ On-Line Slides/ Job Information/Internet Journal of Food Safety


China to Tackle Food Safety Violations
Source : http://english.cri.cn/6909/2012/12/31/191s741255.htm
By Luo Dan (Dec 31, 2012)
Chinese government will take strong measures against companies that break food safety regulations to ensure "healthy" New Year holiday and the Spring Festival that falls in mid February next year.
The authorities will implement harsher punishments for food producers that make counterfeit products and sell adulterated or expired food, according to an announcement released Sunday by the food safety office under the State Council, or China's Cabinet.
It also urged local inspectors to intensify their efforts to ensure the safety of grain products, meat, infant food, alcoholic beverages and edible gifts during the holidays.
The Spring Festival is one of the most important traditional holidays in China and is likely to see huge transaction volume in food trade, as people always arrange banquets to celebrate family reunion and entertain guests. 

The Worst Raw Milk E. coli Outbreak of 2012
Source : http://www.foodpoisonjournal.com/foodborne-illness-outbreaks/the-worst-raw-milk-e-coli-outbreak-of-2012/
By Bruce Clark (Dec 30, 2012)
As of April 20, 2012, the Foundation Farm raw milk-associated Escherichia coli O157:H7 outbreak has sickened 19 persons. Of these 11 have culture-confirmed E. coli O157 infections; 15 of the 19 cases are in children <19 years of age. Four children have been hospitalized with kidney failure. Subtyping results of the E. coli O157 isolates revealed matches for eight of the human cases (three others pending); 10 samples of animal manure; two cattle rectal swabs; one swab of the milking station; and one sample of the raw milk itself.
On April 10, 2012, Multnomah County Health Department received a report of a case of hemolytic-uremic syndrome (HUS) in a 1ó year old child admitted to a Portland-area hospital. Interviews with the family revealed that the child had drunk raw milk. Foundation Farm in Clackamas County produced the raw milk, which the family had obtained through a cow-share program.
Foundation Farm provided the Oregon Public Health Division with contact information for 48 shareholder households. State and local health department staff were able to reach 30 households, representing 91persons, and collected information about recent (since mid-March) Foundation Farm milk consumption, other possible food exposures, and diarrheal illness in household members.
As of April 20, 2012, a total of 19 persons report having been sickened; of these 11 have culture confirmed E. coli O157 infections; 15 of the 19 cases are in children <19 years of age. Four children have been hospitalized with kidney failure and HUS. The only common food item that all cases reported consuming was raw milk produced by Foundation Farm; none of the other food items reported were consumed by all the cases; and the households reported buying their food from a variety of stores.
On April 11, Oregon Public Health Division (OPHD) and Oregon Department of Agriculture staff visited Foundation Farm to collect samples for testing, including from animal manure, environmental surfaces, and rectal swabs from the four cows. Leftover raw milk samples were collected on April 12 and 13 from two shareholder households for testing. All specimens positive for E. coli O157 were subtyped using pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE). PFGE results show a single molecular pattern for eight of the human cases (three others are pending). The same molecular type was identified in samples from the farm (10 animal manure; two cattle rectal swabs; one swab of the milking station) and from one from the leftover milk samples recovered from a case-household.
For more information about the risks of raw milk, see www.realrawmilkfacts.com.

USDA issues final animal-disease traceability rule
Source : http://www.iowafarmertoday.com/news/livestock/usda-issues-final-animal-disease-traceability-rule/article_3dca1fae-5127-11e2-847c-0019bb2963f4.html
By IowaIarmerToday (Dec 21, 2012)
WASHINGTON, D.C. — A final rule establishing general regulations for improving the traceability of U.S. livestock moving interstate was announced Dec. 20 by the USDA.
Unless specifically exempt, livestock moved interstate would have to be officially identified and accompanied by an interstate certificate of veterinary inspection or other documentation, such as owner-shipper statements or brand certificates, according to a news release.
After considering the public comments received, the final rule has several differences from the proposed rule issued in August 2011. These include:
•Accepting the use of brands, tattoos and brand registration as official identification when accepted by the shipping and receiving states or tribes;
•permanently maintaining the use of backtags as an alternative to official eartags for cattle and bison moved directly to slaughter;
•accepting movement documentation other than an Interstate Certificate of Veterinary Inspection for all ages and classes of cattle when accepted by the shipping and receiving states or tribes;
•clarifying livestock moved interstate to a custom slaughter facility are exempt from the regulations; and
•exempting chicks moved interstate from a hatchery from the official identification requirements
More details about the rule and how it will affect producers: www.aphis.usda.gov/traceability.
Beef cattle under 18 months of age, unless they are moved interstate for shows, exhibitions, rodeos, or recreational events, are exempt from the official identification requirement in this rule. These specific traceability requirements for this group will be addressed in separate rulemaking, allowing APHIS to work closely with industry to ensure the effective implementation of the identification requirements.

More Holiday Food Safety Advice from the FDA
Source : http://foodpoisoningbulletin.com/2012/more-holiday-food-safety-advice-from-the-fda/
By Linda Larsen (Dec 30, 2012)
The FDA is offering holiday food safety advice to help keep you and your family safe and healthy during the season. They have several food safety videos, a food safety success kit, and information about ready-to-cook foods, and general tips.
If you are hosting a party or a meal for anyone in a high risk group, it’s critical that you are very careful about food safety. Those people include older adults, infants, young children, pregnant women, people with any chronic illness such as HIV/AIDS and cancer, and those who take medication to suppress their immune systems. Following the four basic food safety measures to the letter can help prevent foodborne illness.
Always keep everything clean, separate foods to avoid cross-contamination, cook foods to a safe final internal temperature, and chill perishable foods quickly. Foods should not be left out of refrigeration longer than two hours. Add make sure your fridge’s temperature is 40 degrees F or lower.
Undercooked and uncooked eggs may be served this time of year. Avoid undercooked and uncooked eggs. If you have an old family recipe that uses uncooked eggs, you may be able to update it by adding eggs to the liquid called for in a recipe, then heating that mixture to 165 degrees F. This will kill bacteria but the eggs will still work in the recipe.
And be sure that any dairy you serve during the holidays is pasteurized. Check the label before you buy. Those in high risk groups, especially pregnant women and the elderly, can become very ill from Listeria, E. coli, and Salmonella that may be found in unpasteurized products.

2012 Fresh Produce Food Safety News
Source : http://www.thepacker.com/fruit-vegetable-news/marketing-profiles/2012-Fresh-Produce-Food-Safety-News-185058101.html
By Dan Galbraith (Dec 28, 2012)
Fresh produce-related food safety news from 2012:
JANUARY
Green Valley Food Corp., Dallas, has expanded a recall tenfold, adding onion sprouts and spicy alfalfa sprouts to the plain alfalfa sprouts initially recalled because of possible salmonella contamination ... Growers Express’ decision to pull iceberg lettuce from the market after a nearby field tested positive for salmonella appears to be an unprecedented food safety step, but many peers agreed with the company’s “abundance of caution.” ... California cantaloupe growers appear poised to adapt mandatory food safety regulations in existing melon marketing orders ... Citrus greening, the disease causing significant crop losses in Florida, has been found in Texas ...
FEBRUARY
An E. coli outbreak linked to sprouts served at the Jimmy John’s Gourmet Sandwiches chain has sickened 12 people in five states ... Government and research groups have established the Sprouts Safety Alliance to tackle what the Food and Drug Administration calls the “unique safety risk” of sprouts ...
MARCH
Mexico’s food safety program is designed to be compatible with U.S. safety acts and other international standards ...
APRIL
Canadian PACA-like protection may be two years away ... Research has again proven the 1999 government-recommended process for sanitizing sprouts is inadequate ... Government officials say a listeria-related sprout recall by Henry’s Farm Inc. is hampered because the sprouts were sent to retailers and foodservice operations without lot codes or other traceable labeling ...
MAY
California growers back mandatory regulation for cantaloupe safety ... Salinas, Calif.-based River Ranch Fresh Foods LLC has expanded its voluntary recall of bagged salads to include some retail products with best-by dates up to May 29 ... Produce suppliers waiting for a total of more than $16 million from Birmingham, Ala.-based Adams Produce LLC should have a better idea of how likely they are to be paid after a May 31 hearing in the company’s $20 million bankruptcy case ...
JUNE
A false positive result for E. coli in random testing of salad at a Florida restaurant proved costly for Taylor Farms California Inc. after it issued and then cancelled a voluntary recall ... Holly, Colo.-based Jensen Farms filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization ... Armed with new research showing some consumers are shying away from consuming fresh produce because of pesticide residue concerns, the Alliance for Food and Farming called on the Environmental Working Group to cease publication of its Dirty Dozen list …
JULY
Even with farm bill provisions, insurance for recall protection is still considered a longshot ...
AUGUST
A Government Accountability Office report urges the FDA to clarify recall protocol ... The FDA finds listeria at Burch Farms’ packing shed and cites “unsanitary conditions” ... Listeria on equipment spurs a recall of apple slices Missa Bay LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Ready Pac Foods Inc., Sweedesboro, N.J. ... The recall of Chamberlain Farms cantaloupe linked to a salmonella outbreak hit other Indian growers hard when customers took a guilt-by-association approach to buying because the specific grower wasn’t named for six days ... Federal officials believe mangoes as a likely cause of a salmonella outbreak reaching 16 states; Daniella-branded mangoes are pulled from stores in the U.S. and Canada ... Chamberlain Farms cantaloupe tests positive for salmonella ...
SEPTEMBER
The Kroger Co. voluntarily recalled bagged spinach in 15 states after it had expired because of possible listeria contamination ...
OCTOBER
Chamberlain Farms officials deny any link to cantaloupe outbreak ... The FDA suggests the food industry should help fund food safety law ... The Center for Disease Control and Prevention calls the Chamberlain Farms cantaloupe outbreak finally over, with three people dead and sicknesses reported in 20 states ...
NOVEMBER
Barack Obama’s re-election spurs talk that food safety changes may be on the way sooner than later ... The Microbiological Data Program is in shutdown mode after 11 years of gathering facts about foodborne pathogens; budget cuts are blamed.

Food Safety and the Educated Consumer
Source : http://www.foodproductdesign.com/news/2012/12/food-safety-and-the-educated-consumer.aspx
By FoodProductDesign (Dec 28, 2012)
LAS VEGAS—With all the conflicting research, sensational reporting, rumors and deliberate mischaracterization about today’s foods bombarding today’s consumers, no wonder they are confused about food safety. How many of members of the general public currently think that words they can’t pronounce and scientific concepts they can’t understand equate with a clear and present danger? A little education might prove to be the road that leads to a better understanding of food safety.
Based on the International Food Information Council’s (IFIC) 2012 Food and Health Survey, Catherine Adams Hutt, PhD, RD, RdR Solutions & Sloan Trends, said that three out of 4 consumers are confident in the safety of the U.S. food supply in the “Food Safety and Consumer Messaging," educational session at SupplySide West 2012. They trust themselves the most when it comes to ensuring safe food and the majority believe the chances they will get a foodborne illness are extremely low. However, the majority do not know that food processing and additives can help ensure safety.
However, there seems to be an outsized concern about “chemicals’ in food due to viral anecdotal accounts, media, advocacy and regulatory attention, and lack of publicly available research, which Adams Hutt calls “the perfect storm." Research has found that, among moms, marketing tactics is one of the factors that contribute to their negative perceptions about chemicals in food and that these negative associations result in guilt, fear and eventual anger. IFIC found that while things like taste, value, healthfulness and convenience are important, 40% to 50% pay attention to chemical issues. But they want to know more.
To ensure consumers get a credible message, there are some “guiding principles" for communication. These include: using the best language, Including support, citing the most relevant sources, considering past relationships, emphasizing the benefits and turning to credible experts for opinions. Adams Hutt suggested choosing your words carefully as negative concepts are more likely to evoke fear and uncertainty
Adams Hutt reviewed the best practices for effective risk and crisis communication: plan ahead, communicate responsibly and minimize harm. She recommended updating your company’s crises plans regularly and performing a case study to develop an effective message that incorporates strategic issue management so the message is clear, quick and credible.
“Be assured that we can win with consumers if we use these best practices and convey confidence and management of risks," said Adams Hutt. The key, she said, is: “Make it Simple. Make it personal."

Why US Food Safety is Important – Salmonella Cantaloupe
Source : http://www.marlerblog.com/legal-cases/why-us-food-safety-is-important-salmonella-cantaloupe/
By Bill Marler (Dec 28, 2012)
261 Ill, 3 Deaths, 94 Hospitalizations in 24 States
CDC collaborated with public health officials in many states and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to investigate a multi-state outbreak of Salmonella Typhimurium and Salmonella Newport infections linked to cantaloupe originating from Chamberlain Farms Produce, Inc. of Owensville, Indiana.
Public health investigators used DNA “fingerprints” of Salmonella bacteria obtained through diagnostic testing with pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) to identify cases of illness that may be part of this outbreak.  They used data from PulseNet, the national subtyping network made up of state and local public health laboratories and federal food regulatory laboratories that performs molecular surveillance of foodborne infections.
A total of 261 individuals infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Typhimurium and Salmonella Newport were reported from 24 states:  Alabama (25), Arkansas (6), Florida (1), Georgia (13), Illinois (36), Indiana (30), Iowa (9), Kentucky (66), Maryland (1), Michigan (8), Minnesota (2), Mississippi (7), Missouri (17), Montana (1), New Jersey (2), North Carolina (5), Ohio (5), Oklahoma (1), Pennsylvania (2), South Carolina (4), Tennessee (8), Texas (2), Virginia (1), and Wisconsin (9).
Among 257 persons for whom information was available, illness onset dates ranged from July 6, 2012 to September 16, 2012.  Ill persons ranged in age from less than 1 year to 100 years, with a median age of 47 years.  Fifty-five percent (55%) of ill persons were female.  Among 163 persons with available information, 84 (51%) reported being hospitalized.  Three deaths were reported in Kentucky.  Results of antibiotic susceptibility testing indicated that this strain of Salmonella is susceptible to commonly prescribed antibiotics.
From August 14-16, 2012 investigators from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) collected samples of cantaloupe at Chamberlain Farms.  They also took samples in the farm’s cantaloupe packinghouse from surfaces that would likely harbor bacteria.  This action was taken in cooperation with the Indiana State Department of Health.  FDA samples of cantaloupe collected at Chamberlain Farms showed the presence of Salmonella Typhimurium with an indistinguishable DNA fingerprint as the outbreak strain.  These samples also showed the presence of Salmonella Newport with a DNA fingerprint that was from the same outbreak strain that sickened 30 people in the states of Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, Virginia, and Wisconsin.  The link was supported by trace back information collected by state officials in Indiana and Illinois which showed that patients consumed cantaloupe bought at stores supplied by Chamberlain Farms.
On October 3, 2012 the FDA released FDA Form (Inspectional Observations) for Chamberlain Farms.  Federal inspectors observed poor sanitary practices at the firm’s cantaloupe packing shed.  A third Salmonella serotype, Anatum, was isolated in samples obtained via environmental swabs collected from various locations and surfaces in the shed.  FDA inspectors noted that food contact surfaces were not constructed or designed in a manner to allow appropriate cleaning.  Multiple locations of the conveyor rollers and belts had accumulated black, green and brown buildup.  There was standing water in the shed.  The firm’s garbage receptacle was overflowing with garbage constituting an attractant, breeding place, or harborage for pests.
And, this outbreak happened one year after the Listeria cantaloupe outbreak left 147 sick with over 33 dead.

What is it with Salmonella and USA Peanut Butter?
Source : http://www.foodpoisonjournal.com/foodborne-illness-outbreaks/what-is-it-with-salmonella-and-usa-peanut-butter/
By Andy Weisbecker (Dec 28, 2012)
In 2012 the FDA, the CDC and state and local public health officials in September 2012 began investigating a multi-state outbreak of Salmonella Bredeney infections eventually linked to peanut butter made by Sunland Inc. of Portales, New Mexico.
CDC collaborated with public health officials in several states and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to investigate a multistate outbreak of Salmonella Bredeney infections linked to Trader Joe’s Valencia Peanut Butter, manufactured by Sunland, Inc. of Portales, New Mexico.
Public health investigators used DNA “fingerprints” of Salmonella bacteria obtained through diagnostic testing with pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) to identify cases of illness that were part of this outbreak. They used data from PulseNet, the national subtyping network made up of state and local public health laboratories and federal food regulatory laboratories that performs molecular surveillance of foodborne infections.
A total of 42 individuals infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Bredeney were reported from 20 states: Arizona (1), California (7), Connecticut (3), Illinois (1), Louisiana (1), Massachusetts (3), Maryland (1), Michigan (1), Minnesota (1), Missouri (2), New Jersey (2), New Mexico (1), New York (2), Nevada (1), North Carolina (3), Pennsylvania (2), Rhode Island (1), Texas (5), Virginia (2), West Virginia (2).
Among 39 persons for whom information was available, illness onset dates ranged from June 14, 2012 to September 21, 2012. Ill persons ranged in age from less than 1 year to 79 years, with a median age of 7 years. Sixty-one percent of ill persons were children under the age of 10 years. Fifty-nine percent of ill persons were male. Among 36 persons with available information, 10 (28%) reported being hospitalized, and no deaths were reported.
Testing conducted by the New Jersey Department of Health, Virginia Division of Consolidated Laboratory Services, and Washington State Department of Agriculture laboratories isolated the outbreak strain of Salmonella Bredeney from opened jars of Trader Joe’s Valencia Creamy Peanut Butter collected from case-patients’ homes.
On September 20, FDA, the CDC and the state of California briefed Trader Joe’s on the status of the investigation, and the company voluntarily removed the suspected product from their store shelves. Trader Joe’s has also posted a customer advisory on their internet page and initiated a recall.
On September 23, FDA and CDC briefed Sunland Inc. on the status of the investigation and the company voluntarily recalled the almond butter and peanut butter products that were manufactured on the same product line as Trader Joe’s Valencia Creamy Salted Peanut Butter between May 1 and September 24, 2012.
On October 4, Sunland Inc. expanded its ongoing recall to include all products made in the Sunland nut butter production facility between March 1, 2010 and September 24, 2012. The company added 139 products to the recall, bringing the total number of products recalled by Sunland Inc. to 240. On October 12, Sunland Inc. expanded its ongoing recall to include raw and roasted shelled and in-shell peanuts sold in quantities from 2 ounces to 50 pounds, which are within their current shelf life or have no stated expiration date.
On October 5, the FDA announced that environmental samples taken in the Sunland Inc. nut butter production facility showed the presence of Salmonella. Subsequent analysis determined that Salmonella Bredeney with a DNA fingerprint that is the same as the outbreak strain was present in the samples.  Additionally, FDA analysis confirmed that peanut butter made in the Sunland nut butter facility showed the presence of Salmonella with a DNA fingerprint that is the same as the outbreak strain of Salmonella Bredeney. Testing conducted by the Washington State Department of Agriculture laboratory isolated the outbreak strain from an opened jar of Trader Joe’s Valencia Creamy Peanut Butter collected from a case-patient’s home.
As part of the continuing investigation, the FDA also inspected the Sunland Inc. production facilities, which include a building in which peanuts are processed and a separate building in which nut butters are made. On October 13, FDA announced that testing has found the presence of Salmonella in raw peanuts from the peanut processing facility. Environmental samples taken from this building showed the presence of Salmonella.
The FDA has now made the observations from its recent inspection of Sunland Inc. publicly available. This inspection was conducted between September 17 and October 16, 2012, and became part of the investigation of the Salmonella Bredeney outbreak linked to peanut butter made by Sunland Inc.
During this inspection investigators found that conditions in the company’s facility, the company’s manufacturing processes, and the company’s testing program for Salmonella may have allowed peanut butter that contained Salmonella to be distributed by the company. The FDA found that between June of 2009 and August of 2012, Sunland Inc. had distributed, or cleared for distribution, portions of 11 lots, or daily production runs, of peanut or almond butter after its own testing program identified the presence of at least one of nine different Salmonella types (Arapahoe, Bredeney, Cerro, Dallgow, Kubacha, Mbandaka, Meleagridis, Newport, and Teddington) in those lots. Two of these lots showed the presence of the outbreak strain of Salmonella Bredeney.
Five product samples collected and analyzed by FDA from Sunland Inc. showed the presence of Salmonella, but had not been identified as containing Salmonella by Sunland Inc.’s internal testing. Among those products were peanut butter and shelled raw peanuts. Two of these samples showed the presence of the outbreak strain of Salmonella Bredeney. Additionally, during its inspection of the plant in September and October 2012, the FDA found the presence of Salmonella in 28 environmental samples. Three of these samples showed the presence of the outbreak strain of Salmonella Bredeney.
Additionally, investigators found that employees improperly handled equipment, containers, and utensils used to hold and store food. Employees handling peanut products wiped gloved hands on street clothes and other times failed to wash their hands or change gloves. There were no hand washing sinks in the peanut processing building production or packaging areas and employees had bare-handed contact with ready-to-package peanuts.
There were no records documenting the cleaning of production equipment. The super-sized bags used by the firm to store peanuts were not cleaned despite being used for both raw and roasted peanuts. There was a leaking sink in a washroom, which resulted in water accumulating on the floor, and the plant is not built to allow floors, walls and ceilings to be adequately cleaned.
Finally, investigators found that raw materials were exposed to potential contamination. Raw, in-shell peanuts were found outside the plant in uncovered trailers. Birds were observed landing in the trailers and the peanuts were exposed to rain, which provides a growth environment for Salmonella and other bacteria. Inside the warehouse, facility doors were open to the outside, which could allow pests to enter.

Listeria and Cheese Do Not Mix
Source : http://www.marlerblog.com/legal-cases/listeria-and-cheese-do-not-mix/
By Bill Marler (Dec 27, 2012)
In 2012 the CDC collaborated with public health and regulatory officials in several states and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to investigate a multistate outbreak of Listeria monocytogenes infections (listeriosis). Joint investigation efforts indicated that ricotta salata cheese was the likely source.
Public health investigators used DNA “fingerprints” of Listeria obtained through diagnostic testing with pulsed-field gel electrophoresis, or PFGE, to identify cases of illness that were part of this outbreak. They used data from PulseNet, the national subtyping network made up of state and local public health laboratories and federal food regulatory laboratories that performs molecular surveillance of foodborne infections.
A total of 22 persons infected with the outbreak strain of Listeria monocytogenes were reported from 13 states and the District of Columbia. The number of ill people identified in each location was as follows: California (3), Colorado (1), District of Columbia (1), Maryland (3), Massachusetts (1), Minnesota (1), Nebraska (1), New Jersey (3), New Mexico (1), New York (1), Ohio (1), Pennsylvania (2), Virginia (2), and Washington (1).
Among persons for whom information is available, dates that illness was diagnosed ranged from March 28, 2012 to October 6, 2012. Twenty ill persons were hospitalized. Nine of the illnesses were related to a pregnancy; three of these were diagnosed in newborns. The other 13 ill persons ranged in age from 30 years to 87 years, with a median age of 77 years, and 54% were female. Four deaths were reported, one each from Minnesota, New York, Nebraska, and California. In Nebraska and California, public health officials determined that the deaths were related to listeriosis. In Minnesota and New York, public health officials did not report listeriosis as a cause of death because it was not listed as such on the death certificates. One fetal loss also was reported.
Epidemiologic, laboratory, and traceback investigations conducted by officials in local, state, and federal public health, agriculture, and regulatory agencies indicated that Frescolina Marte brand ricotta salata cheese imported from Italy and distributed by Forever Cheese, Inc. was the likely source of this outbreak of listeriosis.  FDA isolated the outbreak strain of Listeria from a sample of uncut Frescolina Marte brand ricotta salata cheese, which was imported from Italy and distributed by Forever Cheese, Inc. The outbreak strain was also isolated from other types of soft cheese that had already been cut and repackaged.

What is it with Salmonella and USA Peanut Butter?
Source : http://www.foodpoisonjournal.com/foodborne-illness-outbreaks/what-is-it-with-salmonella-and-usa-peanut-butter/
By Andy Weisbecker (Dec 28, 2012)
In 2012 the FDA, the CDC and state and local public health officials in September 2012 began investigating a multi-state outbreak of Salmonella Bredeney infections eventually linked to peanut butter made by Sunland Inc. of Portales, New Mexico.
CDC collaborated with public health officials in several states and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to investigate a multistate outbreak of Salmonella Bredeney infections linked to Trader Joe’s Valencia Peanut Butter, manufactured by Sunland, Inc. of Portales, New Mexico.
Public health investigators used DNA “fingerprints” of Salmonella bacteria obtained through diagnostic testing with pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) to identify cases of illness that were part of this outbreak. They used data from PulseNet, the national subtyping network made up of state and local public health laboratories and federal food regulatory laboratories that performs molecular surveillance of foodborne infections.
A total of 42 individuals infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Bredeney were reported from 20 states: Arizona (1), California (7), Connecticut (3), Illinois (1), Louisiana (1), Massachusetts (3), Maryland (1), Michigan (1), Minnesota (1), Missouri (2), New Jersey (2), New Mexico (1), New York (2), Nevada (1), North Carolina (3), Pennsylvania (2), Rhode Island (1), Texas (5), Virginia (2), West Virginia (2).
Among 39 persons for whom information was available, illness onset dates ranged from June 14, 2012 to September 21, 2012. Ill persons ranged in age from less than 1 year to 79 years, with a median age of 7 years. Sixty-one percent of ill persons were children under the age of 10 years. Fifty-nine percent of ill persons were male. Among 36 persons with available information, 10 (28%) reported being hospitalized, and no deaths were reported.
Testing conducted by the New Jersey Department of Health, Virginia Division of Consolidated Laboratory Services, and Washington State Department of Agriculture laboratories isolated the outbreak strain of Salmonella Bredeney from opened jars of Trader Joe’s Valencia Creamy Peanut Butter collected from case-patients’ homes.
On September 20, FDA, the CDC and the state of California briefed Trader Joe’s on the status of the investigation, and the company voluntarily removed the suspected product from their store shelves. Trader Joe’s has also posted a customer advisory on their internet page and initiated a recall.
On September 23, FDA and CDC briefed Sunland Inc. on the status of the investigation and the company voluntarily recalled the almond butter and peanut butter products that were manufactured on the same product line as Trader Joe’s Valencia Creamy Salted Peanut Butter between May 1 and September 24, 2012.
On October 4, Sunland Inc. expanded its ongoing recall to include all products made in the Sunland nut butter production facility between March 1, 2010 and September 24, 2012. The company added 139 products to the recall, bringing the total number of products recalled by Sunland Inc. to 240. On October 12, Sunland Inc. expanded its ongoing recall to include raw and roasted shelled and in-shell peanuts sold in quantities from 2 ounces to 50 pounds, which are within their current shelf life or have no stated expiration date.
On October 5, the FDA announced that environmental samples taken in the Sunland Inc. nut butter production facility showed the presence of Salmonella. Subsequent analysis determined that Salmonella Bredeney with a DNA fingerprint that is the same as the outbreak strain was present in the samples.  Additionally, FDA analysis confirmed that peanut butter made in the Sunland nut butter facility showed the presence of Salmonella with a DNA fingerprint that is the same as the outbreak strain of Salmonella Bredeney. Testing conducted by the Washington State Department of Agriculture laboratory isolated the outbreak strain from an opened jar of Trader Joe’s Valencia Creamy Peanut Butter collected from a case-patient’s home.
As part of the continuing investigation, the FDA also inspected the Sunland Inc. production facilities, which include a building in which peanuts are processed and a separate building in which nut butters are made. On October 13, FDA announced that testing has found the presence of Salmonella in raw peanuts from the peanut processing facility. Environmental samples taken from this building showed the presence of Salmonella.
The FDA has now made the observations from its recent inspection of Sunland Inc. publicly available. This inspection was conducted between September 17 and October 16, 2012, and became part of the investigation of the Salmonella Bredeney outbreak linked to peanut butter made by Sunland Inc.
During this inspection investigators found that conditions in the company’s facility, the company’s manufacturing processes, and the company’s testing program for Salmonella may have allowed peanut butter that contained Salmonella to be distributed by the company. The FDA found that between June of 2009 and August of 2012, Sunland Inc. had distributed, or cleared for distribution, portions of 11 lots, or daily production runs, of peanut or almond butter after its own testing program identified the presence of at least one of nine different Salmonella types (Arapahoe, Bredeney, Cerro, Dallgow, Kubacha, Mbandaka, Meleagridis, Newport, and Teddington) in those lots. Two of these lots showed the presence of the outbreak strain of Salmonella Bredeney.
Five product samples collected and analyzed by FDA from Sunland Inc. showed the presence of Salmonella, but had not been identified as containing Salmonella by Sunland Inc.’s internal testing. Among those products were peanut butter and shelled raw peanuts. Two of these samples showed the presence of the outbreak strain of Salmonella Bredeney. Additionally, during its inspection of the plant in September and October 2012, the FDA found the presence of Salmonella in 28 environmental samples. Three of these samples showed the presence of the outbreak strain of Salmonella Bredeney.
Additionally, investigators found that employees improperly handled equipment, containers, and utensils used to hold and store food. Employees handling peanut products wiped gloved hands on street clothes and other times failed to wash their hands or change gloves. There were no hand washing sinks in the peanut processing building production or packaging areas and employees had bare-handed contact with ready-to-package peanuts.
There were no records documenting the cleaning of production equipment. The super-sized bags used by the firm to store peanuts were not cleaned despite being used for both raw and roasted peanuts. There was a leaking sink in a washroom, which resulted in water accumulating on the floor, and the plant is not built to allow floors, walls and ceilings to be adequately cleaned.
Finally, investigators found that raw materials were exposed to potential contamination. Raw, in-shell peanuts were found outside the plant in uncovered trailers. Birds were observed landing in the trailers and the peanuts were exposed to rain, which provides a growth environment for Salmonella and other bacteria. Inside the warehouse, facility doors were open to the outside, which could allow pests to enter.

Food safety regulators unable to find source of E.coli for recalled burgers
Source : http://www.globalmontreal.com/health/food+safety+regulators+unable+to+find+source+of+ecoli+for+recalled+burgers/6442778508/story.html
By The Canadian Press (Dec 26, 2012)
TORONTO - The Canadian Food Inspection Agency says it hasn't been able to find the source of E.coli contamination which led to the recall of burgers made by an Ontario company.
The CFIA says it has completed its investigation into ingredients used in burgers produced at Cardinal Meat Specialists Ltd., which is based in Brampton, Ont.
Certain batches of burgers produced by the company were linked to an E.coli outbreak in mid-December which sickened five people.
The food inspection agency says after "extensive efforts," there is no evidence available to pinpoint a source of the contamination.
It says its investigation looked at spices, domestic beef ingredients and international beef ingredients.
Investigators assessed production, inspection and testing records, reviewed plant food safety procedures and conducted additional testing on burger ingredients.
The CFIA says all available domestic beef ingredient products tested negative for the E.coli strain related to the recalled burgers.
All spices also tested negative for E.coli and were ruled out of the investigation.
Additionally, investigators found all international ingredients in the burgers met all import certification and testing requirements. The CFIA also said there were no reported cases of illnesses in those countries related to the same E.coli strain.
"As all lines of inquiry have been exhausted, the CFIA's investigation will not progress further," the agency said in a statement.
"Canada has rigorous requirements for meat production to reduce the risk of E. coli, but even the best food safety systems cannot eliminate all potential opportunities for contamination all the time."
The CFIA says it will continue to work with public health authorities to monitor any reported cases of illness.
It advised consumers to keep their food safe by cooking ground beef thoroughly to destroy E.coli bacteria, and by ensuring that cooking surfaces and utensils are well cleaned after handling raw beef.
Five people — three in Alberta and two in Ontario — became sick after eating Butcher's Choice brand frozen beef burgers.
Two other beef products — Cardinal Select brand Prime Rib Beef Burgers and Butcher's Choice Hickory Barbecue Beef Burgers — were also recalled, but they were not linked to any cases of illness.
All the products, which were recalled between Dec. 12 and Dec. 15, were produced by Cardinal Meat Specialists and had been sold at Loblaws stores across Canada.
Read it on Global News: Global Montreal | Food safety regulators unable to find source of E.coli for recalled burgers

Canada's food safety rules could be better, experts say
Source : http://www.cbc.ca/news/health/story/2012/12/26/health-xl-foods-canada-food-safety-e-coli-meat.html
By The Canadian Press (Dec 26, 2012)
Veteran cattleman George Graham has a common-sense solution for how to prevent a repeat of an E. coli outbreak and extensive product recall in the fall that made 18 people sick, threw thousands out of work and smeared the Canadian beef brand.
Officials who regulate and work in the industry must simply do their jobs properly.
"We have an extremely good product and we have a very good food safety program compared to other places around the world," Graham said from his feedlot in southern Alberta where his family has raised cattle since 1918.
"We just need to be more vigilant that the job is getting done."
The manure hit the fan in early September when U.S. food inspectors found E. coli bacteria in a shipment of beef from the XL Foods plant in Brooks, Alta.
Special Report: The XL Foods Beef Recall
The U.S. quickly closed its border to beef from the plant, which slaughters up to 40 per cent of Canada's cattle. Canadian officials then shut the plant down and sent 2,200 workers home.
In the weeks that followed, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency pulled more than 2,000 products across the country involving millions of kilograms of beef — the largest meat recall in Canada's history.
American food safety regulators announced a similar recall by XL Foods of its products in more than 30 states.
In the end, there were 18 confirmed cases of people getting sick in Canada from a specific and potentially deadly strain of E. coli linked to XL Foods beef.
Food safety rules not enforced enough
Canadian producers lost money as cattle prices fell and ranchers had to pay more to ship their cattle to other plants.
Millions of kilograms of beef from prime Canadian cattle was dumped in landfills or rendered into non-food products.
The company that once boasted of being the largest Canadian-owned beef plant turned over management of the Brooks plant to JBS USA, an affiliate of Brazil-based JBS SA, which has an option to buy the facility and other XL Foods holdings.
Professor Rick Holley, a University of Manitoba food safety expert, said there is no excuse for the sanitation problems that led to the closure of the Brooks plant.
He said Canada is respected around the world for its progressive food safety rules. The problem, he suggested, is that those rules are not as vigorously enforced as they should be.
How could 40 inspectors and six veterinarians at the XL plant somehow miss the problems?
"We see too much pressure being put on inspection staff to complete reports," said Holley, who added that some inspectors need more training to effectively do their jobs.
"They just have to get better at the proactive end of things, a lot better."
The responsibility for food safety also rests with company owners. Holley said managers and supervisors must set clear operating standards for hygiene and strictly enforce them.
Part of that responsibility is to ensure that workers, who are often immigrants who speak English as a second language, are fully trained to understand what is expected of them.
Workers must also feel comfortable about being able to speak up if they have concerns.
80% of cattle Canadian-born
Holley said food safety in meat plants is everyone's concern, but ultimately it is the federal food inspection staff that set the tone.
"There is a constant requirement for regulatory oversight, but that regulatory oversight must be viewed by the plant's managers and staff as competent," he said.
"When the activity doesn't appear to be competent, then you end up with people taking shortcuts, and outcomes such as we have seen at XL Foods."
How much damage did the recall and E. coli outbreak cause Canada's beef industry, which is centred in Alberta, but includes cattle producers in every province? No one is quite sure.
Beef recall interactive timeline
Most of the beef that Canadians eat — almost 80 per cent — comes from cattle that are Canadian-born, bred and processed. Canada produces twice the amount of beef that it consumes. The rest is exported, mainly to the United States.
The slogan of the industry's marketing arm, Canada Beef Inc., is "Quality That Inspires Confidence."
Ron Glaser, a Canada Beef vice-president, said it appears that most consumers haven't stopped eating beef. But shoppers are asking more questions about the beef they are buying.
"They want to know what plant it is from," he said from Calgary. "They are going to want to know, basically, is it safe?"
To reassure consumers, the industry is developing an information campaign that it is expected to roll out in the new year, Glaser said.
It is likely to include information on how producers take care in raising cattle and an assurance that Canada has an extremely safe food system.
The XL Foods fiasco will be cast as an exception, not the rule.
"It is unfortunate that there are occasionally problems like this," Glaser said. "It is unfortunate that this will potentially tarnish a broader industry."
Making ends meet
On Oct. 29, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency cleared the Brooks plant to resume slaughtering cattle and packaging beef. Products have since been allowed to be shipped again to retailers. XL Foods has also been given permission to resume exports to the United States.
Despite a seeming return to normalcy, some ranchers warn it will take time for the industry to recover.
"Are we making ends meet? Just barely, as we are still playing catch-up for the years that we did not get a decent price for our calves during the BSE years and we had to use all our resources to keep ranching," said Eileen Juhasz, who has 150 head on her ranch south of Lethbridge.
The CFIA has said there was no single factor that caused the E. coli outbreak in Brooks. Problems included deficiencies in bacteria control, sanitation and record keeping.
The federal government has promised a complete review of what happened and to make its final report public, including possible recommendations to improve food safety.
"Certainly we take this to heart and don't want to see these kind of issues happen, but we'll never apologize for the size and the scope of the recall. If that's what's required, that's what we'll do," Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz told The Canadian Press.
The federal government is also putting its faith in JBS USA, the company that's now managing the Brooks plant.
"JBS is a tremendous corporate partner," Ritz said. "They brought an era of food culture to that plant that we haven't seen for quite some time so we look forward to them and moving on to the future."
Cattleman George Graham is also bullish on JBS and hopes the international food giant will buy the XL Foods plant.
He said business at his South Slope Feeders feedlot outside of Brooks is picking up. He recalled how the industry bounced back from the financial upheaval caused by the mad cow disease scare a decade ago.
"We have seen a lot of hurdles thrown at us the last 10 years and we've managed to survive some pretty big ones," he said. "I don't think this is going to be any different."

MRSA ST398 found in British Raw Milk
Source : http://www.marlerblog.com/case-news/mrsa-st398-found-in-british-raw-milk/
By  Bill Marler (Dec 25, 2012)
British News reports a new strain of Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) has been found in British milk.  The new strain, MRSA ST398, has been identified in seven samples of bulk milk from five different farms in England.  The discovery, from tests on 1,500 samples, indicates that antibiotic-resistant organisms are gaining an increasing hold in the dairy industry.
The disclosure comes amid growing concern over the use of modern antibiotics on British farms, driven by price pressure imposed by the big supermarket chains. Intensive farming with thousands of animals raised in cramped conditions means infections spread faster and the need for antibiotics is consequently greater.
Three classes of antibiotics rated as “critically important to human medicine” by the World Health Organisation – cephalosporins, fluoroquinolones and macrolides – have increased in use in the animal population by eightfold in the last decade.
The more antibiotics are used, the greater the likelihood that antibiotic-resistant bacteria, such as MRSA, will evolve.
Experts say there is no risk of MRSA infection to consumers of milk or dairy products so long as the milk is pasteurized.
The risk comes from farmworkers, vets and abattoir workers, who may become infected through contact with livestock and transmit the bug to others.

Raw Milk – Two Settlements Reached – E. coli and Campylobacter
Source : http://www.marlerblog.com/case-news/mrsa-st398-found-in-british-raw-milk/
By  Bill Marler (Dec 25, 2012)
Settlements were reached yet another (actually two) raw milk outbreak(s) – one, an E. coli O157:H7 outbreak and the other a Campylobacter outbreak.
In 2012 the Missouri State Department of Health and Senior Services reported 14 confirmed cases of E. coli O157:H7 linked to raw milk.  Two E. coli cases were from Boone and Marion counties. The 14 cases had similar lab results, geographic proximity and/or case history.  All drank raw milk or are family members of those who drank raw milk.  A 2-year-old Boone County child sickened with E. coli developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a complication of E. coli infection that causes kidney failure.  Five cases were reported in Boone County, three in Cooper, three in Howard, and one each in Jackson, Marion and Callaway counties. The illnesses were linked to a farm owned by Sam Stroupe of Armstrong, Missouri.  Marler Clark resolved the case of one young woman who unknowingly drank raw milk while at a friend’s home.
Also in 2012, raw milk produced at The Family Cow farm in Pennsylvania was the source of the most severe outbreak of sickness linked to raw milk in Pennsylvania in five years. The Pennsylvania Department of Health reported 76 confirmed cases of campylobacteriosis.  Marler Clark resolved the case of one man who purchased the milk at a farmer’s market.
For more information on the risks of raw milk, see www.realrawmilkfacts.com.

For Volunteers: Guide to Food Safety
Source : http://foodpoisoningbulletin.com/2012/for-volunteers-guide-to-food-safety/
By Linda Larsen (Dec 25, 2012)
Many selfless people spend Christmas and other holidays serving food for those less fortunate. For those people, and those who volunteer at church dinners and community gatherings, the USDA has put together a booklet on a volunteer’s guide to food safety. The advice is intended for consumer use only, not for retail or institutional settings, but it’s a good mini refresher course for all.
The information can be downloaded at the USDA web site. The information starts with an introduction to foodborne illness and how bacteria get into food. It includes tips for preserving the evidence if someone does get sick, and how to report a possible outbreak.
Some tips in the booklet include selecting a reliable person to be in charge. That person should contact the local health department to learn about any rules and regulations about serving food to groups. She should also make sure the necessary equipment is available, and that there is enough storage space, refrigeration space, and cooking space to handle the event.
The booklet includes a handy chart giving the safe minimum internal temperatures for foods, and cooking guidelines, along with tips for transporting and reheating foods. A cold storage chart will help you keep track of foods before the event. And there are reminders to follow the four basic tenets of serving safe food: clean, separate, cook, and chill.
In addition, the USDA’s fact sheet “7 Food Safety Steps for Successful Community Meals” is a useful guide for events. It provides an overview of the seven steps necessary for a successful and safe community gathering.

Job openings
12/28. Quality & Food Safety Technologist - Oklahoma
12/28. Food Safety Specialist – St, Cloud, MN
12/28. QA & Food Safety Manager - Kansas City, KS

Norovirus Outbreak Hits Illinois Prison
Source : http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2012/12/norovirus-outbreak-hits-illinois-prison/
By News Desk (Dec 29, 2012)
At least 140 inmates at an Illinois prison were sickened with Norovirus infections this week, according to local news reports.
The outbreak struck inmates at the The Stateville Correctional Center in Joliet, IL, a maximum security facility for men.
The first victims fell ill Christmas Day, according to local news station CBS 2.
“The Department of Corrections and the Department of Public Health have already started working on outbreak and control efforts,” spokeswoman Melaney Arnold of the Department of Corrections told CBS 2.
Sick inmates have been separated from the others in order to prevent the spread of the virus.
Samples have been collected from patients and are being sent to the state health lab for analysis.
Norovirus is a food and waterborne pathogen transmitted through fecal matter. The virus spreads easily from person to person, especially in enclosed environments such as cruise ships.
Symptoms usually appear 24 to 48 hours after exposure to the virus (but can occur earlier), and include diarrhea, vomiting and nausea and abdominal pain. The illness usually resolves itself within a couple days, although patients should drink liquids to avoid dehydration.

On the Border Salmonella Outbreak 2012
Source : http://www.foodpoisonjournal.com/foodborne-illness-outbreaks/on-the-border-salmonella-outbreak-2012/
By Patti Waller (Dec 30, 2012)
Largest Salmonella outbreak in Washington.
At least 120 people were suspected to have fallen ill in a Salmonella Virchow outbreak tied to the On the Border restaurant in Vancouver, Washington.  That case count included 43 laboratory-confirmed patients and another 77 who exhibited symptoms and had a corresponding exposure history at On the Border. Thus far, the only Salmonella Virchow illnesses reported in the country connected back to On the Border, including patients from Oregon and California who were traveling to the area.  Six were hospitalized.
Customers suffering from a Salmonella Virchow infection ate at On the Border between September 20 and October 8, 2012. The restaurant voluntarily closed between October 9 and 15 as health officials investigated the cause of the outbreak.  The restaurant reopened on October 15.
Environmental testing did not aid health officials in identifying the cause of a Salmonella Virchow outbreak that occurred at an On the Border. As with many foodborne illness outbreaks, the cause will likely remain undetermined.
The Salmonella strain at the center of the outbreak, Salmonella Virchow, is a relatively rare strain in the U.S. The Washington State Department of Health has posted these illnesses on PulseNet, a national epidemiology network, in an effort to track other potential Salmonella Virchow outbreaks around the country.
Salmonella:  Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, is the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of Salmonella outbreaks. The Salmonella lawyers of Marler Clark have represented thousands of victims of Salmonella and other foodborne illness outbreaks and have recovered over $600 million for clients.  Marler Clark is the only law firm in the nation with a practice focused exclusively on foodborne illness litigation.  Our Salmonella lawyers have litigated Salmonella cases stemming from outbreaks traced to a variety of foods, such as cantaloupe, tomatoes, ground turkey, salami, sprouts, cereal, peanut butter, and food served in restaurants.  The law firm has brought Salmonella lawsuits against such companies as Cargill, ConAgra, Peanut Corporation of America, Sheetz, Taco Bell, Subway and Wal-Mart.
If you or a family member became ill with a Salmonella infection, including Reactive Arthritis or Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), after consuming food and you’re interested in pursuing a legal claim, contact the Marler Clark Salmonella attorneys for a free case evaluation.

Wegmans Lettuce Linked to 33 with E. coli
Source : http://www.foodpoisonjournal.com/foodborne-illness-outbreaks/wegmans-lettuce-linked-to-33-with-e-coli/
By Bill Marler (Dec 28, 2012)
A total of 33 ill persons infected with the outbreak strain of STEC O157:H7 were reported from five states. The number of ill people identified in each state with the outbreak strain was as follows: Connecticut (2), Massachusetts (3), New York (26), Pennsylvania (1), and Virginia (1).
46% of ill persons were hospitalized. Two ill persons developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a type of kidney failure, and no deaths were reported.
Collaborative investigation efforts of state, local, and federal public health and regulatory agencies linked this outbreak to pre-packaged leafy greens produced by State Garden of Chelsea, Massachusetts.
Traceback investigations of pre-packaged leafy greens purchased by ill persons identified State Garden as a common producer, but a source of contamination has not been identified. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) continues its investigation to identify the source of the contamination.

Salmonella Outbreak in Southwest Alberta “Running Rampant”
Source : http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2012/12/salmonella-outbreak-in-southwest-alberta-running-rampant/
By News Desk (Dec 26, 2012)
An outbreak of Salmonella is “running rampant” in the province, the Alberta Health Services (AHS) is warning.
An area of rural southwestern Alberta has recorded more than 30 Salmonella cases since Dec. 13 in the outbreak health officials say is being spread by household contacts.
In addition to AHS, Environmental Public Health, Health Canada First Nations, and Inuit Health are assisting in the investigation.
The officials are circulating a health advisory that warns of symptoms of the infection that includes dehydration, diarrhea that may contain blood, abdominal cramps, fever, vomiting and nausea — all of which may show six to 72 hours after infection and can last for several weeks.
Area residents are urged to wash their hands, fresh fruit and vegetables and surfaces used in food preparation to avoid infection.
The investigation to find out the root cause of the Salmonella outbreak continues, agency spokesmen say. Most cases are from rural areas, making locating its origin more difficult.

Widespread Norovirus Circulating in Colorado
Source : http://foodpoisoningbulletin.com/2012/widespread-norovirus-circulating-in-colorado/
By Linda Larsen (Dec 26, 2012)
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment is reporting widespread norovirus throughout Colorado. The outbreak is especially bad in nursing homes, assisted living facilities, schools, and day care centers. The virus causes symptoms such as vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, and stomach cramps.
Alicia Cronquist, who is an epidemiologist for the department, said in a statement, “we believe the illness is being caused by a virus germ called norovirus. This infection is very common this time of year. Symptoms usually last about 1-3 days and can cause dehydration, which can be dangerous for children and elderly people.”
The virus is easily spread to others via direct contact, touching contaminated surfaces, or eating contaminated food. To help reduce the spread of the virus, any child with a stomach illness should be kept at home. Everyone is encouraged to wash their hands frequently. Any ill persons should delay visiting relatives in nursing homes or assisted living facilities until 2 days after the illness is over. In addition, don’t prepare food for others until 48 hours after symptoms have stopped. Don’t share food or drink with other people while you are sick. And always immediately clean areas where someone has been sick with a solution of one part bleach to nine parts water.
For more information on norovirus, visit the CDC web site. And stay well this holiday season!

Source of E. coli O157:H7 in Cardinal’s Burgers Not Found
Source : http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2012/12/source-of-e-coli-o157h7-in-cardinals-burgers-not-foundf/
By News Desk (Dec 25, 2012)
The source of the E. coli O157:H7 that contaminated specialty hamburgers made by Cardinal Meat Specialists Limited in Ontario is going to remain a mystery, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) acknowledged Monday.
CFIA’s official investigation into the foreign and domestic beef used by Cardinal Meat, along with all the spices used as ingredients in the hamburgers has now ended without producing any evidence to identify a source of the contamination.
The beef products from the Cardinal Meat Specialists’ plant at Brampton, Ontario that were recalled for E. coli O157:H7 contamination included: Butcher’s Choice Garlic Peppercorn, Butcher’s Choice Hickory Barbecue, and Cardinal Select Prime Rib Beef burgers.
Canadian health officials earlier connected the genetic fingerprint of the bacteria found on samples one day’s production from the Cardinal plant with three E. coli illnesses in Ontario and two in Alberta.  In a statement, CFIA said investigators pursued all avenues of inquiry, including:
•Assessing production, inspection and testing records;
•Reviewing plant food safety procedures; and
•Conducting additional testing on burger ingredients.
CFIA on Dec. 21 eliminated foreign beef sources, in Australia and New Zealand, as the cause of contaminate. There haven’t been any reported cases of illness with the same E. coli O157:H7 genetic fingerprint outside of Canada.
The CFIA has now confirmed that all available domestic beef ingredient products have also tested negative for E. coli O157:H7. As all lines of inquiry have been exhausted, CFIA said its investigation will not progress further. A detailed report of the investigation will be posted on the CFIA’s website in the coming weeks.
The Cardinal beef products were recalled between Dec. 12 and Dec. 15, 2012. CFIA said it will continue to work with local public health authorities to monitor any further illnesses that might be reported

Students get food poisoning from instant noodles
Source : http://europe.chinadaily.com.cn/china/2012-12/25/content_16054501.htm
By chinadaily.com. (Dec 25, 2012)
A total of 39,227 packets of "Yuzhu" instant noodles have been quarantined in Shaanxi province after eight students displayed symptoms of food poisoning after eating the noodles, Xi'an-based newspaper Huashang Daily reported.
According to the newspaper, eight girls from the Hongxin Primary School in Zhouzhi, a county 78 kilometers from provincial capital Xi'an, had shown symptoms of food poisoning after sharing one bag of "Yuzhu" spicy instant noodles on Dec 21. The county launched a food safety inspection and sent the samples for safety checks.

The eight students returned to school on Monday after receiving treatment in hospital. The authorities are still waiting for the results of t

 


                       


  Seats are limited. Reserve your spot today!!

2013 Basic and Advanced HACCP
Training Scheduals are Available
Click here to check the HACCP Training

This certification fulfills all USDA/FSIS and FDA regulatory requirements for HACCP Training. The certification is also accepted by auditing firms who require HACCP Training as a component of the audit. Our training has encompassed a multitude of industries from the farm to the table.
We are so proud that more than 400 attendees successfully finished Basic and Advanced HACCP Trainings through FoodHACCP. All attendees received a HACCP certificate which fulfills all USDA/FSIS and FDA regulatory requirements for HACCP Training.