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In the wake of the Jack in the Box E.coli outbreak 20 years ago, the USDA mandated food safe handling labels on packages of raw meat and poultry to educate the general public—however, the information on these labels may have been incomplete from the start
Departments: Move Over, Salmonella
You’re not likely to see a picture of Campylobacter in a post office lobby, but as of July 2011, the FSIS has introduced a new performance standard to reduce the prevalence of Campylobacter, similar to the one used for Salmonella for years.
Departments: Multiply Your Meat and Poultry Attack
Intervention strategies have been on a rapid development track during the past decade, with a number of companies not only adopting the strategies in their processing plants but, in many cases, making them integral components of their hazard analysis and critical control points (HACCP) plans.
Departments: The 100% Solution to Worker Testing
Employee training has always posed challenges for food companies. Consider language, for example. English may be a second language for many employees, which raises the issue of worker comprehension. Do employees really understand the concepts and procedures being taught, particularly the importance of product safety?
Departments: HACCP Principles: Benchmark for Food Safety
The hazard analysis and critical control points (HACCP) food safety system was developed by the Pillsbury Company, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and the U.S. Army Natick Laboratories in the late 1960s to develop foods for the space program.
Columns: Let Your Voice Be Heard
Fulfilling another key recommendation of the president’s Food Safety Working Group, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced new performance standards to reduce Salmonella and Campylobacter in young chickens (broilers) and turkeys. The new standards, which are expected to prevent tens of thousands of illnesses yearly, represent the most significant food safety development from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) in 15 years. The USDA has cut the target levels for Salmonella in poultry by...
The United States is often said to have a two-pronged food safety regulatory system, with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) responsible for inspecting meat, poultry, and eggs, while the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) oversees the other fresh and processed foods that make up 80% of the food supply. This system leads to frequently cited inspection gaps and overlaps that critics say contribute to food safety problems: The FDA oversees fresh eggs, but the USDA inspects processed egg products;...
Features: The Food Safety Countdown
Long-awaited legislation to reform and modernize the nation’s food safety system will likely be put off until next year while the Senate continues to grapple with healthcare reform and other contentious issues.
Features: Food Fight
Among the myriad of issues being considered in Congress, few touch the lives of Americans as directly as food quality. So it should come as no surprise that impassioned debate surrounds some of the more than a dozen bills under consideration in the House and Senate to reform and modernize the nation’s food safety system. While everyone agrees that safer food is a laudable goal, there is far less consensus as to how, or even whether, it can be achieved.
Departments: HACCP Programs and Practices Evolve
This article is based on three webinars from The Microbiology Webinar Series, co-sponsored by AES-Chemunex, Inc. and Carpe Diem, A Wiley Company. Donald Schaffner, PhD, professor and extension specialist at Rutgers University’s School of Biological and Environmental Sciences, was the keynote speaker for both “Challenges in Implementing HACCP: Validation and Verification, Quantitative Risk Assessment: Is it the Next Step After HACCP?” and “Use of Predictive Microbiology to Support...