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January 8, 2014
Pesticide-Tainted Food Sickens More Than 350 in Japan

RadioAustralia reported today that more than 350 people across Japan have fallen ill after eating potentially pesticide-contaminated frozen food produced by a major Japanese frozen food company. A similar report from Bloomberg News put the number of those affected at 890, quoting Japan's public broadcasting outlet, NHK.

January 8, 2014
FSIS Issues Compliance Guidelines for Controlling Salmonella in Market Hogs

On Jan. 6, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) posted a guidance document, Compliance Guidelines for Controlling Salmonella in Market Hogs, for review, comment, and implementation by the industry. The guidance provides information on best practices that may be applied at a hog slaughter facility to prevent, eliminate, or reduce levels of Salmonella on hogs at all stages of slaughter and dressing. 

December 4, 2013
FSIS Releases Comprehensive Strategy to Reduce Salmonella

The Salmonella Action Plan presents a number of aggressive steps the agency will take to prevent Salmonella-related illnesses.

December 30, 2013
FDA Extends Comment Period on Proposal to Restrict Trans Fat in Processed Foods

As reported on Dec. 17, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is extending the comment period on its preliminary determination that partially hydrogenated oils, the primary dietary source of artificial trans fat in processed foods, are not “generally recognized as safe” for use in food. The agency announced today that the Federal Register notice extending the comment period is on display (see docket FDA-2013-N-1317) and will publish on Dec. 31.

January 7, 2014
New Guide Helps Fresh Produce Operations Monitor, Control Listeria

The United Fresh Produce Association's Food Safety & Technology Council has developed a document, Guidance on Environmental Monitoring and Control of Listeria for the Fresh Produce Industry, that aims to guide the fresh produce industry in developing practical and scientifically sound “search and destroy” programs for Listeria.

January 3, 2014
Multistate Salmonellosis Outbreak Linked to Raw Cashew Cheese

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) today announced it is investigating a multistate outbreak of Salmonella Stanley infections linked to raw cashew cheese produced by The Cultured Kitchen of West Sacramento, CA. To date, these infections have been reported in 14 people from three states; three of those people have been hospitalized.

January 2, 2014
Neogen Corp. Acquires Insecticide Manufacturer Chem-Tech Ltd.

Neogen Corporation, a Lansing, MI-based developer and marketer of products for food and animal safety, announced today that it has acquired the stock of Chem-Tech Ltd., a Des Moines, IA-based manufacturer of insecticides for the animal and food industries.

January 2, 2014
Wal-Mart China Recalls Donkey Meat Adulterated with Fox

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has recalled donkey meat sold at some outlets in China's eastern Shandong province after tests showed the product contained the DNA of other animals, the U.S. company said. The Shandong Food and Drug Administration explained that the donkey product contained fox meat.

December 26, 2013
National Advisory Committee on Meat and Poultry Inspection to Host Public Meeting


The National Advisory Committee on Meat and Poultry Inspection (NACMPI) today announced that it will host a public meeting Jan. 7-8, 2014 to review and discuss safe handling instructions included on food labels. At that meeting, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) will also seek feedback on its Establishment-Specific Data Release Strategic Plan.

December 26, 2013
FDA Updates Food Defense Mitigation Strategies Database

In conjunction with its recently proposed rule, "Focused Mitigation Strategies to Protect Food Against Intentional Adulteration," the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Dec. 24 released an updated version of the Food Defense Mitigation Strategies Database (MSD). The Database provides a range of preventive measures that food companies may choose to implement to better protect their facility, personnel, products, and operations from intentional contamination.

December 23, 2013
Global Food Safety Initiative Recognizes IFS PACsecure

The Board of Directors of the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) on Dec. 20 announced that the IFS PACsecure Standard Version 1 has been successfully benchmarked by GFSI and has achieved recognition against the GFSI Guidance Document Sixth Edition. The IFS PACsecure Standard has been recognized against the M Production of Food Packaging scope.

December 20, 2013
FDA Will Tweak Food Safety Rules to Be More Farmer-Friendly

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration says it will revise sweeping new food safety rules proposed earlier this year after farmers complained the rules could hurt business

December 20, 2013
FDA Proposes New Food Defense Rule to Tackle Intentional Adulteration

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) today proposed a rule that would require the largest food businesses in the U.S. and abroad to take steps to prevent facilities from being the target of intentional attempts to contaminate the food supply. The FDA will hold a public meeting on the proposed rule on Feb. 20, 2014, in College Park, MD.

December 19, 2013
CDC: Drug-resistant Salmonella Outbreak from Foster Farms Chicken Affected 416

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention today posted an Investigation Update on the multistate outbreak of multidrug-resistant Salmonella Heidelberg infections linked to Foster Farms brand chicken that was initially reported in early October. To date, 416 individuals have been affected, from 23 states and Puerto Rico.

December 18, 2013
FSIS Issues Directives on Recalls, Horse Inspection, Ingredients Used in Meat/Poultry

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) today announced that new Directives are available on Verifying Compliance with Requirements for Written Recall Procedures; Ante-Mortem, Postmortem Inspection of Equines and Documentation of Inspection Tasks; and Safe and Suitable Ingredients Used In the Production of Meat, Poultry, and Egg Products.

December 18, 2013
European Commission Issues Draft Bans on Animal Cloning, Clone-derived Food

The European Commission on Dec. 18 adopted three draft laws on animal cloning and on novel food "to provide legal certainty in this field." The proposals seek to prohibit the use of the cloning technique in the European Union (EU) for farm animals, importing of animal clones, and marketing of food from animal clones.

December 18, 2013
FDA / CDC / FSIS Webinar to Discuss Progress on Attribution of Foodborne Illness

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) today announced that on Friday, Jan. 10, from 2 to 3 p.m. (EST), they will present a webinar on progress toward attributing foodborne illnesses to food sources. The webinar is open to the public at no charge.

December 18, 2013
EFSA Evaluates Molecular Typing Methods for Foodborne Pathogens

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) today published a scientific opinion paper, written by the agency's Panel on Biological Hazards (BIOHAZ), which reviews various molecular typing methods for the four major foodborne pathogens (Salmonella, Escherichia coli, Listeria and Campylobacter) and evaluates the effectiveness of those methods.

December 18, 2013
Charm Sciences' Aflatoxin Quantitative Test for Feed, Grain Earns GIPSA Approval

Charm Sciences announced Dec. 16 that its ROSA (Rapid One Step Assay) WET (Water Extraction Technology) XR Aflatoxin Quantitative test has received approval from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Grain Inspection, Packers & Stockyards Administration (GIPSA) for the detection, in a single five-minute assay, of 0–100 ppb aflatoxin in feed and grain.

December 18, 2013
FDA Extends Comment Period for Draft Risk Profile on Pathogens in Spices

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Dec.17 extended the period for submission of comments, scientific data and other information related to its draft document titled, “Draft Risk Profile on Pathogens and Filth in Spices.” The new deadline is March 3, 2014.

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