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Lawsuits & Litigation

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Consumers’ cases against Gravy Train maker consolidated

A class action lawsuit was filed May 1 in Northern California against Big Heart Pet Brands Inc. on behalf of consumers and businesses who bought pentobarbital-contaminated dog food manufactured by the company. Big Heart is owned by the J.M. Smucker Co.  The lawsuit, referred to as a master consolidated complaint, consolidates four similar actions filed… Continue Reading

Outbreak investigation hampered by lack of business records

Snarl of distribution networks, inadequate traceability stymies search for source of romaine

Public health officials continue to be frustrated by a lack of traceability information from romaine lettuce growers and their customers as the investigation into an ongoing E. coli outbreak continues. For three weeks state and federal investigators have been trying to identify the source of the implicated romaine, which has sickened dozens across 16 states…. Continue Reading

Listeria outbreak likely burning out; politicians still adding fuel

Update:  The world’s worst listeriosis outbreak now includes 1,019 laboratory-confirmed cases including 199 deaths. (Listeriosis outbreak situation report_22April 2018_fordistribution) The 1,011 laboratory-confirmed listeriosis cases, including 193 deaths, in South Africa are still creating political fissures in the country. Last week, there was another dust-up with a Member of Parliment (MP) from the opposition Democratic Alliance… Continue Reading

Unusually high percentage of E. coli victims hospitalized

CDC, FDA renew public warnings about chopped romaine lettuce as outbreak spreads to 16 states

An E. coli outbreak traced to chopped romaine lettuce has spread to another five states and public health officials are reporting a hospitalization rate of almost 60 percent, which is twice the usual rate. There are 53 confirmed cases spread across 16 states, as of Wednesday’s update from the federal Centers for Disease Control and… Continue Reading

Both sides now: Opposing views from across the courtroom

Contributed

Editor’s note: This is part of a series of articles leading up to the 20th annual Food Safety Summit. The event, from May 7-10 at the Donald Stephens Convention Center in suburban Chicago, includes certification courses; a trade show with exhibitors from industry, academia and government; an extensive list of seminars and panel discussions; and a… Continue Reading

Parnells’ new lawyer says brothers are ‘entitled to a new trial’

Appeal describes corporate defendants as victims in aftermath of deadly peanut butter outbreak

“Humans are essentially storytellers.” — Walter Fisher It would be unfair to depict the previous appellate work by the Parnell brothers’ attorneys as legal theories thrown against the wall in hopes that something would stick. But, in the first round before the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta, they failed to persuade a… Continue Reading

Cattlemen ask judge to impose mandatory COOL for beef, pork

Opponents who could not see the issue more differently have nonetheless put the decision in the hands of a federal judge who heard the arguments last month, and she has not yet decided.  At issue is whether USDA was wrong to remove mandatory Country of Origin Labeling (COOL) requirements after it was instructed by Congressional… Continue Reading

Victims file suit in listeria outbreak; more illnesses expected

South Africa's elected officials play blame game; WHO urges countries to step up food safety

As the World Health Organization told countries around the world this week to make listeriosis a reportable disease because of the ongoing crisis in South Africa, outbreak victims and their families filed a class action suit against the producers of processed meats that have tested positive Listeria monocytogenes. Meanwhile, corporate officials for Tiger Brands and… Continue Reading