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Foodborne Illness Outbreaks

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Listeria control workshop opens 2017 Food Safety Summit

FSS 2017 Listeria session slide

CHICAGO — There is a war on against deadly Listeria, and the facts on the ground are changing in some dramatic ways. Ten generals in that war took to the stage here Tuesday at 2017 Food Safety Summit for reports on what they called “The Latest in Listeria Control.” Few Americans paid much attention to Listeria until… Continue Reading

California officials warn of botulism risk from herbal teas

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Ten days after county officials alerted the public and four days after the FDA posted a recall notice for deer antler tea linked to botulism cases, the California health department issued a warning about herbal tea from U.S. Deer Antlers Exports and Imports Inc. The two botulism cases in Orange County are not believed to… Continue Reading

Botulism outbreak raises public health concerns in California

Valley Oaks Food and Fuel California botulism

County officials have closed down food and beverage sales at a gas station in California because of an outbreak of botulism poisoning and are urging anyone who has become sick after eating there in recent weeks to immediately seek medical attention. Five people — four of whom ate food from Valley Oaks Food and Fuel… Continue Reading

CDC says soy nut butter outbreak ‘over’ — but threat continues

illustration I.M. Healthy soy nut butter

Although the government has posted its final update on the E. coli outbreak traced to SoyNut Butter Co. products — reporting 32 people across a dozen states confirmed sick —  there is an ongoing threat and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is repeating earlier warnings. “The recalled SoyNut Butter products have long shelf… Continue Reading

Dole’s Springfield shutdown, recalls cost company $36 million

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Because the Dole Food Company is going public, financial documents it has filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission are available showing how much recalls and shutdowns have cost the company’s  Dole Fresh Vegetables unit during the past two years. A 2015 recall of bagged salads distributed in 13 states because a sample of Dole… Continue Reading

‘Fry them’ comments in jury room could get Parnells a new trial

Defense lawyers for executives in peanut butter Salmonella trial say jurors had loose lips

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The conduct of the 2014 jury that convicted Peanut Corporation of America executives delayed sentencing for about year, but in its final analysis the district court found a new trial based on jury misconduct was not warranted. Appellate attorneys for peanut broker Michael Parnell filed lengthy after-hours arguments Monday with the U.S. Court of Appeals… Continue Reading

First of PCA convicted executives begins prison release process

Lightsey, left, and Parnell

Samuel Lightsey, 52, the former manager of the now defunct Peanut Corporation of America processing plant in Blakely, GA, has moved into a Residential Re-entry Management facility in Atlanta a step toward his release from federal prison scheduled for Oct. 1. Lightsey received the lightest prison sentence among the five eanut Corporation of America (PCA) executives and managers… Continue Reading

What are the odds? 840 times more likely for raw milk drinkers

illustration raw milk pathogens

Based on statistics from the five-year period 2009-2014, people who drink unpasteurized, raw milk are 840 times more likely to contract a foodborne illness than those who drink pasteurized milk. The statistics, included in a research report scheduled for publication in the upcoming June issue of “Emerging Infectious Diseases” also show raw milk drinkers are… Continue Reading

25 of Stewart Parnell’s 28-year prison sentence may not stand

USA CONGRESS SALMONELLA

When your clients are all sitting in federal prisons around the country, and you are down to your last written arguments in the appellate courts, it is not time to hold back. That’s roughly where the nation’s most important food safety case finds itself on the day after attorneys for the three Peanut Corporation of… Continue Reading