Friday, May 6, 2011

Food Safety News Items for May 6, 2011

Here are a few interesting headlines from the week ending May 6. Happy Friday from sunny (finally) State College. Titles and links. MB

CDC: Over 50? Heat cold cuts to 165 degrees to avoid Listeria – If pregnant women are asked to avoid deli meats, should older people also avoid them? Certainly if older people are classified as high risk due to conditions, it is probably something to consider, or even choosing products with certain preservatives. But not a huge risk when we consider the low prevalence and the good health of most 50 to 70+ year olds. It is also a good idea not to hold that store sliced deli meat for more than 3 or 4 days.

Importance of Hygiene, Surface Cleaning Underscored by Listeriosis Outbreaks – Staph (MRSA) is a concern in hospitals, so it is not hard to imagine that Listeria can be a large concern as well, especially preparing food for high risk populations. It is time for Hospital HACCP.

FDA issues first new rules under Food Safety Modernization Act – The first two rules of FSMA – 1) Give FDA more authority to detain suspect food, or food produced under unsanitary conditions, and 2) Require importers to report if a food has been previously rejected by another country before it can be imported into the US. Nothing here as far as new requirements, but will increase FDA’s willingness to hold food products made in less-than-good facilities.

Florida: Grape Tomatoes Are Recalled – a single lot of tomatoes tested positive for Salmonella. No illnesses reported. However, has resulted in a CA salad company conducting a rather large recall.

Feds finally catching up with California farmers’ food safety standards – USDA adopting CA Leafy Greens standards for nation.

CSU Report on Extending Shelf Life of Meat – A free report from Colorado State on practices for extending shelf-life of meat products. Not yet reviewed, but worth a look.

Click here to access the report.

Food For Thought: US Squanders Energy On Food Chain – “Between 1997 and 2002, in fact, over 80 percent of the increase in annual U.S. energy consumption was food related.” This is a good read, although the term “squanders’ seems a little overstated.

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