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Columns: Send a Strong Message
Last week a colleague forwarded an eNewsletter to me that jogged my memory. I just can’t believe it’s true. During a Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions food safety hearing on October 22, Freshman Senator Al Franken asked Margaret Hamburg, MD, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) commissioner, about the status of the criminal prosecution of Peanut Corporation of America (PCA).
After an extended holiday from my column, I would like to get back to basics and examine how to educate sanitation crews. If a sanitation crew knows both why they are doing the job and the importance of doing it correctly, they can take pride in the accomplishment of a job well done. I will use my sanitation handbook as a reference guide.
Columns: Mmmm … Bacon
The end of the year is always an opportunity to make lists of things like the top news stories of the year, the top scientific breakthroughs, and other great advances. But when a decade is ending, the lists come even more fast and furious.
Columns: QA/QC Finally Gets Some Respect
Nearly two decades ago, Food Quality was launched as the first publication to exclusively target the food quality and safety market. The world—and the food industry—were a lot different back then.
My last article focused on sanitation training and the five basic steps for cleaning a food plant. In this article I address the pitfalls, as well as the results, you can expect when you implement a high-quality food safety/sanitation system.
When we think sanitation, we think cleanliness, and when we think cleanliness, we think about an effective food safety program and the peace of mind that results from it. That’s why food safety and cleanliness go hand in hand. A clean area means an area with clean surfaces, clean air, and clean surrounding environments. One of the definitions of “clean” is “free from dirt, filth, or impurities.” And to make clean is to remove dirt, filth, or unwanted substances.
Columns: Fighting Food Fraud
Prostitution has been dubbed the world’s oldest profession, but being an adulterator of food is a close second. Historical accounts make it clear that people have been altering foods for financial gain since the emergence of trade and bartering.
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;...
Columns: Pump Up Your Prerequisite Programs
This column is the first of two parts. Part two, which will run in our June/July issue, will discuss understanding and applying effective tools to ensure that your prerequisite programs are well defined and effective.