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February 5, 2014
FDA Reopening Comment Period for Foods Portion of Guidance on Human Research Studies

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced today that it is reopening, for 60 days, the comment period for specific portions of its final guidance entitled “Investigational New Drug Applications (INDs) -- Determining Whether Human Research Studies Can Be Conducted Without an IND,” which was announced in the Sept. 10, 2013 Federal Register. The comment period is reopening only for subsections of the final guidance that address the applicability of the IND regulations to clinical research studies involving cosmetics and foods (including dietary supplements).

February 5, 2014
AMI Foundation Issues Updated Sanitary Equipment Design Principles

The American Meat Institute Foundation (AMIF) on Feb. 3 released an updated version of its Sanitary Equipment Design Principles: Checklist & Glossary. The Principles have been a leading factor in food safety advances in meat and poultry plants including the reduction of Listeria monocytogenes in ready-to-eat meat and poultry products.

February 4, 2014
Senate Passes Farm Bill 68-32; Now on to the President's Desk

On a 68-32 vote, the U.S. Senate today cleared the conference report reauthorizing agriculture and nutrition programs for five years.

February 4, 2014
FSA: Out-of-Home Food Hygiene Is UK Consumers' Top Food Safety Concern

The top three food safety issues of concern for UK citizens are food hygiene when eating out (36%), the use of additives in food (26%), and food poisoning from bacteria such as Salmonella and E. coli (26%), according to the Food Standards Agency (FSA). Those are among the findings of the FSA's latest Biannual Public Attitudes Tracker survey, conducted in November 2013 and published this week..

February 4, 2014
Thermo Develops Method to Determine Carbendazim Levels in Orange Juice

Thermo Fisher Scientific has developed a reproducible and accurate high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) method combined with on-line solid-phase extraction for the sensitive determination of carbendazim in orange juice. Application Note 1067: Determination of Carbendazim in Orange Juice demonstrates that this application — performed using a rapid separation liquid chromatography system — simplifies sample preparation and improves HPLC detection sensitivity with a method detection limit of carbendazim in orange juice of 0.2 μg/L.

February 4, 2014
FSA Updates List of Products Free from Colors Linked to Hyperactivity

The UK's Food Standards Agency (FSA) has updated its list of product ranges that do not contain the six food colors associated with possible hyperactivity in young children.

February 4, 2014
Roka Receives AOAC-RI Certification for Atlas E. coli O157:H7 EG2 Detection Assay

Roka Bioscience announced today that its Atlas E. coli O157:H7 EG2 Detection Assay has received AOAC Performance Tested Methods certification from the AOAC Research Institute. The independent laboratory study was conducted by Q Laboratories, Inc., as part of the AOAC-RI independent third-party validation process.

February 4, 2014
Case Tally Now 11 in Scottish E. coli Outbreak Linked to Arena Food

The number of people affected by an outbreak of E.coli linked to burgers eaten at a Scottish concert venue has increased to 11. Investigators have linked the cases to the SSE Hydro in Glasgow, a major entertainment venue that opened last September.

February 4, 2014
FSIS Updates New Technology Table, Validated Pathogen Test Kit List

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) today issued an updated listing of Foodborne Pathogen Test Kits Validated by Independent Organizations. This complements FSIS's update of its New Technology Table; both documents are available on the FSIS website.

February 4, 2014
Public Meeting to Address Agenda Items for Codex Committee on Fresh Produce

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) and the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) are sponsoring a public meeting to provide information and receive public comments on agenda items, and draft U.S. positions to be discussed at the 18th Session of the Codex Committee on Fresh Fruits and Vegetables (CCFFV).

February 3, 2014
FDA Posts Draft Methodological Approach to Identifying High-Risk Foods under FSMA

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced today that it is publishing a Federal Register notice to present its draft methodological approach to identifying high-risk foods, as required under section 204(d)(2) of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). The agency is seeking comments on the draft, as well as relevant scientific data, to help refine its approach.

February 3, 2014
Senate to Vote on Farm Bill Early This Week

The Senate is set to begin discussion on the 2014 farm bill on Monday afternoon, according to the official Senate schedule.

January 31, 2014
Norovirus Outbreak Sickens 189, Docks Second Cruise Ship This Week

In the second such instance this week, a cruise ship returned to its home port early after a significant number of passengers came down with a gastrointestinal illness. Princess Cruises' Caribbean Princess arrived back in Houston late Thursday, after more than 160 of the ship's 3,104 passengers experienced symptoms consistent with a norovirus infection, according to USA Today.

January 31, 2014
FDA Issues Proposed Rule on Sanitary Transportation of Human and Animal Food

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) today proposed a rule that would require certain shippers, receivers, and carriers who transport food by motor or rail vehicles to take steps to prevent the contamination of human and animal food during transportation. Part of the implementation of the Sanitary Food Transportation Act of 2005, the proposal marks the seventh and final major rule in the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act’s (FSMA) central framework aimed at systematically building preventive measures across the food system.

January 31, 2014
EFSA Publishes 'Stop-the-Clock' Timelines for Regulated Product Applications

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) today released new guidance that sets out indicative timelines the Authority will use when requesting information it needs to complete its evaluation when it performs risk assessments of regulated products such as food contact materials, GMOs or feed additives.

January 31, 2014
Scientists Develop Antibiotic ‘Smart Bomb’ That Targets Specific Bacteria Strains

Researchers from North Carolina State University have developed a de facto antibiotic “smart bomb” that can identify specific strains of bacteria and sever their DNA, eliminating the infection. The technique offers a potential approach to treat infections by multi-drug resistant bacteria.

January 31, 2014
Processing Aid Shows Promise at Pummeling Persistent Pathogens

PURE Bioscience, Inc., creator of a patented silver dihydrogen citrate (SDC) antimicrobial, on Jan. 28 announced progress in its development of a SDC-based antimicrobial for direct food contact. The company is testing formulations to be used as a rinse or processing aid on produce, poultry, and meats.

January 30, 2014
Foodborne Clostridium perfringens Toxin Could Trigger MS, Study Says

Researchers at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York have discovered that a toxin made by the bacterium Clostridium perfringens — responsible for a million cases of food poisoning in the U.S. each year — appears to attack the cells associated with multiple sclerosis (MS) and could be a trigger for the disease.

January 30, 2014
FDA Adds Public Meetings for Proposed Rule on Intentional Adulteration of Food

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) today announced that it will hold two more public meetings regarding the Proposed Rule for Focused Mitigation Strategies to Protect Food Against Intentional Adulteration that is part of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). In addition to the previously announced meeting on Feb. 20 in College Park, MD, the FDA plans to hold public meetings on Feb. 27 in Chicago and on March 13 in Anaheim, CA.

January 29, 2014
FSA Says Tests Find No Horse Meat in UK Beef for Past Quarter

The UK's Food Standards Agency today released its latest quarterly report on its testing of beef products for horse meat or horse DNA. The report covers 6,069 test results, none of which found horse meat/DNA at or above the one percent (1%) reporting threshold.

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