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Infectious prions, the lethal microbes that cause Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease in humans and bovine spongiform encephalopathy (mad cow disease) in animals, can be eradicated with a technique that has long been used to inactivate pathogens in drinking water.
Proposed regulations for the livestock and poultry industries—most prominently those involving animal housing, environmental regulations, the use of antimicrobials and other drugs, livestock trading, and labor regulations—could increase production costs by 10% to 25%, potentially costing consumers as much as $16 billion annually, claims a new report commissioned by the United Soybean Board.
Chopped and ground meat and poultry products now bear the same on-package nutrition labels consumers commonly see on most other packaged foods.
Features: Do Nanoparticles Affect Digestion?
Nanoparticles are routinely added to food products and used in food packaging, but the impact they might have on health is still not well understood.
It’s been used to crack the code of some of the most troublesome foodborne illness outbreaks in the world, including the rare and lethal E. coli hybrid strain that began in Germany and spread throughout Europe, Canada, and the U.S. last summer, as well as the outbreak of listeriosis traced to cantaloupes from Colorado-based Jensen Farms last autumn.
Rather than eliminating the 10-year-old Microbiological Data Program, which tests about 15,000 samples of produce such as sprouts, lettuce, tomatoes, and cantaloupe for pathogens annually, the USDA should expand the program, said Alfredo G. Torres, PhD, associate professor in the departments of microbiology and immunology and pathology at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston in Texas.
Electron-beam irradiation can inactivate rotavirus and poliovirus on lettuce and spinach, says a new study from researchers at the National Center for Electron Beam Research at Texas A&M University in College Station
Features: FDA User Fees Face Pushback
The Obama administration is asking for an additional $253 million in the FDA’s 2013 budget for the Transforming Food Safety Initiative, which is designed to help the agency implement the Food Safety Modernization Act.
A new standard from the Geneva-based International Organization for Standardization (ISO) sets out up-to-date requirements for food irradiation using ionizing radiation to control pathogens, reduce spoilage, and extend shelf life.
Departments: Training Oversights and Their Impact on GFSI
The Global Food Safety Initiative tightened food safety standards with the North American introduction of its approved benchmarking schemes in 2007. Yet one of the most important elements of these schemes, the need for training and knowledge retention, often falls short, as a number of third-party audits can attest.