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Food Safety News

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vegetables

Study: Washing Utensils Between Uses Important for Safer Produce

Poor hygiene and improper food preparation can lead to foodborne illnesses at home. The first step of the government’s safe food handling advice to consumers is to wash hands before and after handling food and clean cutting boards, dishes, utensils and countertops with hot soapy water after preparing each food item. But the U.S. Food… Continue Reading

Studies Find Reusable Produce Containers Often Contaminated

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

Tested CA Produce Shows Little or No Detectable Pesticide Residues

The California Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) announced Tuesday that the majority of 2013 produce samples it tested had little or no detectable pesticide residues and posed no health risk to the public. Ninety-five percent of all California-grown produce, sampled by DPR in 2013, was in compliance with the allowable limits, the agency stated. DPR tested… Continue Reading

Aussie Listeria Tests Led to Recall of Likely Already Consumed California Fruit

Back in the day, before the fresh fruit and produce industry managed to kill it, the Microbiological Data Program (MDP) came under fire from growers for not providing timely results, sometimes resulting in recalls of fruit that consumers had already eaten. That was 18 months ago and MDP — the joint venture of about 10… Continue Reading

Families in WIC Nutrition Program to Get More Fresh Fruits, Veggies

Families enrolled in the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) nutrition program will be able to get more fresh fruits and vegetables beginning next month, thanks to changes in the program’s “food packages,” which are outlined in a recently published USDA final rule. Under the revisions, the cash value of the fruit and vegetable vouchers for… Continue Reading

Cyclospora Has Sickened 235 in Midwest Since June, Health Officials Say

The rare parasite cyclospora has caused at least 235 illnesses in six midwestern states since mid-June, according to state health department reports Friday. On Thursday, that number stood at 206, including case counts in Iowa, Texas and Nebraska. Illnesses were known to have occurred in Wisconsin, but the number of cases there had not yet… Continue Reading

NC Farm Bill Assumes Growers Are Not to Blame for Food Illnesses

States have farm bills too, and North Carolina’s 2013 edition shows they can be significant. Senate Bill 638, known as the NC Farm Bill of 2013, takes a big bite out of any potential food safety liability fruit and vegetable growers might face while giving more legal protection to those involved in equine and animal… Continue Reading

Processing Aids for Fresh Produce: Safety Buffers Between Farm and Table

Nutrition labels on items in the produce section tend to be short, if not absent altogether. While cereals, soups and sauces come with long lists of ingredients on their packaging, an apple doesn’t need an ingredient list for consumers to know what they’re buying (although it arrived at the grocery store in a labeled package),… Continue Reading

Digging Into the FDA’s Proposed Rules for Produce

Food Safety News examines the potential impact of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s newly proposed produce rules, mandated by the Food Safety Modernization Act of 2011. Part of the Food Safety Modernization Act, which has the goal of reducing the incidence of foodborne illness in the U.S., is an update to requirements for produce… Continue Reading

How Do Pathogens Get Into Produce?

Leafy greens, lettuce, cantaloupes, mangoes and strawberries. These are just some of the foods that have sickened or even killed people when they were contaminated with foodborne pathogens such as E. coli, Listeria and Salmonella. Amidst the confusing swirl of information about these and other produce outbreaks, the question arises: Were some of these pathogens inside… Continue Reading