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Dave Babcock graduated cum laude from the University of Massachusetts in 1991 and received his Juris Doctor from the University of Washington Law School, graduating with Honors in 1997. Since joining Marler Clark in 2001, Dave's practice has focused on multiple party complex litigation, most commonly related to food-borne illness outbreaks. He has written several articles about food-borne illnesses and food-borne illness litigation for such publications as The Journal of Environmental Health and Trial Magazine.

An appeals court in Ontario, Canada is reviewing the 2009 conviction of two men for “serving food unfit for human consumption.”   A central question on appeal is the incubation period for E. coli O157:H7 infections–in other words, how long after consumption of contaminated food someone falls ill.

For starters, it is interesting to note the…

When contaminated food is placed into the stream of commerce, it is not only those who consume the food who will become injured.   For every serving of lettuce or ground beef contaminated with E. coli O157:H7 and each serving of sprouts or peanut butter contaminated with Salmonella, there is a significant chance that someone beyond …

Memorial Day will soon be here.  Where I grew up, this meant greeting the sunshine and warm weather with the first barbecue of the season.  Here in Seattle, we still pull out the grill, but occasionally while donning wool, Gore-Tex, and an umbrella.  Safe food preparation is just as important, and perhaps more challenging in …

A senate panel last week unanimously approved the “Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010,” clearing it for a final vote.   The legislation is a re-vamping of the Child Nutrition Act, originally passed in 1966.  Portions of the original act were permanent, while others required re-authorization in five year increments.  The school lunch program reaches roughly …

The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), which makes up part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), has issued a press release recognizing World Kidney Day on March 11.  The awareness-raising day occurs during National Kidney Month. 

According to NIDDK, “Chronic kidney disease affects approximately 23 million adults in the …

With the U.S. Congress back in session, there is hope that work on food safety legislation will soon pick up steam.  One of the issues that will be part of that discussion is “traceability.”  In the food safety context, the term is meant to refer to the ability to track specific food within the chain …

USA Today recently reported on the remarkable story of repeated outbreaks of illness in school children associated with Del Rey flour tortillas.  Despite repeated problems, neither the company nor health officials took steps to remove the product from school lunch programs for an extended period of time.

Unfortunately, this glaring lack of concern for the …

So, let’s say I was making you dinner, and in preparing one of the ingredients was “fixed to a column by the use of a synthetic fixing agent, glutaraldehyde.”  Even if I told you that I washed off all the “unreacted glutaraldehyde,” would you be willing to call the dinner I made you “natural?”  …

I know you already knew this, but it’s National Healthcare Foodservice Workers Week.  

All sarcasm aside, the importance of safe food handling practices for healthcare workers is likely underrated.  While safe food is important to all of us, healthcare food service workers serve a particularly vulnerable population.  The elderly, in particular, are foremost among…

Fresh off the first weekend of the return of college football, and with kids heading back to school, the Michigan Department of Agriculture (MDA) has two useful press releases to keep our food safe this fall.  Taking these tips together with some of what we have learned at Marler Clark, you get a pretty good …