miércoles, 25 de abril de 2012
The implicated frozen raw yellowfin tuna product - known as "tuna scrape" because it is back meat scraped from tuna bones - was imported from India and has been recalled by the California-based distributor, Moon Marine USA. The Nakaochi Scrape resembles ground tuna and is used to make sashimi, ceviche and sushi, particularly "spicy tuna" sushi.
According to the CDC's latest update, the 19 new Salmonella outbreak cases include 14 reported by Massachusetts, two reported by New York and one each reported by Illinois,
To date, a total of 7 clusters at restaurants or grocery stores have been identified where 2 or more unrelated ill persons reported eating in the week before illness. In each cluster, at least one ill person reported eating sushi purchased at the restaurant or grocery store. These clusters are located in 5 states: Connecticut, Maryland, Rhode Island, Texas, and Wisconsin.
Several methods were used to evaluate the association between tuna and illness in this outbreak. To estimate the frequency of consumption of tuna and "spicy tuna" among all sushi eaters, investigators assembled a comparison group from 1) diners who ate at one of the cluster restaurants or grocery stores or 2) a restaurant where a single ill person, who was judged to have a reliable memory, recalled consuming sushi only once in the week before illness. Records were collected on sushi orders that were placed at the same time of day (lunch or dinner) and as close to the date when the ill person ate at the restaurant.
The Salmonella ill people range in age from 4 to 78 years; median age is 30. Sixty-six percent are female. At least 26 have been hospitalized.
martes, 17 de abril de 2012
In a new scientific opinion, experts from EFSA’s Panel on Biological Hazards identify the main Salmonella serovars* in turkeys and indicate that transmission from breeding stock to fattening flocks is an important source of Salmonella infection as well as such sources as contaminated feed or turkey houses.
Through the use of a modeling tool and the analysis of harmonized EU-wide data on Salmonella in animals and on reported cases of human salmonellosis (the Salmonella-derived infection that affects humans), the Panel estimated the relative public health impact of Salmonella transmitted to humans from four different animal sources: turkeys, broiler hens, laying hens and pigs. A reduction of Salmonella levels in 2012 to 1% or less for all the serovars considered in the model in fattening turkey flocks would result in an estimated 2.2% reduction across the EU of all cases of human salmonellosis compared to 2010. The Panel emphasized that the individual EU Member States’ contributions to the estimated reductions vary greatly.
Targets are being set for the reduction of certain Salmonella serovars in different poultry populations and in pigs within the framework of EU legislation on the control of zoonotic diseases (infections or diseases that can be transmitted between animals and humans, for instance by consuming contaminated food).
Among the recommendations on data gathering and surveillance measures, the Panel highlights the need to enhance active surveillance in all EU Member States in order to better estimate the true incidence of human salmonellosis. Human salmonellosis cases may not always be identified as such and can also go unreported.
Source: EFSA, April, 2012
The potential of Salmonella population to rebound on non-washed and washed roma tomatoes and jalapeño peppers in humid storage at 4°C, 10°C, 15°C, 21°C, or 35°C for ≤12 days was investigated.
The initial inoculation levels of Salmonella on peppers and tomatoes were 5.6 and 5.2 log CFU/cm2, respectively. Air-drying of fruit surfaces resulted in contamination levels of 3.9 and 3.7 log CFU/cm2 on inoculated peppers and tomatoes, respectively. At 21°C and 35°C, the levels of air-dried Salmonella inoculums on produce surfaces increased ≥2 log cycles, with the most rapid growth in the first 3 days.
Mechanical washing on rollers (rinsing; R-treatment) or revolving brushes (rinsing and brushing; RB-treatment) with water decreased Salmonella counts by ≥2.5 log CFU/cm2 on both peppers and tomatoes. After R- or RB-treatment, peppers stored at 21°C and 35°C permitted residual Salmonella (≤1.4 log CFU/cm2) to grow to 2.6–3.9 log CFU/cm2. During storage, residual Salmonella (≤1.0 log CFU/cm2) on washed tomatoes increased to 3.1 log CFU/cm2 at 35°C following R-treatment and 3.8 log CFU/cm2 at 21°C following RB-treatment.
Cold storage at 4°C and 10°C effectively prevented the proliferation of Salmonella on both washed and non-washed produce. The current study on jalapeño peppers and roma tomatoes demonstrated that Salmonella population can rebound on produce in humid storage before or after washing. The finding highlights the benefit of uninterrupted cold storage for safer produce operations.
Foodborne Pathogens and Disease, April 2012, 9(4): 361-366
lunes, 16 de abril de 2012
The study included organic and free-range whole chickens and chicken portions from different producers: Aldi, Asda, The Co-operative, Lidl, M&S, Morrisons, Sainsbury’s, Tesco and Waitrose. A total of 193 samples were analyzed one in five (18%) were contaminated with Campylobacter jejuni, while 14% had Listeria monocytogenes and 1.5% with Salmonella spp.
It pointed to its research last year, which revealed that 82% of the public want better control of Campylobacter throughout the supply chain, rather than having to deal with contamination when cooking and handling chicken.
Consumers think the situation is improving but it is still unacceptable that one in five chickens were found to be contaminated with Campylobacter. It is necessary that the risk of contamination will be minimized at every stage of production, because for far too long consumers have been expected to clean up mistakes made during processing.
martes, 10 de abril de 2012
lunes, 9 de abril de 2012
jueves, 5 de abril de 2012
Salmonella can cause diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps 12 to 72 hours after infection. The infection typically lasts 4 to 7 days, and most people are able to recover without treatment. However, some symptoms may be severe, and patients may need to be hospitalized.
martes, 3 de abril de 2012
The test for lettuce requires just a tiny sample of lettuce leaf, also It doesn’t take a trained laboratory technician to perform the test or read the results. If the color changes from pink to bluish, that signals the presence of Salmonella. The test is suitable for use in farm fields and in remote areas of the developing world. We believe it may have enormous potential for rapid, on-site pathogen detection to avoid the distribution of contaminated foods.
To find the bacteria faster, researchers at Jackson State University enlisted gold nanoparticles that are 1 million times smaller than an ant. They attached antibodies similar to those that help the immune system find and fight infections with Salmonella, to the nanoparticles. Viewed under a powerful microscope, the gold nanoparticles look somewhat like individual pieces of popcorn.
When these antibodies encounter Salmonella pathogen, they attach to the outer surface of the bacteria, carrying along their cargo of gold popcorn-shaped nanoparticles. The test, with its pink-to-blue color change, detects those gold nanoparticle-antibody-Salmonella complexes.
The approach also has potential for killing MDR Salmonella, Ray said. When you shine the right wavelength of light into contaminated water, for instance, the gold nanoparticles absorb that light and heat up. Those hot particles burn through the outer membrane of the Salmonella, killing the pathogen.
The researchers first developed the popcorn-shaped particles to find and fight cancer. The shape was chosen because it boosts the signal for detection using something called Raman spectroscopy, which looks at the light given off after atoms or molecules absorb energy. According to the investigators this detection method is useful in other applications of the particles. In science this is called the lightning rod effect, describing how the splayed “tips” of the popcorn shape enhance the signal and make it easier to see. The group has also used the nanoparticles to detect other microbes, like E. coli.
Despite gold’s stature as a precious and very costly metal, only tiny amounts are needed. About $90 worth of gold is enough to make gallons of the solution containing the nanoparticles. And only a few drops of the solution are needed seek out Salmonella pathogen.
The new technology can be commercialized, and a patent is pending. With concerns about the potential health and environmental effects of many kinds of nanoparticles, the team is investigating the effects of gold nanoparticles remaining in purified water, for instance. So far, they have found no short-term toxicity and will be checking on any potential long-term toxicity.
Funding for this research at JSU comes in part from the National Science Foundation.
The National Advisory Committee on Microbiological Criteria for Foods (NACMCF), an interagency committee with outside experts, discussed ground beef purchasing requirements for federal food and nutrition assistance programs -- and unanimously accepted the group's recommendations on safety questions raised by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Agriculture Marketing Service (AMS).
AMS asked NACMCF three questions to help develop microbiological criteria, pathogen testing methodology, and sampling plans for the National School Lunch Program ground beef purchases for 2012-2013:
1. AMS is considering elimination of the requirement to test for Staphylococcus aureus from the Federal Purchase Ground Beef Program and AMS asks NACMCF to provide considerations and scientific discussion regarding this action with respect to public health.
Answer: The committee concluded that the exclusion of S. aureus -specific testing will not negatively impact the safety or quality of ground beef in the National School Lunch Program and recommended that the "criterion be removed from the Federal Purchase Ground Beef Program."
2. Should AMS consider the use of alternative screening procedures beyond those stipulated in the FSIS Microbiology Laboratory Guidebook (MLG), and if so, would the AMS testing program results be comparable to FSIS' verification testing programs, and therefore useful to FSIS? What should be considered in distinguishing acceptable and unacceptable alternative screening procedures? Is it appropriate to allow alternative sample preparation procedures (portion size, enrichment broth, portion to broth ratio, enrichment time and temperature) which differed from the MLG, or which differed by AMS designated laboratory?
Answer. The committee recommended that AMS consider using validated alternative screening methods to "reduce the level of false-positive results and allow for more rapid release of raw product."
3. AMS asks NACMCF to evaluate boneless beef and finished product compliance program lotting and frequency of testing for pathogens and indicators of process control for both raw ground beef to be cooked on-site at schools.
The committee recommended that AMS "maintain high standard supplier control, HACCP implementation, carcass testing, traceability, etc as in current program." Adding, "With the exception of S. aureus testing, no changes to testing of indicator organisms are recommended at this time." The committee also said that, regardless of sampling program, ongoing program review needed to be strengthened.
The NACMCF, established in 1988, provides scientific advice on public health issues relative to the safety and wholesomeness of the U.S. food supply. The committee, chaired by Dr. Elisabeth Hagen, Under Secretary for Food Safety at USDA, serves the USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service, Health and Human Services' Food and Drug Administration and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Department of Commerce's National Marine Fisheries Service, and Department of Defense's Veterinary Service Activity.For a detailed justification for each recommendation, see the NACMCF draft response see: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/PDF/NACMCF_Response_to_AMS_Charge_032312.pdf
Around 100 poultry inspectors gathered outside the U.S. Department of Agriculture on Monday, right under Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack's window, to protest a proposal to expand an inspection system that shifts federal inspectors away from inspecting for quality defects and allows slaughter lines to speed up.
The USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service is responsible for examining all poultry carcasses for blemishes or visible defects before they are further processed. Under the proposed rule, the agency would transfer much of this quality-assurance task over to the poultry plants so that it can devote more of its employees to evaluating the companies' pathogen-prevention plans and bacteria-testing programs.
It basically moves the federal inspector further down the line, to right before the chiller, to make sure there's no fecal material on the birds before they take the plunge into the cooling tank.
FSIS argues that the system, formally known as the HACCP Based Inspection Models Project, or HIMP, will improve food safety and save taxpayer dollars. The consumer group Food & Water Watch, and the inspectors at the rally, take issue with the entire proposal, arguing that it privatizes inspection and puts consumers at risk. A handful of plants have been a part of the HIMP pilot program for 12 years.
According to a peer-reviewed risk assessment, expanding HIMP would save FSIS $85 to $95 million over the next three years and be a $250 million boost to poultry companies, which will be able to crank up line speeds and process birds at a faster pace, all while reducing an estimated 5,200 poultry-caused illnesses each year.
"Cutting the budget does not justify putting the health and safety of consumers and workers in the balance," said Wenonah Hauter, executive director of FWW. "USDA inspectors receive extensive training to protect public health in poultry facilities, but there is no similar requirement for company employees to receive training before they assume these inspection responsibilities in the proposed privatized inspection system. This short-sided thinking could actually cost the federal government more to deal with a potential increase in foodborne illnesses caused by unsanitary, defective poultry and meat."