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Food Safety News

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Lydia Zuraw

Lydia Zuraw

Lydia Zuraw is a graduate of Northwestern University with a bachelor’s from the Medill School of Journalism.  She was born and raised in the suburbs of Baltimore and lived in Illinois, Scotland and Washington state before returning to the East Coast.  In the past, she worked for NPR’s Science Desk, the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory and The Pacific Northwest Inlander.

Articles Written by Lydia Zuraw

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Lawmakers Introduce Bills to Create Single Food Safety Agency

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Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) have introduced bills in Congress that would establish a single, independent federal food safety agency. Food safety oversight is currently split up among 15 agencies in the Departments of Health and Human Services, Agriculture, and Commerce. The Safe Food Act of 2015 introduced Wednesday in both… Continue Reading

White House Wants to Nearly Double Funding for Antibiotic Resistance Fight

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President Obama wants to nearly double — to more than $1.2 billion — federal funding for combating and preventing antibiotic resistance. The administration is expected to release its full 2016 budget proposal next week, but a fact sheet released Tuesday provided a blueprint for investments in fighting antibiotic resistance — an issue it referred to… Continue Reading

Increasing Food-Safety Education in Schools Could Reduce Foodborne Illness in Kids

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There’s a lack of food-safety education in schools that, if addressed, could help reduce the high rates of foodborne illness among children. Each year, an estimated 48 million Americans contract a foodborne illness, resulting in 128,000 hospitalizations and 3,000 deaths. Vulnerable populations, including children, seniors, pregnant and postpartum women, and those with compromised immune systems, are at… Continue Reading

FSIS Releases New Salmonella, Campylobacter Performance Standards for Poultry

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates that its new pathogen performance standards for Salmonella and Campylobacter in ground poultry and chicken parts will prevent about 50,000 illnesses each year. USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service’s (FSIS) proposed changes to the Salmonella and Campylobacter Verification Testing Program create brand-new standards for Salmonella and Campylobacter in chicken breasts, legs and wings, and… Continue Reading

2.5 Million Pounds of Meat, Poultry Recalled for Pathogen Contamination in 2014

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On Friday, Jan. 16, the U.S. Department of Agriculture published a summary of the meat and poultry recalls issued in 2014. There were 94 recalls in total, and nearly half of them were because of undeclared allergens. Only 16 were due to Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC), Listeria or Salmonella. At least 2,483,873 pounds of products regulated… Continue Reading

Regulatory Accountability Act Passes House, President Threatens Veto

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The U.S. House of Representatives passed the newest version of the Regulatory Accountability Act (RAA) in a 250-175 vote on Tuesday. The bill reforms the government’s process for analyzing and formulating new regulations and guidance documents. Proponents of the bill argue that it will reduce costs and increase transparency in rulemaking, while opponents fear that it… Continue Reading

Coalition Opposes Presidential ‘Fast Track’ to Trade Deal

Critics say TPP could lower food safety standards

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A coalition of House Democrats and environmental, labor, faith, food safety and other groups have intensified their opposition to a provision granting the president “fast track” authority to push the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) through Congress without amendments and with limited debate. TPP is the massive free trade agreement currently under negotiation between the U.S., Australia,… Continue Reading

Animal Cruelty Complaint Filed Against MN Hen Slaughter Plant

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Complaints of inhumane slaughter were leveled at a hen slaughter plant in Butterfield, MN, over the weekend. In an investigation into Butterfield Foods Co., a member of the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) spent 57 days working undercover at Butterfield’s plant for slaughtering “spent hens,” which are egg-laying chickens deemed no longer commercially… Continue Reading

What it Takes to be a ‘Meaningful Messenger’ for Food Safety

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Food-safety messengers need to “hit home, hit the heart and hit hard,” Dana Pitts told attendees of the Consumer Food Safety Education Conference in early December. Until very recently, Pitts was associate director of communications for the National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (NCEZID) at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Division… Continue Reading

Food-Safety Regulatory Forecast for 2015

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In late November, the White House released its “Current Regulatory Plan and the Unified Agenda of Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions” for fall 2014, and it provides a helpful roadmap to 2015 food-safety regulatory actions. The first actions on Food Safety News’ radar are the five of the seven major Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) rules to… Continue Reading