News

FDA releases Blue Bell Creameries inspection notes

FDA releases Blue Bell Creameries inspection notes

In the wake of recent cases of listeriosis in the USA linked to ice cream manufactured by Blue Bell Creameries, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has published “inspectional observations” from their most recent inspections at three of the company’s production sites. As of April 20, 2015, a total of ten patients infected with several […]

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Sliced apples recalled over Listeria contamination

Sliced apples recalled over Listeria contamination

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has issued a Food Recall warning relating to sliced apples and products containing sliced apples produced by Sun Rich Fresh Foods Inc., of Brampton Ontario, because of possible contamination with Listeria monocytogenes. The recall applies to six products sold in Canada and some US states under the Sun Rich […]

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Listeria outbreak reported in Denmark

Listeria outbreak reported in Denmark

According to press reports, the Danish State Serum Institute (SSI) has announced that five cases of listeriosis were recorded within a single week during April. Two of the people infected subsequently died. Typically, only one case of Listeria infection would be expected during a seven-day period in Denmark. So the SSI considers five cases in […]

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Botulism cases linked to home-canned potatoes

Botulism cases linked to home-canned potatoes

Public health officials in the US state of Ohio have identified potato salad made with home canned potatoes as the most likely cause of an outbreak of botulism that has affected people who attended a “church potluck” in Lancaster on 19 April. As of 27 April, there were 21 confirmed cases, including one death, associated […]

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Editors blog

Food safety off the radar for UK politicians

Food safety off the radar for UK politicians

Polling stations open for business on Thursday morning in the UK and the country is firmly in the grip of election fever as I write. With the electorate poised to deliver its verdict on who should be entrusted with running things for the next five years it seems like a good time to examine the […]

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The spice trade under scrutiny

The spice trade under scrutiny

Undeclared nut protein in herbs and spices is a hot topic and a developing food safety problem. The issue first surfaced in the USA and Canada in December last year, when samples of cumin began testing positive for peanut protein, triggering a series of recalls and prompting the FDA to issue advice to consumers with […]

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Raw milk – EFSA wades in

Raw milk – EFSA wades in

What is it about raw milk that rouses such passions? A few minutes spent researching the subject on the Internet soon turns up all manner of individuals and organisations promoting the supposed health, nutritional and taste benefits of drinking milk fresh from the cow, while deriding the pasteurised version as a pale shadow of the […]

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Food safety in 2014 – the good, the bad and the politics

Food safety in 2014 – the good, the bad and the politics

Looking back over the last twelve months it is possible to see several positive developments in the world of food safety. Firstly, the implications of growing levels of food fraud have now been recognised in the wake of the 2013 horsemeat in beef scandal and in the UK this has resulted in the setting up […]

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New Research

FDA Food Safety Challenge finalists announced

FDA Food Safety Challenge finalists announced

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has revealed the names of the five finalists in its Food Safety Challenge to develop promising new approaches for achieving big improvements in the speed of detection methods for Salmonella in fresh produce. The finalists are as follows: A team at Auburn University with a method combing magnetoelastic […]

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Oregano oil nanoemulsion could help control pathogens on fresh produce

Oregano oil nanoemulsion could help control pathogens on fresh produce

Researchers at Wayne State University in the USA have been investigating the use of nanoemulsions of antimicrobial essential oils from plants as an alternative to chlorinated water for decontaminating fresh produce. The research team looked at essential oils from plants such thyme, oregano and clove as natural antimicrobials that could potentially reduce levels of bacterial […]

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Researchers develop meat spoilage nano-sensor

Researchers develop meat spoilage nano-sensor

A team of chemists from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the USA has developed a new portable sensor based on chemically modified carbon nanotubes, which is able to detect the volatile chemical by-products of microbial meat spoilage. The MIT researchers modified the carbon nanotubes with a metalloporphyrin containing a central cobalt atom bound […]

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Agency publishes aspartame study findings

Agency publishes aspartame study findings

The UK Food Standards Agency is publishing the findings of a study carried out by Hull York Medical School comparing the reactions to aspartame of people who have previously reported symptoms with those of people with no history of symptoms. The researchers recruited a group of individuals who had reported having adverse reactions after consuming […]

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Feature Articles

THE HEPATITIS A VIRUS – an overlooked cause of foodborne disease

THE HEPATITIS A VIRUS – an overlooked cause of foodborne disease

Bacteria are by far the most common and best known causes of foodborne illness in the developed world and the food industry is well aware of the risks presented by Salmonella, E. coli O157 and other bacterial pathogens. But there are also a small group of disease-causing viruses that can be transmitted by contaminated food. […]

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A QUESTION OF CONFIDENCE – how food microbiology labs can ensure their results are reliable

A QUESTION OF CONFIDENCE – how food microbiology labs can ensure their results are reliable

Supply chains have become ever longer and more complex as food production has developed into a truly global industry. The need to monitor the safety of food at every stage means that microbiological testing remains a key weapon in the fight against food contamination and the volume of testing undertaken continues to grow. Today’s laboratories […]

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HOW CLEAN IS CLEAN? – Rapid food hygiene monitoring methods

HOW CLEAN IS CLEAN? – Rapid food hygiene monitoring methods

The HACCP-driven hygiene procedures in place in modern food production facilities are an essential part of ensuring safety and quality in the food supply chain. Clean food handling and processing equipment is a prerequisite for good hygiene, but the effectiveness of cleaning must also be monitored and recorded.

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ANTIBIOTIC RESISTANCE – a global food safety problem

ANTIBIOTIC RESISTANCE – a global food safety problem

The development of antibiotics in the 1940s led to a revolution in the treatment of infectious diseases. But after more than 60 years of use and misuse, many antibiotics have lost much of their effectiveness as bacteria develop resistance to them. This situation has arisen partly as a result of overuse in clinical medicine, but […]

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Other Recent Posts

Genetic tests help link Salmonella outbreak to German egg producer

Genetic tests help link Salmonella outbreak to German egg producer

| April 29, 2015

A newly published report by a UK-based outbreak team reveals how whole genome sequencing and food traceback investigations linked a multinational outbreak of Salmonella Enteritidis PT4b infection to an egg producer in Germany. The UK outbreak occurred between May and September 2014 and included at least 287 cases linked to a hospital in central England […]

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Blue Bell Creameries expands recall to include all products

Blue Bell Creameries expands recall to include all products

| April 21, 2015

Ice cream manufacturer Blue Bell Creameries of Brenham, Texas, has announced that it is voluntarily recalling all products currently on the market from all of its production facilities because they have the potential to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes. The recall includes all ice cream, frozen yoghurt, sherbet and frozen snack products distributed to retail […]

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Canadian E. coli outbreak may be linked to leafy greens

Canadian E. coli outbreak may be linked to leafy greens

| April 17, 2015

The Public Health Agency of Canada, in collaboration with other federal and provincial public health authorities, is currently investigating a possible link between an outbreak of E. coli O157:H7 infections and leafy green vegetables. Twelve cases of illness caused by the same strain of verotoxigenic E. coli O157:H7 have so far been identified in Alberta […]

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