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thumbnail image: thumbnail for: Planning to Reduce Rat-Infested Food Warehouses

News: Planning to Reduce Rat-Infested Food Warehouses

New York Senator Charles Schumer has issued a call for the FDA to increase inspections at food warehouses throughout the country, citing some 90 warnings issued by the agency in 2014 to food facilities about insanitary conditions that included, in multiple cases, dead rodents and rodent feces.

thumbnail image: thumbnail for: Environmental Impacts of Produce Safety Rule Open for Comment

News: Environmental Impacts of Produce Safety Rule Open for Comment

The draft EIS focuses on four key areas in the produce safety rule: definition of covered farms, water quality standards, biological soil amendments of animal origin, and actions taken with respect to domesticated and wild animals on farm lands. Only the water quality standards have been identified as potentially having a significant adverse environmental impact.

thumbnail image: thumbnail for: Pathogens Identified in Herbs at Farmers’ Markets

News: Pathogens Identified in Herbs at Farmers’ Markets

Fresh and locally grown produce available at farmers’ markets comes with some health risks, according to a study that found Salmonella and E. coli in samples of basil, cilantro, and parsley purchased at 13 such markets. The finding is a reminder that federal food safety regulations that govern large-scale farm practices don't apply to produce sold by smaller farms that sell their harvest at local farmers’ markets.

thumbnail image: thumbnail for: Feedlot Buffer Zones May Not Protect Produce from Contamination

News: Feedlot Buffer Zones May Not Protect Produce from Contamination

Current buffer zone guidelines, which recommend that produce be planted at least 400 feet away from livestock feedlots in order to prevent contamination with airborne pathogens, may not be sufficient to protect produce from E. coli O157:H7, according to new research from USDA scientists at the Agricultural Research Service, U.S. Meat Animal Research Center.

thumbnail image: thumbnail for: Illegal Fishing Threatens Quality and Safety of Seafood in U.S.

News: Illegal Fishing Threatens Quality and Safety of Seafood in U.S.

Illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing not only threatens the sustainability of the seafood industry but also the safety and quality of seafood available to consumers. Recommendations issued in December by the Presidential Task Force on Combating Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated Fishing and Seafood Fraud will, if implemented, take action on illegal fishing and make it a diplomatic priority.

thumbnail image: thumbnail for: Mechanically Tenderized Meat Labeling Requirements Delayed

News: Mechanically Tenderized Meat Labeling Requirements Delayed

The USDA failed to meet the Dec. 31, 2014 deadline for finalizing and submitting its rule for proposed labeling of mechanically tenderized meat to White House Office of Management and Budget. What could have been implemented by 2016 will now have to wait at least until 2018.

thumbnail image: thumbnail for: SPECIAL FEATURE: In a Packaging Pickle?

Features: SPECIAL FEATURE: In a Packaging Pickle?

When it comes to pickle packaging, consumers are very familiar with seeing a glass jar with a metal closure on store shelves. The reason that companies select this package format goes beyond industry standards, however. The partnership between metal and glass is an ideal vehicle to use in order to maintain the integrity of the product.

thumbnail image: thumbnail for: Street Food, Safe Food?

News: Street Food, Safe Food?

With more food trucks popping up all around the nation, the question of whether or not their food is safe to eat has become more important. A study researched over 260,000 food and safety inspection reports in seven cities and found that in all cities, food trucks and carts did just as well as, or better than, restaurants.

thumbnail image: thumbnail for: SPECIAL FEATURE: 14 Ways to Keep Your Ice Safe

Features: SPECIAL FEATURE: 14 Ways to Keep Your Ice Safe

Ever since JAMA ran an article on the food safety of crushed ice more than 60 years ago, the focus on the safety of commercial, crushed ice has been closely scrutinized. Ice should always be considered food.

thumbnail image: thumbnail for: Industry Experts Respond to the Revised FSMA Rules

News: Industry Experts Respond to the Revised FSMA Rules

Revised provisions to four proposed rules in the FDA’s FSMA surprised few industry experts, but they say the changes clarify the original rules, first proposed in 2013, and could give them more teeth. The four revised rules cover preventative controls of human food, produce safety, preventive controls for animal food, and foreign supplier verification programs.

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December/January 2015

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