Not only oysters; clam-associated vibriosis, USA, 1988–2010

Infections with Vibrio spp. have frequently been associated with consumption of bivalve molluscs, especially oysters, but illness associated with clams has also been well documented. We describe the 2312 domestically acquired foodborne Vibrio infections reported to the Cholera and Other Vibrio Illness Surveillance system from 1988 to 2010. clamsClams were associated with at least 4% (93 persons, ‘only clams’) and possibly as many as 24% (556 persons, ‘any clams’) of foodborne cases. Of those who consumed ‘only clams’, 77% of infections were caused by V. parahaemolyticus. Clam-associated illnesses were generally similar to those associated with other seafood consumption. Clams associated with these illnesses were most frequently harvested from the Atlantic coastal states and eaten raw. Our study describes the contribution of clams to the overall burden of foodborne vibriosis and indicates that a comprehensive programme to prevent foodborne vibriosis need to address the risks associated with clams.

Diego Sanchez blames beef tartare for loss to Myles Jury at UFC 171

Armchair epidemiologist and mixed martial arts fighter Diego Sanchez, says he lost a March 15 fight at UFC 171 in Dallas because of the food he ate the night before.

“I wasn’t myself last night,” Sanchez wrote on Twitter. “I sustained food poisoning from eating a beef tartar with raw quail egg as an appetizer at dinner. This was my own mistake. MMA: UFC 166-Melendez vs SanchezI ordered it thinking I need red meat but raw was the wrong choice. I threw up first at 2 am and all day fight day.”

Nurse in critical condition; E. coli poisoning leaves 7 sick after eating at Marché 27 in Quebec

Now it’s not so much a secret.

But the owner of Montreal restaurant Marche 27 is, according to CBC News, blaming the supplier for delivering contaminated meat after seven people including a nurse who is in critical condition, were sickened with E. coli after consuming beef tartare.

Owner Jason Masso said he’s been serving tartare at Marché 27 for six years and has steak.tartare.jan.14never had a problem.

Not one he knows of.

Val D’Or resident Isabelle St-Jean told CBC Daybreak host Mike Finnerty that she had been sick for several days and went for the hospital for tests, and that’s when she found out she had E. coli poisoning.  

“They saw that I had E. coli … I was sick to my stomach for one week,” she said.

Masso said his restaurant has passed all inspections and he wants to reassure the public that he has addressed the problem and his restaurant is safe. 

“I want to make sure this never happens again,” Masso told CTV News.

“There’s a lady that was hospitalized … like critically ill — that to me is extremely important.”

That’s the risks with raw meat.

Maybe it was something else? French restaurateur in UK says advice on steak tartare ‘final straw’ and closed

Having run the popular basement eatery La Grillade in Wellington Street for 33 years, Guy Martin-Laval hit out at Leeds City Council officials who, he claims, tipped him over the edge in deciding to shut up shop.

The 65-year-old, who failed to reopen the French restaurant after the New Year, claimed he was planning on investing in the troubled venue before he was given guidance around steak.tartare.jan.14the preparation of steak tartare – traditionally prepared with raw meat.

Leeds City Council has said it has “no problem” with the sale of steak tartare but simply advised Mr Martin-Laval to have safe food handling controls in place so to not put customers at risk.

Mr Martin-Laval was quoted as saying: “There have been constant problems with the drains over the last four years and the fish and chip shop next door didn’t help me. The final straw was the city council food and health team insisting that we pre-cook the steak tartare before chopping it and also saying that we couldn’t serve a raw egg in an egg shell with it.”

He added that the recession and the opening of Trinity Leeds had an effect on the business, which had also prompted him to unsuccessfully renegotiate rent.

A council spokesman said: “This advice is not new and is in line with issued guidance provided by the Food Standards Agency.

“We worked closely with the owner of La Grillade to give advice about techniques to effectively 
kill bacteria and prevent cross-contamination, resulting in a much safer way to produce steak tartare.

“Ultimately the food business is responsible for ensuring food safety, which they need to demonstrate to us.”

Why I don’t eat raw: Increase in Vibrio parahaemolyticus illnesses associated with consumption of shellfish from several Atlantic coast harvest areas, United States, 2013

There has been an increase in vibriosis in the U.S. since May 2013.

As of September 30, 104 cases of a specific strain in 13 states with 6 hospitalizations and no deaths were reported to CDC.

Vibrio bacteria live in saltwater. People can get vibriosis after eating raw or undercooked shellfish, particularly oysters. Several species of steamed.oystersVibrio, including Vibrio parahaemolyticus, can cause illness.

There has been an increase in infections caused by a specific strain of Vibrio parahaemolyticus.

These infections occurred among people who, in the week before they became ill, ate raw oysters or raw clams harvested along the Atlantic Coast.

Before 2012, Vibrio parahaemolyticus infections of this strain were rarely associated with shellfish from the Atlantic coast.

Symptoms typically consist of mild to moderate diarrhea, but can sometimes be severe, especially if the bacteria enter the bloodstream.

12-year-old sick with E. coli O157:H7 in Hong Kong; probably undercooked meat

A 12-year-old boy who traveled to Shenzhen on October 12 and consumed undercooked beef in a restaurant there, but described no recent consumption of unpasteurised milk or raw food, nor contact with animals or visit to farms, has been confirmed with E. coli O157:H7 according to Hong Kong’s Centre for Health Promotion

He is currently in stable condition.

Prevalence and counts of Salmonella and enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli in raw, shelled runner peanuts

From the current issue of the Journal of Food Protection:

Three major outbreaks of salmonellosis linked to consumption of peanut butter during the last 6 years have underscored the need to investigate the potential sources of Salmonella contamination in the production process flow. We conducted a study to determine the prevalence and levels of Salmonella in raw peanuts. Composite samples (1,500 g, n = 8) raw, shelled runner peanutsof raw, shelled runner peanuts representing the crop years 2009, 2010, and 2011 were drawn from 10,162 retained 22-kg lot samples of raw peanuts that were negative for aflatoxin. Subsamples (350 g) were analyzed for the presence of Salmonella and enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli. Salmonella was found in 68 (0.67%) of 10,162 samples. The highest prevalence rate (P < 0.05) was for 2009 (1.35%) compared with 2010 (0.36%) and 2011 (0.14%). Among four runner peanut market grades (Jumbo, Medium, No. 1, and Splits), Splits had the highest prevalence (1.46%; P < 0.05). There was no difference (P > 0.05) in the prevalence by region (Eastern versus Western). Salmonella counts in positive samples (most-probable-number [MPN] method) averaged 1.05 (range, 0.74 to 5.25) MPN per 350 g. Enterohemorrhagic E. coli was found in only three samples (0.030%). Typing of Salmonella isolates showed that the same strains found in Jumbo and Splits peanuts in 2009 were also isolated from Splits in 2011. Similarly, strains isolated in 2009 were also isolated in 2010 from different peanut grades. These results indicated the persistence of environmental sources throughout the years. For five samples, multiple isolates were obtained from the same sample that had different pulsed-field gel electrophoresis types. This multistrain contamination was primarily observed in Splits peanuts, in which the integrity of the kernel is usually compromised. The information from the study can be used to develop quantitative microbial risk assessments models.

Miksch, Robert R.; Leek, Jim; Myoda, Samuel, Nguyen; Truyen; Tenney, Kristina; Svidenko, Vladimir; Greeson, Kay; Samadpour, Mansour

Journal of Food Protection®, Number 10, October 2013, pp. 1668-1816 , pp. 1668-1675(8)

Ottawa Public Health wants steak tartare off menus

Over a year after local health units in Ontario cracked down on serving raw ground meat under a fog of mixed policy statements from provincial wonks, Ottawa Public Health is asking all restaurants within the city to immediately stop serving beef tartare after receiving rowan.atkinson.steak.tartarea complaint from someone who got sick after eating the raw French cuisine at a local restaurant.

According to public health officials, the fancy dish, which is made of raw shredded beef before being seasoned and topped with a raw egg, should never have been served in the first place as it is against food safety regulations and could contain bacteria and parasites that may make people sick.

“Under the regulations, raw meat products cannot be served to the public,” said Eric Leclair, a spokesman for Ottawa Public Health. “We have asked that the product not be served as it does not meet the regulations under the Health Protection and Promotion Act. At this time, the restaurateur is co-operating and has voluntarily stopped serving the product.”

While Ottawa Public Health is only investigating one area restaurant — it wouldn’t say which one received the complaint — it’s asking all area restaurants to immediately remove the dish from their menus, should they be offering it.

“I’m sure that this dish is popular in areas of Europe, but it doesn’t meet the food safety regulations we have in place in Ontario,” said Sherry Beadle, a manager of Public Health Inspection at the city.

Dozens of restaurants in Ottawa serve some variation of tartare.

The Wellington Street Gastropub, which offers a well-reviewed beef tartare on its menu, had not heard any objections from Ottawa Public Health about its offering. Nor had steak.tartareMichael Blackie, owner of NeXT in Stittsville, who said the dish was one of his restaurant’s most popular offerings.

“Just because one chef doesn’t know how to cook doesn’t mean we all don’t,” he said, responding to public health’s request that the dish be removed from restaurant menus. “It’s goofy. They are always jumping to extremes.”

It’s not cooked.

Raw food fetish

New York Times columnist and food fashionista Mark Bittman has continued his long history of trading food safety for food porn.

Earlier this month, Bittman wrote of his love of beef tartare, or raw beef. Or lamb. Or fish.

A Toronto chef who asked not to be identified for fear of tipping off the city’s public-health inspectors, gushed in Toronto’s Globe and Mail about his love rowan.atkinson.steak.tartareof the raw pork.

“Raw pork is some of the sweetest-tasting meat I’ve ever had.” At his Italian restaurant, he sources his pork directly from a traditional small-scale farm (at $4.50 a pound, more than double what most restaurants pay for pork) and puts it on his menu as salsiccia cruda – literally, raw sausage. Ground in-house on the same day the pig arrives at the restaurant, the meat is seasoned with salt, pepper, fennel, coriander and chili and served on crostini with olive oil.

He is careful to point out that he would never make the traditional Italian delicacy from ground supermarket meat – “in North America, unless you have a farmer, you don’t know where your pigs are coming from” – and that his pork is fresh out of the slaughterhouse. “Horse on the menu causes much more of a problem then raw pork,” he says.

Because we all eat, so we’re all good at microbial risk assessment.

Food porn trumps food safety, again: Bon Appetite likes it raw

Bon Appetit, the Penthouse of food pornographers (same photo techniques), has compiled a slide show of the 15 most prominent examples of raw meat around the globe.

“In this enlightened age of hygiene and actually knowing how people get sick, raw meat has picked up a regrettable reputation. The elegance of a nice steak.tartaresteak tartare, mixed up tableside, has been mostly forgotten, and some people even (horror of horrors) ask for perfectly nice pieces of beef to be ruined into well-doneness. But in other parts of the globe (and even some parts of America), the raw meat dish tradition is going strong.”

Like porn, it gets redundant after a while.