In case you missed it…

TAINTED is now available at all major on-line book sellers, and reached #1 New Release status in its Amazon category on Launch Day, December 2nd.

A Short Excerpt

Something Rotten in the State of Iowa

The CDC first became aware of an unusual rise in Salmonella Enteritidis infections in July 2010. Epidemiological and traceback investigations pointed the finger of suspicion at two Iowa-based suppliers of shell eggs: Quality Egg, LLC (also known as Wright County Egg) and Hillandale Farms of Iowa, Inc.

Alerted by the CDC, the FDA began a detailed inspection of Quality Egg on August 12th. They encountered an egg-laying farm overrun with rodents and birds. Henhouses and buildings used to store feed grain were in a state of disrepair, with manure seeping through the concrete foundation of one of the laying houses. Uncaged chickens ambled across an eight-foot high pile of manure to access the egg-laying area.

The situation confronting inspectors when they began their inspection of Hillandale Farms on August 19th was just as bad. Uncaged hens tracked manure into the henhouses, some of which had structural damage. There was standing water adjacent to the manure pit, and liquid manure was leaking into one of the henhouses.

It surprised no one when environmental samples collected at both Quality Egg and Hillandale Farms tested positive for Salmonella Enteritidis.

Quality Egg announced a recall on August 13th, and expanded the scope of the recall on August 18th. Hillandale followed suit with its own recall notice on August 20th.

TAINTED

From Farm Gate to Dinner Plate, Fifty Years of Food Safety Failures

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Official Launch Day for TAINTED

TAINTED

From Farm Gate to Dinner Plate, Fifty Years of Food Safety Failures

Salmonella in eggs. Listeria in deli meats. Melamine in milk. Cyclospora in lettuce.

In a world where irrigation water is contaminated by run-off from cattle feedlots and where food processors cut corners, the food preparation skills we learned from our parents and grandparents are no longer good enough to keep us safe.

Using a variety of foodborne disease outbreaks, often illustrated with the stories of individual victims, TAINTED explores the ways in which food becomes contaminated. Some of the stories – such as the deadly 1993 Jack in the Box outbreak – will be very familiar. Others will not.

In this update to her 2007 book, Food Safety: Old Habits, New Perspectives, Phyllis Entis draws on nearly five decades of experience to explain how our regulatory systems have failed us, and to talk about what can be done to protect consumers from unsafe food.

About the Author

A graduate of McGill University and the University of Toronto, Phyllis Entis received her introduction to the field of food safety at the hands of Canada’s Health Protection Branch, where she spent the first seven years of her professional life immersed in Salmonella, Staphylococcus, E. coli and other bad actors from the microbial world.

Entis left government work to co-found (with her husband) QA Life Sciences, a company specializing in rapid testing methods for foodborne bacteria. For the next twenty-two years, she worked closely with representatives of Health Protection Branch, the US Food and Drug Administration and various state agencies to gain official sanction for the use of rapid testing methods in government and industry settings.

In 2001, Entis turned to writing. Her first book, Food Microbiology—The Laboratory, was published in 2002 by the Food Processors Institute. It was followed five years later by Food Safety: Old Habits, New Perspectives, which was released by the American Society for Microbiology Press in January 2007.

Since 2007, Entis has written about food safety issues for several publications, including Food Safety News, The Bark, and eFoodAlert. She has also found the time to write and release a 5-book mystery series, The Damien Dickens Mysteries.

In TAINTED, Entis has combined her decades of experience in food safety with the story-telling skills honed during her career as a mystery writer to revamp and update the wealth of information contained in Old Habits, and to produce a food safety narrative that is both educational and accessible.

A Short Excerpt

Chapter 3 – Betrayal

Sarah Lewis and her entire family attended a celebratory dinner at a local restaurant on May 29, 2010 to mark her sister Stacey’s college graduation. The next night, Sarah’s world turned upside down.

Already feeling unwell on the evening of May 30th, Sarah went to bed early. She awakened during the night, suffering from vomiting and severe diarrhea. The next day, Sarah’s mother, who lived nearby, took her to an urgent care facility. Twenty minutes later, she was admitted to hospital and was later diagnosed with salmonellosis.

Badly dehydrated and in enormous pain from her inflamed bowels, Sarah was moved to the hospital’s ICU. While there, she developed severe tachycardia (abnormally rapid heartbeat), and was moved to the critical care heart unit, where she spent three days.

When Sarah was finally discharged in time to attend her daughter’s preschool graduation, she thought the worst was behind her.

About 2½ weeks later, she was back in the hospital, still suffering from severe dehydration. She was released after five days.

The antibiotics Sarah took to combat her Salmonella infection stripped her digestive system of its normal population of protective bacteria, resulting in her becoming infected with Clostridium difficile (C. diff), a bacterium which causes severe diarrhea and cramping. A fourteen-day antibiotic regimen took care of the C. diff; however, the Salmonella was more resilient. Four months later, Sarah still was on five to ten different medications daily to combat the infection and control her symptoms.

Sarah Lewis was the first recorded California victim of a Salmonella Enteritidis outbreak that sickened more than 1,900 people across the United States.

The restaurant where Stacey’s graduation banquet was held had purchased custard tarts from a local bakery. Ordinarily, the bakery used a pasteurized liquid egg mixture to make the tarts. However, on the day they prepared the dessert items for the graduation dinner, the bakery ran out of pasteurized egg mix and used fresh, raw shell eggs instead. Eggs that most likely had come from Iowa.

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Recalls and Alerts: June 1 – 4, 2019

Here is today’s list of food safety recalls, product withdrawals, allergy alerts and miscellaneous compliance issues. The live links will take you directly to the official recall notices and company news releases that contain detailed information for each recall and alert.

If you would like to receive automatic email alerts for all new articles posted on eFoodAlert, please submit your request using the sidebar link.

United States

Food Safety Recall: The Coca-Cola Company recalls Suja Kombucha, Ginger Lemon (15.2 oz; Date code 06/25/19 UX; UPC 008-18617-02023-2), Suja Kombucha, Peach Ginger (15.2 oz; Date code 07/27/19 UX; UPC 008-18617-02034-8) and Suja Kombucha, Mixed Berries (15.2 oz; Date code 07/29/19 UX; UPC 008-18617-02036-2) due to foreign matter contamination.

Food Safety Recall: Publix at Lake Gibson Shopping Center recalls all ground beef and pork products (Sell by June 3, 2019) due to foreign matter (plastic or metal) contamination.

Canada

Allergy Alert (Update): T-Brothers Food And Trading Ltd. recalls certain Daesang brand rice seasoning mixes due to undeclared egg. Please refer to the recall notice for a complete list of affected products.

Allergy Alert: Seoul Trading Corporation recalls ChoripDong brand Frozen Par Fried Fish Cake (400g; Product code 2019.12.29; UPC 7 6189860521 9) due to undeclared egg.

Allergy Alert: Seoul Trading Corp. recalls certain Daesang brand rice seasoning mixes due to undeclared egg. Please refer to the recall notice for a complete list of affected products.

Food Safety Recall: MyChopChop recalls MyChopChop brand “Grounded Peper” (100g; All units sold up to and including June 3, 2019) due to Salmonella contamination.

Food Safety Recall: Marché Lambert IGA extra recalls certain ground meats and products containing ground meat due to foreign matter (metal) contamination. Please refer to the recall notice for a complete list of affected products.

Food Safety Recall: Ecoideas Innovations Inc. recalls Apricot Power brand Bitter Raw Apricot Seeds and Apricot Seed Meal due to natural toxin amygdalin. Excessive consumption may cause cyanide poisoning. Please refer to the recall notice for a complete list of affected products.

Food Safety Recall: Distribution Farinex (113712 Canada Inc.) recalls Gelsius brand IQF Raspberries (Frozen) (5 x 1 kg; Lot #002; Batch dates 06/06/2018 and 30/05/2018; UPC 01815703620 and 01815003620, respectively) due to Norovirus contamination. The recalled product was supplied to hotes, restaurants and institutions in New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nunavut, Ontario, and Quebec.

Food Safety Recall: Le Butterblume recalls SMOOTHIE AUX FRAMBOISES / Raspberry Smoothie (250 mL; Sold up to and including June 2, 2019) due to Norovirus contamination.

Europe

Allergy Alert (Germany): Wilhelm Kisker GmbH recalls Psenner Bombardino 18 % (0.7 L; Lot #18325) due to undeclared milk and egg.

Food Safety Recall (Belgium): Maisonie recalls Maisonie brand pudding à la vanille avec spéculoos / Vanilla pudding with spéculoos (a traditional Dutch and Belgium cookie, with spices like ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon and clover*) (130g; Lots 20192100 – 20192101- 20192102), due to Listeria monocytogenes contamination.

Food Safety Recall (Denmark): Midsona Danmark A/S recalls two types of urtekram rice cakes due to elevated arsenic levels. Please refer to the recall notice for a complete list of affected products.

Food Safety Recall (France): SODEBO recalls certain Toque du chef brand pizzas (470g) due to foreign matter (metal) contamination. Please refer to the recall notice for a complete list of affected products.

Food Safety Recall (France): Intermarché recalls Maredoc brand Moules Italie SAC (10kg; Lot 2107292; Pack date 28/05/2019) due to Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning.

Food Safety Recall (France): Carrefour recalls Filière Qualité Carrefour brand Barquettes de moules de corde (1.4 kg; Lot 10732947; Best before 06/06/2019) due to Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning.

Food Safety Recall (France): SODEBO recalls Sodebo brand PIZZA LA PIZZ Jambon Emmental Prix Choc (470g; Best before 02/06/2019) due to foreign matter (metal) contamination.

Food Safety Recall (France): SODEBO recalls Sodebo brand PIZZA LA PIZZ Jambon Emmental (470g; Best before 02/06/2019) due to foreign matter (metal) contamination.

Food Safety Recall (France): SODEBO recalls Sodebo brand PIZZA LA PIZZ Jambon Champignons de Paris (470g; Best before 02/06/2019) due to foreign matter (metal) contamination.

Food Safety Recall (France): SODEBO recalls Sodebo brand PIZZA LA PIZZ 4 fromages (470g; Best before 03/06/2019) due to foreign matter (metal) contamination.

Food Safety Recall (UK): Müller UK recalls Cadbury Dairy Milk Cheesecake (2 x 85g; Use by 5 June, 6 June, 11 June 2019) and Cadbury Dairy Milk Caramel Cheesecake (2 x 85g; Use by 5 June, 6 June, 11 June 2019) due to Listeria monocytogenes contamination.

Asia, Africa and the Pacific Islands

Food Safety Recall (Hong Kong): Etak International Ltd recalls Johnsonville brand JALAPEÑO CHEDDAR Smoked Sausage (14 oz; Best before June 9, 2019; Product of USA) due to foreign matter contamination.

Australia and New Zealand

Allergy Alert (Australia): Mobu Enterprises Pty Ltd trading as OLÉ Mexican Foods recalls La Banderita White Corn Street Tacos (Best Before 18/06/2019, 02/07/2019, 16/07/2019, 29/07/2019) due to undeclared gluten.

Food Safety Recall (New Zealand): Samurai Bowl recalls Samurai Bowl Miso Ramen, Samurai Bowl Spicy Miso, Samurai Bowl Original Ramen, and Samurai Bowl Tonketsu (820g; All batches and dates) due to possible Staphylococcus enterotoxin contamination.

*My thanks to Simone Hertzberger, Chief Editor of the Dutch Flemish Food Safety Newsletter for the information on spéculoos.