In this episode, Don and Ben talk about life hacks and things that might not be life hacks; Gwyneth Paltrow, cookbooks and Ben’s recent media experiences (and the perils of emailing while sitting on the toilet). Also in this episode the guys breakdown STEC in soy nut butter and Dixie Dew’s FDA 483 form plus a bonus on ROP cheeses.
Unpasteurized apple cider – a staple of the northern U.S. and Canadian fall festival circuit was blamed for causing more than 100 people to fall ill with cryptosporidiosis.
Nick Draper of My Journal Courier reports a lawsuit has now been files against several groups, including the Pike County Chamber of Commerce and the Barry Business Association.
Melissa Kinman of Quincy filed the civil action against Steven and Linda Yoder of Yoder Brothers Dairy Farm, the Pike County Chamber of Commerce and the Barry Business Association. In it, she contends the Yoders were selling and offering free samples of unpasteurized cider that was tainted with Cryptosporidium.
The outbreak sickened people ranging in age from less than 1 year old to 89 years old.
Health workers from Pike and Adams counties, the state and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention began investigating reports of profuse or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and vomiting. Tests done in December 2015 by the CDC confirmed there was cider contaminated with Cryptosporidium.
Cider was not sold at last year’s drive after officials decided to pull the product.
A list of cider and juice-related outbreaks — 84 outbreaks leading to over 3,500 illnesses going back to 1924 – is available here.
l“We have always used high quality ingredients and prepared them using classic cooking techniques,” Steve Ells, Chipotle’s founder and CEO, said in a statement.
“We never resorted to using added colors or flavors like many other fast food companies do simply because these industrial additives often interfere with the taste of the food. However, commercially available tortillas, whether they are for us or someone else, use dough conditioners and preservatives.”
Chipotle now says it uses only local and organically grown produce as well as meats from animals raised without hormones or non-therapeutic antibiotics. None of the 51 ingredients in the restaurant’s foods have been genetically modified but the company still sells soft drinks that contain GMO-containing ingredients.
The company has even released a visual ingredient statement – allowing customers to see exactly what’s being used to create their Chipotle dishes.
Good luck with that.
Like many other food safety types, I will continue to avoid. Chipotle’s emphasis on marketing bullshit – 21st century snake-oil — rather than safety shows how much they have jumped the shark.
If Chipotle thinks corn, or any of their other ingredients, isn’t genetically modified, then they’re drinking their own jello.
I’ve reached my American Beauty moment, and may I go on and have such a fruitful career as Kevin Spacey has since 1999.
I’m an unemployed former food safety professor of almost 20 years, who coaches little and big kids in hockey and goofs around.
I’ve enjoyed the last few months – despite the angst of moving into a house that may slide down the hill at any moment given the Brisbane rains – but with 80,000 direct subscribers and students and media still contacting me daily, I feel a connection.
I just gotta figure out how to get paid.
(If you see any adverts on barfblog.com, like Amy did this morning, it is not authorized. Chapman and I are quite happy to say what the fuck we want and call people on their food safety fairytales).
And I would like to publicly apologize to Amy for dragging me to Australia, and all the bitching I did about shitty Internet, and how I lost my career (at the mall).
It’s looking much better now.
Kansas State University took whatever opportunity they could to get rid of me, for the salary, for the controversy, for whatever. Wasn’t too long after that Kirk-2025-Schultz bailed for Washington state. The provost queen is still stuck there.
As full professor, Kansas had become boring and I hated doing admin shit.
And there was no ice.
When people in Australia ask me about President Trump (two words that never sound right together, like Dr. Oz – thanks, John Oliver) I say, look at Kansas, that is what will happen to America.
Kansas can only hope that reports are true that the Trump administration will let its governor, Sam Brownback, escape the disaster he created in Topeka for a quieter United Nations agricultural post in Rome. And global humanity can only hope for the best.
Mr. Brownback, a Republican first elected on the Tea Party crest of 2010, used his office as a laboratory for conservative budget experimentation. His insistence that tax cuts create, not diminish, revenues has left the state facing a ballooning deficit plus a ruling by the state Supreme Court that Kansas schoolchildren have been unconstitutionally shortchanged in state aid for years, with the poorest minority children most deprived.
The court ruled this month that they would shut the state’s schools if funding wasn’t made equitable by June 30. It found reading test scores of nearly half of African-American students and more than one-third of Hispanic students were deficient under aid formulas favoring more affluent school districts.
Mr. Brownback played no small role in the long-running school crisis by leading the Republican Legislature to limit school aid after enacting the largest tax cuts in state history, for upper-bracket business owners. Characteristically, the governor’s reaction to the court mandate was to further undermine schools by suggesting parents “be given the opportunity and resources to set their child up for success through other educational choices.”
If that’s the governor’s parting contribution to the school crisis before his flight to a Trump diplomatic appointment, Kansas parents and school administrators cannot be too surprised. They have been experiencing the deepening budget crisis firsthand in shortened school hours and resources as the state suffered two credit downgrades. Public protest led to a number of Brownback loyalists voted out last year, with legislative newcomers igniting a budget revolt against the governor. He barely survived a showdown last month, by vetoing a $1 billion tax increase.
The tax push seems likely to be renewed, since the state faces a two-year $1.2-billion deficit plus the school funding mandate. For that obligation, state education officials have estimated it might require $841 million over the next two years. The court fight was prompted by a slide in school aid that began in the recession under Mr. Brownback’s predecessor, Gov. Mark Parkinson, a Democrat. But it spiraled once the Brownback tax cuts drained state coffers.
It seems unfair that Mr. Brownback might abandon the mess he created, especially since Mr. Trump never ceases to renounce life’s “losers.” But Kansans have learned the hard way that they need to be free from the benighted Brownback era, and maybe Mr. Brownback has, too.
I wish nothing but the best for my Kansas colleagues, and a slow, endless angst for administration assholes who put money above values.
There was a time I thought being a prof meant something.
Federal authorities announced Friday they’re investigating evidence that companies including JBS SA and BRF SA, the nation’s largest meat producers, bribed government officials to approve the sale and export of soiled meat. Federal police served hundreds of court orders, including more than 30 detention warrants, in what local media says is the largest police operation in the country’s history.
Police released transcripts of recorded conversations showing how agricultural inspectors were bribed, sometimes in the form of prime cuts of beef. It’s alleged that some of the meat, including sausages and cold cuts, was adulterated with ingredients including pig heads, and that suspect smells were masked by applying acid. Inspectors who refused to comply, it’s alleged, were reassigned elsewhere by the meat companies.
“It seems like magic realism,” Marcos Josegrei da Silva, the judge responsible for overseeing the so-called Weak Flesh investigation, said in a court order. “Unfortunately, it is not.”
The story trickled around the globe over the weekend and is now like a Brisbane downpour.
Agriculture Minister Blairo Maggi said Saturday Brazil fears that it may lose foreign markets for its agricultural products.
The minister confirmed earlier media reports that the United States, the European Union and China have already requested Brazilian authorities to launch an investigation against the unscrupulous meat producers. However, none of these countries has so far announced that it was closing its market for animal products from Brazil.
Investigators detained a number of meat industry employees, who are suspected of bribing agriculture watchdogs to receive quality certificates for low-quality goods without proper checks. Some of those money were reportedly used to finance political parties.
Police says that the suspects also used acid and other chemicals to make the rotten meat appear fresh.
The mass poisoning, in the impoverished Upper Egypt province of Sohag, north of Luxor, was one of the biggest food-safety cases to hit the country in years.
Officials suspect that school lunches may have been contaminated, and they have opened an investigation. Samples from the lunches, consisting of processed cheese cubes, dry sesame paste bars and loaves of bread, were being analyzed, they added.
Children, most younger than 12, began vomiting within an hour of eating the lunches, Ahmed Nashaat, a Sohag lawmaker, said in a telephone interview. A total of 3,353 children became ill, and at least 50 ambulances were sent to the schools, state news media said. Since then, all but 17 of the students have recovered and been discharged. No deaths or serious complications were reported.
The ordeal revived complaints over the declining quality of Egypt’s public education and health systems. “It is ridiculous how this keeps on happening,” Mr. Nashaat said. “It is not hard to store biscuits and look at the expiration date.”
Apparently in an attempt to deflect some of the anger, the governor of Sohag, Ayman Abdel-Moneim, quickly suspended the distribution of government meals and demanded that changes be made to how they were stored and transported to schools.
Tuesday’s outbreak was one in a long series that have occurred in public schools and universities nationwide recently. Earlier this month, more than 214 students were found to have food poisoning caused by government meals at several schools in the provinces of Minya and Assiut.
Outrage over such instances of perceived government neglect was a main cause of the popular uprising in 2011 that toppled the government of President Hosni Mubarak. “It was not just the parents who were angry in Sohag,” Mr. Nashaat said. “Everyone believes that was the result of neglect. This is leading people to conclude that the people in charge don’t care about their kids.”
Beth Driscoll, MA, CPHI(C), CHA, PMP (I’m not sure what all those initials mean) and PhD Candidate, Policy Studies, at Ryerson University (that’s in Toronto, which is in Canada) writes:
My name is Beth Driscoll, and I am inviting you to participate in a brief, online survey. This survey will take approximately 15 minutes to complete, and investigates the perceptions of Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) auditors’ role in public health. This survey is being conducted for my doctoral research project at Ryerson University.
To participate in this project, you must:
•]be fully certified to conduct GFSI audits for at least one benchmarked scheme;
• have completed at least five GFSI audits of that scheme; and,
• be fluent in English.
The survey is not intended to investigate or assess the GFSI, a GFSI benchmarked Food Safety Scheme, Certification Body, Accreditation Body, government or other organization. Should the responses to the survey questions contain information that would identify one of these organizations, the identifying information will be anonymized prior to use.
Conflict of interest declarations: I am a contract employee for NSF International. This information is being collected solely for my researcher’s graduate degree, and is not being collected for any organization associated with the GFSI or NSF International, nor do I conduct GFSI audits.
If you choose to participate, you will be asked to complete an online survey about your professional identity and your understanding of your role in public health through the audits you conduct to a Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) benchmarked Food Safety Scheme. The survey is confidential is using Opinio, Ryerson University’s Online Survey Program, and all data is stored at Ryerson University. This study has undergone review through the Ryerson University Research Ethics Board and if you have questions about your rights as a research participant, you may contact the Ryerson Research Ethics Board at email@example.com. If you have any questions about the survey please contact the researcher, Beth Driscoll, at firstname.lastname@example.org or Dr. Richard Meldrum at email@example.com before continuing.
Please feel free to forward this email to anyone you feel may be qualified to participate.
A couple of months later, the case count has doubled, and the only advice PHAC has is wash your fucking hands.
The last two major North American outbreaks of E. coli O121 were in flour, last year, and in sprouts, a few years earlier (please, let it be sprouts, please).
Five months into the outbreak, I’m sure the dedicated Canadian public servants have had time to match the genetic fingerprint of the outbreak strain with the U.S.-based outbreaks, but don’t expect PHAC to answer such simple questions.
They could have done whole genome sequencing in the time it took to have miniions craft a press release that said … nothing.
“The Government of Canada is committed to food safety. The Public Health Agency of Canada leads multi-jurisdictional human health investigations of outbreaks and is in regular contact with its federal and provincial partners to monitor and take collaborative steps to address outbreaks.”