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What’s in the emergency kit at your child’s school?

School nurse works to raise awareness about need for epinephrine injection pens

food allergies graphic

Editor’s note: This is the second of a two-part series about food allergies and the efforts by public health agencies, schools, legislators and parents to make it easier and safer for allergic individuals to manage risks. To read Part one: “Food allergies threaten lives daily; research gaps and mis information complicate issue” click here. At first,… Continue Reading

Food safety threat in plain sight; counter measures less clear

Food allergies threaten lives daily; research gaps and misinformation complicate issue

illustration child food allergies graphic

Editor’s note: This is the first of a two-part series about food allergies and the efforts by public health agencies, schools, legislators and parents to make it easier and safer for allergic individuals to manage risks. A chronic disease with no known cure. An emerging epidemic that affects up to 15 million people in the… Continue Reading

Make Mine Chocolate, others seek to make Easter safer for all

Public health officials join animal welfare groups in discouraging live animals as Easter gifts

Make Mine Chocolate Easter bunnies

Public health officials warn against it. Animal welfare groups are opposed to it. Year after year it causes hundreds of human illnesses and agonizing deaths for baby chicks, ducks and rabbits. But every spring the practice is resurrected. Giving live animals as Easter gifts has been a tradition for decades, but for the 15th year,… Continue Reading

Michigan sees huge spike in Hepatitis A; vaccinations urged

People who have recently been exposed to Hepatitis A and who have not been vaccinated previously should be administered a single dose of single-antigen Hepatitis A vaccine within two weeks after exposure, according to the CDC. The average incubation period for Hepatitis A is 28 days, but symptoms can appear 15 to 50 days after exposure. (Photo courtesy of the CDC)

An eight-fold increase of Hepatitis A cases in Michigan in recent months has state officials encouraging people to get vaccinated against the sometimes foodborne illness. Most children receive Hepatitis A vaccinations during infancy now, but many adults have not been vaccinated. The vaccine is given in two injections a few months apart. Hepatitis A outbreaks… Continue Reading

On the front lines of food safety — farmworkers have your back

More retailers seek produce, peace of mind from growers certified by the Equitable Food Initiative

EFI strawberry picker

Who better than the people in the front lines to recognize and call out the enemy? That’s the underlying strategy of an approach to food safety that relies on farmworkers to spot possible problems in growing fields and packing sheds. Such problems include deer droppings in the field, manure drift from a nearby field, dirty… Continue Reading

Planting for the local food bank? Take care to do it right

Contributed

garden vegetables in basket

This time of year people who enjoy gardening are thinking about and planning what they will be growing this spring, summer and fall. I know this because I am one of those who has already purchased some of my seeds, and planting time is still a ways off yet. Many gardeners like to donate to… Continue Reading

Something to chew on: FDA, food, and a dose of definitions

Contributed

illustration something to chew on gum

Editor’s note: This column was originally published by the Minnesota Journal of Law, Science & Technology LawSci Forum and is reposted here with permission. To view the original post, click here. Is food medicine? The answer to this simple question is surprisingly complicated. The name of the Food and Drug Administration seems to distinguish between foods… Continue Reading

Montana House committee OKs raw milk bill by 12-11 vote

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-images-goat-milk-image24057054

A bill that would allow the sale of unpasteurized raw milk in Montana is scheduled for a second reading before the state’s full House of Representatives today after earning committee approval by a one-vote margin. The House has until March 30 to advance Rep. Nancy Ballance’s House Bill 325 to the Montana Senate for consideration…. Continue Reading

Juicing is healthy, but easily contaminated by pathogens

women juicing produce

So many fruits. So many veggies. So little time. That’s the dilemma that people who want to eat as healthy as possible face. After all, who really has the time to eat the recommended 5 to 9 servings of fruits or vegetables — 2 1/2 cups of veggies and two cups of fruit — each… Continue Reading

90,000 Hepatitis A follow-up shots coming due in Hawaii

illustration syringes vaccination

More than 90,000 people received the first shot of a two-injection Hepatitis A vaccination in the second half of 2016, and that means more than 90,000 follow-up injections are coming due in the Aloha State. More than two-and-a-half times as many people in Hawaii took Hepatitis A vaccinations this past year compared with 2015, mainly… Continue Reading