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Consumer Reports: Tests Find 60 Percent of Frozen Shrimp Contaminated With Bacteria

Raw, wild-caught shrimp from U.S., Argentina had lowest bacteria levels of all samples tested

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A new Consumer Reports (CR) study released Friday found that 60 percent of 342 samples of frozen shrimp it tested contained Salmonella, Vibrio, Listeria, or E. coli, and 2 percent tested positive for the superbug MRSA (Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus). For its new report, “How Safe is Your Shrimp?,” CR researchers bought 284 raw and 58 cooked… Continue Reading

FDA Kicks Off the ‘Year of the Food Safety Modernization Act’

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In front of hundreds of food industry and trade association representatives in Washington, D.C., on Thursday, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) presented its unified plan to roll out and implement the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). Signed by President Obama in January 2011, FSMA will bring about the most sweeping changes to the U.S. food… Continue Reading

Coming USDA Catfish Inspections Raise Question: Could Shrimp Be Next?

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If food safety put catfish under USDA inspection, can shrimp be far behind? That question is coming into focus this week after one of USDA’s top two food safety officials told a gathering of food policy wonks on Tuesday that the final rule for the agency’s takeover of catfish inspections is coming “a little into… Continue Reading

A Look Back at Food Safety During Obama’s First Six Years

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Since the Obama administration took over the executive branch more than six years ago, foodborne illnesses from meat, poultry and eggs — products regulated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture — has been falling. In fact, just from fiscal year 2013 to 2014, illnesses from meat and poultry has fallen by 10 percent, according to… Continue Reading

Contaminated Fresh Spinach Outruns Confusing Recall Notices

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Contaminated fresh produce often makes its way into consumers faster than the product can be effectively recalled. An example of how this happens occurred earlier this month with fresh spinach produced by the Salinas, CA-based Taylor Farms — the winner for the past two years of the Safe Quality Foods (SQF) Institute’s “Primary Producer” award… Continue Reading

Top Food Safety Officials Weigh in on Key Issues

Q&A session at National Food Policy Conference

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At the risk of sounding naive, Michael Taylor said Tuesday that he’s still feeling “great” about the progress made on the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). As Deputy Commissioner for Foods at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Taylor knew he was in front of a tough audience since he said it during a question-and-answer session with a… Continue Reading

EPA May Recommend Testing Food Products for Common Herbicide

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According to a media report on Monday, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is considering recommending that the federal government sample food products for glyphosate, the most commonly used herbicide in the world and the active ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup. “Given increased public interest in glyphosate, EPA may recommend sampling for glyphosate in the future,” the… Continue Reading

Research Funded to Help Control Contamination of Low-Moisture Foods

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A University of Maine researcher has received a $4.9-million grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the National Institute of Food and Agriculture to develop ways of using non-thermal technologies to control microbial contamination of low-moisture foods. Dr. Vivian Wu, a professor of food science, will be lead researcher on a five-year project to explore… Continue Reading

Food Safety Legislation Continues Brisk Pace Set Last Year

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Texas will likely find out today if the third time is the charm for Republican state Rep. Dan Flynn’s (no relation) bill to allow raw milk to be sold at farmer’s markets and directly to consumers in their homes. The bill is scheduled to be heard this morning in the Public Health Committee, where a… Continue Reading

25 Salmonella Cases Possibly Linked to Raw Tuna Sushi in California

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There are 18 confirmed cases of Salmonella Paratyphi in Southern California, including seven in Los Angeles County, four in Orange and Ventura counties, two in Riverside County, and one in Santa Barbara County. Seven other people sickened are from other states but had traveled to the area, according to the Ventura County Public Health Department. Five have… Continue Reading