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USDA Plans to Begin Catfish Inspections in March 2016


Long-awaited U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) catfish inspections, mandated by Farm Bills since 2008, will begin next March, according to a final rule establishing an inspection program for fish in the order Siluriformes, including catfish. The final rule, which applies to both domestically raised and imported Siluriformes fish, was developed by USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection… Continue Reading

Nestlé Plan Aims to Reduce Risk of Worker Abuse by Seafood Suppliers

Balinese fishermen

Nestlé S.A. plans to start cracking down on slavery and other human rights and labor abuses identified during a recent year-long investigation. The Swiss transnational food and beverage company announced the plan on Monday, Nov. 23, 2015. These abuses involve poor migrant workers from Asian countries who are reportedly sold or induced into virtual slavery… Continue Reading

Study: E. Coli Can Transfer Antibiotic Resistance to Other Bacteria


Scientists have discovered a gene in E. coli that makes it resistant to a class of “last-resort” antibiotics known as polymyxins. The gene can also transfer resistance to other epidemic pathogens such as K. pneumoniae and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. According to research published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases, the mcr-1 gene is widespread in Enterobacteriaceae samples from pigs in… Continue Reading

First World Antibiotic Awareness Week Focuses on Education

WHO_HWC_ 6x infographics_22.10.15

This week, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the governments of several countries want people to learn more about antibiotics. Antibiotic resistance is one of the biggest threats to global health today, and, while it occurs naturally, misuse of antibiotics in humans and animals accelerates the process. Monday kicked off the first World Antibiotic Awareness… Continue Reading

FDA Warning Letters: Seafood Importer and Low-Acid Foods Processor

FDA Warning

In its most recently posted warning letters, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) put a seafood importer in New York and a processor of thermally processed low-acid foods in Mexico on notice that they have not been adequately following federal regulations. On Aug. 12, 2015, FDA officials in College Park, MD, wrote to Procesamiento Especializado De… Continue Reading

EFSA Finds Glyphosate ‘Unlikely to Cause Cancer in Humans’


Europe’s gardeners and farmers probably won’t have their Monsanto Roundup weed killer or other similar herbicides taken away from them now that the influential European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has found that the ingredient glyphosate is unlikely to cause cancer in humans. Glyphosate, which has been around since the 1970s, is used in herbicides around the… Continue Reading

UK’s Food Standards Agency Monitoring Tweets to Detect Outbreaks Sooner


The U.K.’s Food Standards Agency (FSA) has reportedly been systematically checking for Twitter hashtags such as #sick and #barf in order to identify potential foodborne illness outbreaks. According to the agency’s chief scientific adviser, FSA is working with the National Health Service to monitor certain tweets via special software as a way of getting on to problems… Continue Reading

Food Traceability Tool Developed in New Zealand Uses QR Codes

Woman scanning food with phone at store

A traceability system developed in New Zealand uses Quick Response (QR) codes so consumers with smartphones can have an easily accessible history of the source and status of an item, whether it happens to be a dairy product, a car, or any other merchandise. IDlocate is a relatively new product developed by a company based in Auckland, NZ. Companies implementing the… Continue Reading

Halal Beef Scheme Could Have Millions of Potential Victims in Asia


Ahead of the yet-to-be scheduled sentencing of the defendants, the government wants to be relieved of the burden of notifying individual victims of a scheme that altered and falsified the true USDA establishment numbers on beef products exported from the United States. Government attorneys have asked the U.S. District Court for Northern Iowa to allow… Continue Reading

Food Safety Groups Oppose Trans-Pacific Trade Partnership


The full text of the Trans-Pacific Trade Partnership (TPP) was released last week, and after initial reviews of the proposed treaty, concerns raised by food safety advocates during the negotiations have not been mollified. Debbie Barker, International Programs Director for the Center for Food Safety, says the predominant issues with TPP are the Rapid Response… Continue Reading