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Canada, Ireland Top Food Safety World Ranking

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A new, comprehensive report ranks Canada and Ireland as the top countries in food safety performance. The document, produced by The Conference Board of Canada’s Centre for Food in Canada in collaboration with the University of Guelph’s Food Institute, ranked 17 countries based on 10 food safety performance indicators across risk assessment, management and communication. France,… Continue Reading

Studies Find Reusable Produce Containers Often Contaminated

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Reusable plastic containers used by farmers to ship fresh produce from farms to grocery stores have gained wide usage in the last decade, effectively replacing corrugated boxes with a more environmentally friendly alternative. But two studies — one in Canada and one in the U.S. — have found serious problems with the general sanitation and… Continue Reading

Pharmacopeial Convention Publishes Guidance for Combatting Food Fraud

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The U.S. Pharmacopeial Convention (USP) Monday released a comprehensive plan to combat food fraud for monetary gain. The USP said the new guidance is designed to help food manufacturers and regulators pinpoint which food ingredients are most likely to be adulterated by a supplier, and to advise the best way to prevent this act — officially known… Continue Reading

The Search for Alternatives to Antibiotics

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Ask any doctor or veterinarian to rate the important medical discoveries of the past century, and antibiotics would surely be at or near the top of the list. In this century, too, antibiotics are expected to remain an essential tool for treating animal and human diseases. But the “miracle of antibiotics” is being threatened. There… Continue Reading

Food Safety and Socioeconomic Status: Is There a Link?

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Curious about how race and socioeconomic factors factor into foodborne illness risk, a number of researchers over the past few years have looked at foodborne illness risk among low-income and minority populations. Study findings show increased risk among minority populations, but researchers experience difficulty ascertaining whether disparities exist at the income level, mainly because of… Continue Reading

How Culture-Independent Diagostics Threaten Public Health Surveillance

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Traditional methods for diagnosing foodborne illness infections such as Salmonella, Campylobacter and E. coli involve cultivating patient samples in an artificial nutrient medium. But tests that don’t require isolates from pure culture are becoming increasingly popular. There are different kinds of culture-independent diagnostic tests (CIDTs), but the type of that public health folks think will really… Continue Reading

Environmental Working Group Releases First ‘Dirty Dozen’ List for Food Additives

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The Environmental Working Group – famous for its list of produce most likely to be contaminated with pesticides – has now released a “Dirty Dozen” guide for food additives. There are more than 10,000 additives in food distributed in the U.S., and EWG is trying to highlight “some of the worst failures of the regulatory… Continue Reading

Publisher’s Platform: Will Whole Genome Sequencing Solve More Outbreaks?

Opinion

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“No illnesses have been reported to date.” How many times have we read a food recall notice posted on either the FDA or FSIS websites and written by the companies recalling the product who use that self-serving statement?  I would say most of the time. In the past few months the CDC has reported three… Continue Reading

Ag, Vet Colleges Team Up for Antibiotic Resistance Task Force

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A new task force created by two education associations will try to address antibiotic resistance in production agriculture. The Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) and the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges (AAVMC) have come together to advise the federal government on an antibiotic resistance research agenda and to help disseminate information to… Continue Reading

Penn State Receives Anonymous $1M Donation Dedicated to Food Science

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Pennsylvania Sate University’s food science department received a $1 million dollar anonymous donation in honor of a professor emeritus in the department, announced the university Tuesday. The large gift was designated in honor of former Penn State food science professor Philip Keeney, who became famous at the school in 1955 for teaching the Penn State… Continue Reading