Food safety

US: New findings and status of the romaine E. coli O157:H7 outbreak investigation

Today, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is providing an update on our investigation of an outbreak of E. coli O157:H7 illnesses linked to romaine lettuce. The FDA takes…

Pesticide Data Program – Summary for 2018

USDA: Over 99 percent of samples well below EPA residue tolerances in 2018

The USDA Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) initiated the Pesticide Data Program (PDP) in 1991 to collect data on pesticide residues in food, and the program now has an important role in the implementation of the 1996 Food Quality Protection Act (FQPA). The law directs the Secretary of Agriculture to…

Necessity of avoiding ‘CIPC legacy’ residue breaches in potato storages

Potato growers using sprout suppressant chlorpropham (CIPC) will need to thoroughly clean stores after the 2019 crop is unloaded next summer. This has to be done to lower the risk of residue exceedances after the active is withdrawn. Plant growth regulator CIPC is the potato industry’s go-to method of controlling…

FDA update

Second retailer named in update on US hepatitis A outbreak

Two more patients have been confirmed and a second retailer has been named in relation to an outbreak of hepatitis A, that has been associated with fresh blackberries. The…

Visionary group of Central Otago growers took a chance

New Zealand RSE scheme transformed the fruit growing industry

In the early 2000s the orchards and vineyards of central Otago were heavy with fruit. Peaches, cherries and grapes were ready to be plucked, boxed and shipped all over the world. But there was a problem. There weren’t enough people to pick them.  Hiring backpackers and students on holiday was the usual practice,…

New international E. coli outbreak hits 3 US states and 5 Canada provinces

State and federal officials are investigating a new multistate outbreak of  E. coli O157:H7 infections. The outbreak is associated with Fresh Express brand chopped salad kits. Some people in Canada are also sick. “Do not eat or sell Fresh Express Sunflower Crisp Chopped Salad Kits with this identifying information:…

Tailor Cut Produce recalls cut fruit mix because of possible health risk

Tailor Cut Produce of New Jersey, is recalling its Fruit luau, cut honeydew, cut cantaloupe and cut pineapple products because they have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella, an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and…

US victims at least at 102

Salinas Romaine E. coli strikes two people in Canada

Since November 22, 2019, the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) has identified one additional E. coli illness in Canada with a similar genetic fingerprint to illnesses…

Sweden: Unpasteurized spinach drink tied to increasing cryptosporidium cases

Officials in Sweden are investigating a recent increase in the number of cryptosporidiosis cases. Public Health Agency Folkhälsomyndigheten has linked some illnesses to one…

Wisconsin hardest hit up until now

Romaine outbreak US patient list tops 100; warnings continue

More than 100 people have now been confirmed with infections in an E. coli outbreak associated with romaine lettuce. Public health officials continue their warning against romaine lettuce grown in the Salinas, CA, area or any romaine from an unknown source. As of today, there are 102 patients spread…

Ewoud Buter, general manager of SmartWash Solutions BV:

“We deactivate Gram negative bacteria such as E.coli”

The recent E.coli outbreak in the romaine lettuce in the United States shows that there is still room for improvement in the way produce is washed and processed prior to landing on the shelves of stores and on the plates of consumers. A 2006 outbreak of E.coli in spinach led Taylor Farms to begin…

USDA - Special Article “Seasonality in Romaine Outbreaks and Regional Shipments”

E.coli outbreaks in romaine lettuce peak in April and October, 1998 to 2018

Leafy greens -including romaine lettuce- are the sixth most commonly consumed type of vegetable in the United States. About three-quarters of US romaine shipments come from two regions, California’s Central Coast and Yuma, Arizona; the rest come from other areas in the United States, Mexico, and Canada.…

Hungarian authorities did not improve controls after Listeria outbreak

Authorities in Hungary have not acted to strengthen the system of official controls for food businesses despite a deadly multi-country Listeria outbreak, according to DG Sante…

Fresh Thyme Farmers Market produce

Casualty count grows in hepatitis A outbreak linked to blackberries

Two more people are confirmed infected and a sixth US state is involved in a hepatitis A outbreak associated with fresh blackberries that were sold in September. More than…

Syosset, New York State

Lin’s Waha Int’l Corp. recalls waxberries due to sulfites and cyclamates

Syosset-based company Lin’s Waha Int’l Corp. is recalling it’s 8.11-ounce (230G) packages of Suantianyangmei Waxberry and Bingtangyangmei Waxberry. The soft fruit is being…

One in four fresh Costa Rican vegetables contaminated with pesticides

The Costa Rican State Phytosanitary System has published the 'Report 2018 on Analysis of Pesticide Residues in Fresh Vegetables in Costa Rica of National Production and Import…

Dole Fresh Vegetables announces precautionary limited recall of colorful coleslaw

Dole Fresh Vegetables, Inc. is voluntarily recalling a limited number of cases of Colorful Coleslaw. This precautionary recall notification is being issued due to a sample of President’s Choice Colorful Coleslaw which yielded a positive result for Salmonella in a random sample test conducted by the…

India: FSSAI seizes artificially ripened bananas

On Sunday, the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) seized one ton of artificially ripened bananas and plantains from a market in Tiruppur. According to…

Cornell food scientist Elizabeth Bihn

Study on ‘local’ farms offers food safety snapshot

A noted food-safety expert says she’s pleased with how much information about local farms and food safety is contained in a recently released needs assessment survey report, but she also admitted to being surprised at one of the unexpected results that surfaced in the report. According to the report,…

Contamination caused by broken light fitting

New Zealand: Strawberries recalled as glass is found in punnet

In Porirua, a Pak'nSave supermarket has pulled punnets of strawberries from sale after one of them was found to contain glass. People who bought Zakberry-brand strawberries from Pak'nSave Porirua on December 2 have been asked to check them and return the product for a refund as it could contain plastic…

Canadian Food Inspection Agency issues new requirements for romaine lettuce

On November 22, 2019, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency issued a notice for new requirements for all romaine lettuce products from the Salinas growing region of California…

Bans on food imports from Fukushima relaxed

Nations ease up on import restrictions Japanese food

Countries around the world are relaxing or altogether scrapping their restrictions on Japanese food imports put in place after the 2011 accident at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant. On Nov. 4, Singapore announced it would no longer ban food imports from Fukushima Prefecture, and the European Union…

NY health department decrees:

Salad vending machines to be treated as restaurants

The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene has determined that vending machines that dispense fresh salads should be treated as miniature restaurants. This has led to the shutting down of 55 vending machines in New York operated by Farmer’s Fridge, a Chicago-based food startup. These…

After participating at Cibus Tec, the Laboratory is now preparing for FuturPera

Sicural, concentrating on Listeria

Exhibitions come and go, for the Sicural Laboratory. After participating, in October, at Cibus Tec in Parma, from 28 to 30 November it will be at FuturPera, the exhibition that takes place in Ferrara. "In Ferrara we will be in hall 3, stand 34 - explains Silvia Zuccherelli - ready to illustrate our…

UPDATE: Prices likely to go up on romaine and leafy greens post-CDC advisory

Following the recall and advisory warning that was issued late last week over romaine lettuce grown in the Salinas, Ca. region, at least one food distributor is hoping for some long-term change while dealing with the short-term effects of the warning. The advisory, issued Nov. 22 by the Centers for…

Hong Kong government suspends import and sale of romaine lettuce from Salinas

Following The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) and the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) announcement about the possible contamination of romaine lettuce from…

E. coli outbreak in Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada, has ended

In October there were reports of an E. Coli outbreak in Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. Health officials now say that the outbreak has ended. Test results from the National…

Total number of people infected by E. Coli from Salinas California romaine lettuce rises to 67

As of November 25th, a total of 67 people are confirmed to have been infected with the outbreak strain of E. coli O157:H7, found in romaine lettuce. This number is up by 27 people since a previous update from November 22nd. The infected people are spread across at least 19 states. The continued advise from…

Will Fukushima's produce be served at Tokyo Olympics?

For years, the Japanese government has sought to convince consumers that food from Fukushima is safe despite the nuclear disaster. But the question remains whether food from this prefecture will be served at the Tokyo Olympics. It’s a thorny subject for the authorities. They pitched the Olympics in part…

Turkey provides farmers with "spinach" training

Following the recent poisoning cases from spinach, Turkish Minister of Agriculture and Forestry Bekir Pakdemirli announced that farmers will be provided with training on spinach and said: "We need to further explain them how to prepare bunches and what to send to the market and what not to send to the…

Inspectorate issues warning on contaminated romaine lettuce

FDA recalls romaine lettuce after new outbreak sickens 40

The Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labour VSA is alerting the public to romaine lettuce originating from the United States due to potential contamination…

Nearly 100,000 pounds of salad products recalled because of E. coli

The Missa Bay company, working out of Swedesboro, New Jersey, is recalling approximately 97,272 pounds of salad products because the lettuce ingredient may be contaminated…

Hepatitis A outbreak related to blackberries sold by Fresh Thyme

A multi-state outbreak of Hepatitis A has been linked to eating blackberries purchased at Fresh Thyme grocery stores in three states: Indiana, Nebraska and Wisconsin. These…

Ready Pac still says: no recall for salads linked this outbreak

US officials name romaine in Maryland E. coli outbreak

At least 20 people in Wisconsin have E. coli infections, linked to an outbreak in Maryland that has been traced to ready-to-eat romaine lettuce salads. Some officials,…

Standards need to be met

Kenyan farmers still struggling with produce for export

Thousands of smallholder farmers in Kenya cannot export their produce and sometimes it cannot be sold locally because of contamination, diseases and pests. According to…

EU finds issues with Serbian fruit control

According to a recently released audit report, most soft fruits exported from Serbia to Europe are not subject to official controls at primary production levels. DG Sante, the European Commission’s unit for policy on food safety and health, found official controls to address potential microbiological…

Dr Sanjay D. Sawant:

‘Grapes in local markets contain high levels of pesticides’

Grapes commonly available in local Indian markets have heavy amounts of pesticides, fungicides and insecticides, even surpassing international safety standards. This means…

EU steps up monitoring of Kenya’s horticulture imports

East African fresh produce exporters are being locked out of the lucrative EU market by the strict regulations on the use of chemicals. The EU, which is the leading importer…

Through to November 2020

FDA will test romaine lettuce for pathogens

After four outbreaks in less than two years where likely contaminated romaine lettuce contained deadly E. coli O157: H7, the Food and Drug Administration has decided to turn to microbial testing for clues for the next year to try to figure out what’s happening. Earlier this year, the agency announced…

APHIS analyses risks associated with importing carrots from Republic of Korea

The US Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has prepared and is accepting comments on a pest risk analysis (PRA) regarding the…

Study shows IFCO's sanitation process is effective against ToBRFV

The latest food safety testing conducted on IFCO Reusable Plastic Containers (RPCs) has confirmed damaging pathogens – viruses and bacteria -- are removed or deactivated by…

Helping to catalyse the entire fruit value chain

Coca Cola to complete $1.7 bn investment in India’s ‘Fruit Circular Economy’

Global FMCG major Coca-Cola is on track to complete all its investment commitments in India, including the $1.7 billion funding to create a “Fruit Circular Economy” meant to…

Church Brothers Farms announces new VP of food safety and quality

Church Brothers Farms hired Grace Ho as the company’s new vice president of food safety and quality (FSQ). “This role is critically important and we wanted to hire the right…

Russ Davis Wholesale issues recall due to possible listeria contamination

Russ Davis Wholesale (RDW), a fresh produce processor and distributor, in an abundance of caution is voluntarily recalling multiple products due to possible contamination of…

U.S. grower increases criteria for yearly internal food safety audits this season

As the majority of the Mexican hot house vegetable seasons get underway, produce distributor and grower, Divine Flavor, has started to include more criteria into their yearly internal food safety audits to help growers comply with areas related to the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). Working closely…

Whole Foods recalls Mann Packing products due to possible Listeria contamination

In response to Mann Packing Co., Inc’s recall of vegetable products, Whole Foods Market is voluntarily recalling multiple products from its stores in the United States. Mann…

Quality often questionable as well

Leafy greens in Pune markets jump from affordable to pricey

Leafy green vegetables, although poor in supply and quality, are setting new price highs in the markets across the city of Pune. The rain, affecting veggie supplies to…

2018 outbreak analysed

First Australian Salmonella Havana outbreak has been traced to alfalfa sprouts

According to researchers, the Salmonella outbreak linked to alfalfa sprouts last year was, in fact, the first identified Salmonella Havana occurrence in Australia. During June 2018, an increase in Salmonella Havana was detected through routine surveillance by the Communicable Disease Control Branch…

Istanbul, Edirne, Tekirdağ and Kocaeli provinces

Health Minister Koca urges calm over spinach poisoning

Turkish Health Minister Fahrettin Koca urged citizens not to panic amid an increasing number of food poisoning cases due to spinach consumption. The number of patients poisoned from spinach mixed with toxic herbs has risen to 196, Minister Fahrettin Koca said on Tuesday, adding that there was no need for…

More voluntary recalls issued due to possible Listeria contamination

Two companies, GHNW LLC and Wegmans Food Markets, have issues voluntary recalls due to possible contamination with Listeria monocytogenes, in connection with the recent recall…

Canada: Freshcut vegetable recall as reponse to possible Listeria contamination

A nationwide recall of freshcut vegetables continues to expand with dozens of products and multiple brands now on the list. Products potentially contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes are coleslaw, riced cauliflower, green beans, noodles, kale salads and more. Some of the products do not expire for 10…

Toxic weeds found among spinach samples

Spinach hospitalises dozens in Turkey

At least 66 people have been hospitalized across Turkey over the past four days for food poisoning that is suspected to have originated from spinach mixed with a toxic weed. The case is serious enough to have prompted officials to launch an investigation and gather samples. Istanbul's health authority on…

Due to E. coli fears

Guyana temporarily bans import of romaine lettuce

This Monday, Guyana officials announced a temporary restriction on the importation of romaine lettuce. It said the move comes on the heels of an outbreak of the E. coli…

Wawona Frozen Food voluntarily recalls frozen raspberries due to possible health risk

Wawona Frozen Foods is voluntarily recalling packages of frozen raspberries and frozen berry mixes containing raspberries sold at Aldi Grocery Stores and frozen raspberries sold at Raley's Family of Fine Stores because they have the potential to be contaminated with Hepatitis A. The frozen raspberries…

Possible Listeria contamination in sweet kale bagged salad blend

Sobeys Inc. is recalling some of its Compliments brand sweet kale bagged salad blend because of possible Listeria monocytogenes contamination. This recall was triggered by Canadian…

US: FDA hid romaine-related outbreak from public for more than 6 weeks

An outbreak of E. coli infections linked to romaine lettuce sickened people in a dozen states from July through early September, but US officials did not release any…

Again jeopardising exports

EU again hits Kenyan produce with ‘high chemical use’ label

The European Union has returned Kenya to list of countries that use high levels of crop protection agents on their horticultural produce. This, again, poses a threat to exports, the country's major source of foreign exchange. The negative labelling comes just five months after Kenya was delisted in…

Due to elevated pesticide levels

Bosnia Herzegovina denies entry to 21 tons of Turkish tangerines

Last Monday, the phytosanitary inspection office of Republika Srpska (RS), one of the entities in Bosnia and Herzegovina, has forbidden the import of 21 tons of tangerines…

Kenya to host three day event on Food Safety

Next week, Kenya will hold a Global Gap Tour Stop conference that has attracted over 500 industry players in production and export  mainly dealing with fruits, vegetables, herbs,…

Food Safety Modernization Act

US produce growers struggle with food safety requirements

A Cornell study has identified the biggest barriers to complying with FMSA requirements to be Time, money and infrastructure. Although local food producers are broadly…

North Bay Produce Inc. apple recall

On October 25th, 2019 North Bay Produce Inc. voluntary issued a recall of certain varieties of fresh apples packed in one packinghouse between October 16th-October 21st. The recall is due to the potential to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes. It was initiated as a result of a product test which…

Renaissance Food Group to sponsor United Fresh Safety Immersion Program

Renaissance Food Group will sponsor the new United Fresh Produce Safety Immersion Program, which the organization says is developed to build the technical capacity, critical…

Guadeloupe and Martinique

"Pesticide poisoned French paradise islands in Caribbean"

The French Caribbean islands of Guadeloupe and Martinique have the image of idyllic, sunny tourist destinations. Few visitors are aware that these lush, tropical islands have a chronic pollution problem. A pesticide linked to cancer - chlordecone - was sprayed on banana crops on the islands for two…

New Council for Agricultural Science and Technology report:

There is no sound science behind avoiding produce ‘because of pesticides’

A new report from the Council for Agricultural Science and Technology (CAST) aims to reduce consumers’ worries by describing how information from complex risk assessments can be misinterpreted in news stories and by consumer advocacy groups. The often complex findings from these scientific publications…

US approves imports of fresh Taiwan guavas

With relations between the US and Taiwan continuing to improve again, the US Department of Agriculture on Thursday announced that it has authorized the import of guavas grown…

Brother’s Produce – Paterson, NJ

Worker at US fresh produce company positive for hepatitis A: alert issued

A food handler has tested positive for hepatitis A, spurring a public alert for anyone who bought fresh fruits or vegetables from a specific Brother’s Produce location in…

Until now 71 people infected

Tomatoes linked to Salmonella outbreak in Sweden

Tomatoes are the probable source of a Salmonella outbreak in Sweden, according to public health officials. Folkhälsomyndigheten (Public Health Agency of Sweden) identified 71…

‘Buenas Brand frozen grated coconut’

Coconut product from Philippines recalled for Salmonella

Hayward, a California-based Global Commodities Corporation, has recalled one lot of Buenas Brand frozen grated coconut, a product of The Philippines. The California Department…

Aimed at reducing Listeria formation

UMAS Project looks at surface changes & coatings to reduce biofilms

A University of Massachusetts research group has teamed up with the USDA to look at whether combining physical changes to food contact surfaces with Food and Drug…

Onion grower joins PMA Gold Circle Campaign

Onions 52 said it is aiming to reinforce its commitment to food safety through the Produce Marketing Association (PMA) Gold Circle Campaign for Food Safety. By participating in the PMA Gold Circle Campaign for Food Safety, Onions 52 joins more than 350 fresh produce suppliers and buyers—from growers and…

Italy rejects imports of Uruguayan oranges with banned pesticide residues

As reported by the Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF), Italy has rejected the import of oranges from Uruguay because they contained traces of a pesticide that is…

Potential contamination with Norovirus

Cornerstone Premium Foods recalls frozen blackberries

Cornerstone Premium Foods of Syracuse, New York is recalling a specific lot of product containing frozen blackberries (noted below) due to the potential of being contaminated with Norovirus. FDA testing of frozen blackberries was reported to have tested positive for Norovirus. Norovirus is a highly contagious…

Taiwan: Excessive pesticide residue on fruit and veg in Taipei

According to the Taipei Department of Health, an intensive inspection of fresh fruit and vegetables sold in Taipei found -last month- that 21.6 percent of the tested items had pesticide residue exceeding the maximum residue limits (MRLs). A total of 88 samples were collected in August, and test found…

New mobile app aims to make industry-wide food traceability a reality

iTradeNetwork, provider of supply chain management and intelligence solutions for the food and beverage industry, announced a pilot program with grower/shippers of select…

Outbreak traced to basil from Mexico

CDC: 241 confirmed victims in Cyclospora outbreak

Last Monday, the CDC waited declared an end to a cyclosporiasis outbreak that was traced to basil from Mexico. The tally of laboratory-confirmed patients stands at 241, with…


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