A former professor of food safety and the publisher of barfblog.com, Powell is passionate about food, has five daughters, and is an OK goaltender in pickup hockey. Download Doug’s CV here. Download C.V. »
He had a patch out front and as a child I could often be found in the raspberry patch, picking a few and eating many.
So I’m disappointed (how Canadian) whenever cheap raspberries are the culprit in transmitting norovirus or hepatitis A.
I’m even more disappointed when taypayer-funded bureaucrats in government and public journalism fail to ask basic questions or provide basic information so consumers can make actual food choices, away from the hucksterism.
CBC News reports the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAPAQ) has issued a warning list of raspberry and raspberry products that may have been contaminated by norovirus.
Several cases of illness have already been reported to the ministry.
Those who have products on the list are asked to avoid consuming them and return them to the facility where they were purchased, or discard them.
Dr. Kellogg has been an easy target for two centuries, other shamen and woman date back to antiquity, when who knew why anyone had explosive diahhrea, other than the ether or the gods.
Anyone who likes Coldplay enough to marry the singer has serious problems, and should not be dispensing advice for anyone.
Andrea Mandell of USA Today reports Goop, Gwyneth Paltrow’s lifestyle website, tested its first summit in the gluten-free city of Los Angeles last Saturday. The price was steep: Roughly 600 attendees paid anywhere from $500 (for a “Lapis” pass) to $1,500 (for a “Clear Quartz” pass) to experience all things Goop for over nine hours. From crystal therapy to organic bone broth sampling, here’s how our experience went down at Paltrow’s first conference.
8:45 a.m. This is technically the time I’m allowed into “Goop hall,” where I’ve been promised a long list of vendors showcasing goods for me to try. But I’m still at home, trying to figure out if the dress code will be more athleisure or free-spirited sundress. The first session doesn’t start until 10 a.m., so what’s the harm in arriving a tad late?
9:30 a.m. Huge mistake. After being given my entry pass for the day – a bracelet of brown worry beads with a blue tassel, signifying my lowest-tier status (Lapis), I enter Goop hall and it is immediately epic. There’s a woman giving crystal therapy readings seated on cushions, the line for aura photography (a thing!) is 25 people deep, the flavored oxygen bar is packed and Dyson blowouts are in full swing.
9:35 a.m. Mildly panicked, I quickly get to breakfast, sampling in quick succession: Bulletproof Coffee Plus (coffee blended with something called Brain Octane Oil, grass-fed Butter and pasture-raised collagen protein), a tiny pink glazed donut from Erin McKenna’s Bakery and a sushi-inspired breakfast lox burrito from Kye’s.
9:40 a.m. I spot Gwyneth Paltrow walking in and hugging her staff as she takes in the peak Goopdom. (She wore a pink sundress, and I feel vindicated, but in truth anything went, as the dress code varied from athleisure to jeans.) The crowd here is mostly female, white, and between the ages of 30-50.
10 a.m. We assemble into the “chat room,” a forum style hall in which Blythe Danner’s pre-recorded voice welcomes us over the PA. Paltrow takes the blush-tone stage to greet us and explains how she became interested in this space in 1999, after her father was diagnosed with throat cancer. “I was trying to get him to eat healthier and I made him this batch of zucchini bread that was everything-free and I thought it was delicious,” she says. “And he bit into it and went, ‘Well, it’s like biting into The New York Times’.” As the audience chuckles, she says luckily gluten-free sugar-free food “has made a lot of progress since the ’90s.”
10:15 a.m.. Paltrow introduces us to the “the guy responsible for the term conscious uncoupling,” Dr. Habib Sadeghi, who will be instructing us on something called Cosmic Flow. But it’s a rough start: Sadeghi’s hour-long session proves to be a puzzling, extemporaneous jumble of his battle with testicular cancer, “the ontological experience called your life,” queries on why water is wet and how birds know how to fly (my 8-year-old could deliver this talk; get out there and earn your keep). He reads thank you notes from his patients and holds an existential discussion on how we chew our lunch. “I am one of the most authentic beings you will ever meet!” says Sadeghi, which immediately makes me question whether he is authentic. “Because I will never sell you short.” Somewhat deflated, I await the next session on gut health.
I’ve always told my daughters, when someone says “trust me,” run away.
11:35 a.m. Dr. Alejandro Junger (known for his Paltrow-approved master cleanses) takes the stage with Dr. Steven Gundry and Dr. Amy Myers. I know nothing about gut health, so I’m here for this: Teach me about my gut! But the first 10 minutes meander so much I get antsy and sneak out to try more of the samplings in Goop hall. There goes my gut.
11:45 a.m. Living the high life, I try Belcampo’s organic bone broth (unsalted, it’s hospital-like, but becomes more appetizing once you stir in offered mix-ins like apple cider vinegar and honey), before moving onto Moon Juice’s Blue Tonic with Brain Dust. There’s also a progressive display of pre-filled vape pens from hmbldt and an area called The Pharmacy, where you can buy Paltrow’s pre-packaged vitamins ($90).
12:05 p.m. Scooting back into gut health, it seems I’ve missed Gundry advising the audience to go hungry: “Don’t eat. I can’t stress that enough. We have the ability to store fat,” he instructed, according to my colleague at the Los Angeles Times.
12:15 p.m. Break! Though all of the activities available in the courtyard booked up for the day by 10 a.m. (an annoyance to many who paid hundreds if not thousands to be here) I luck out and get my aura photographed (a purple-y red, as it turns out, signifying I’m both a “visionary” and “passionate”). I sample “kale cookies ‘n cream” vegan ice cream. (Pass.) Two women I run into from Kansas City have told me they’re not super into the panels so far, and might try a nearby hike.
12:35 p.m. Onto a psychotherapy panel called The Tools! Paltrow moderates this one herself, and the session features her go-to doctors, Dr. Phil Stutz and Barry Michels. Initially, I’m worried they’re going to espouse more why-do-birds-fly generalities, but suddenly a red-headed woman volunteers to go up on stage for a session of LIVE THERAPY. (Paltrow gives up her seat and sits cross-legged on the floor.) It’s a remarkably raw, honest 30 minutes and closes with a talk about positive entitlement. “60 to 80 percent of the women in my practice don’t feel that basic sense of entitlement, that ‘I deserve this,’ ” says Michels. At their prompting, the room of women shout, “I’m an animal!” The hour ends with Paltrow opening up about her struggle with perfectionism. The doctors coin our fear The Shadow. “It’s whatever you wish you weren’t,” says Michels, no matter how much success you have.
1:15 pm Lunch is a yogi’s dream: Kale salads from Sweetgreen, poke bowls from Sweetfin, the matcha bar in full swing. Paltrow is off in an enclosed garden space having a catered meal with those who shelled out $1,500. This is not me, but I’m cool, I get to watch people willingly submit themselves to electrolyte IV drips in the courtyard.
3:45 p.m. The sex panel! Just when I thought I couldn’t take any more advice, renowned relationship expert Esther Perel (whose podcast I will now subscribe to), takes the stage with Girls showrunner Jenni Konner and “orgasmic genius” Nicole Daedone. Konner explains she and Lena Dunham depicted mostly bad sex on Girls because “we showed what sex is like in your twenties.” Perel disputes the common belief that women have lower libidos than men. “I don’t think women don’t want sex, I think women don’t want the sex they have,” she says. The session gets the biggest applause of the day.
5:05 p.m. Cute servers circle the chat room with trays of refreshing fruit smoothies. I’m starting to think Paltrow is a genius.
5:15 p.m. After a brief Q&A with Tracy Anderson, we’re onto the celebrity-packed keynote panel called Balls in the Air, which features Cameron Diaz, Tory Burch, Nicole Richie and Miranda Kerr, with Paltrow moderating. The convo is focused not on how these successful, beautiful women do it all, but how they choose what not to do. Diaz reveals why she hasn’t made a movie in over three years.
After being on the road continuously for her film career, “I just went, ‘I can’t really say who I am, to myself. Which is a hard thing to face up to,” says the actress, who married Benji Madden in 2015. “I can’t do the same things I’ve been doing for two decades…if I want to have a full life.” Richie’s tip on how she stays sane? “I like to wake up an hour before my kids, just so I can be alone.” The session ends on a classically Goop note, with Kerr revealing she once tried leech facials, and brought the leeches home because they kill them otherwise. “They’re in my koi pod,” she says.
Escherichia coli O157:H7 is an important foodborne pathogen that causes severe bloody diarrhea, hemorrhagic colitis, and hemolytic uremic syndrome.
Ruminant manure is a primary source of E. coli O157:H7 contaminating the environment and food sources. Therefore, effective interventions targeted at reducing the prevalence of fecal excretion of E. coli O157:H7 by cattle and sheep and the elimination of E. coli O157:H7 contamination of meat products as well as fruits and vegetables are required.
Bacteriophages offer the prospect of sustainable alternative approaches against bacterial pathogens with the flexibility of being applied therapeutically or for biological control purposes.
This article reviews the use of phages administered orally or rectally to ruminants and by spraying or immersion of fruits and vegetables as an antimicrobial strategy for controlling E. coli O157:H7. The few reports available demonstrate the potential of phage therapy to reduce E. coli O157:H7 carriage in cattle and sheep, and preparation of commercial phage products was recently launched into commercial markets.
However, a better ecological understanding of the phage E. coli O157:H7 will improve antimicrobial effectiveness of phages for elimination of E. coli O157:H7 in vivo.
Use of bacteriophages to control Escherichia coli O157:H7 in domestic ruminants, meat products, and fruit and vegetables
Foodborne Pathogens and Disease, June 2017, ahead of print, Wang Lili, Qu Kunli, Li Xiaoyu, Cao Zhenhui, Wang Xitao, Li Zhen, Song Yaxiong, and Xu Yongping, https://doi.org/10.1089/fpd.2016.2266
The source of the infection, caught over the half-term holidays, is not known, the school said. The severity of the illness has not been disclosed, but pupils in the same class were sent letters by Public Heath England.
A spokeswoman for the school said, in her best British bureaucratese, “Thurnby Lodge Primary has received no further notifications of such incidents and it is deemed likely that the child was infected outside of school during the holidays. The letters from Public Health England came via the academy and were just a precautionary measure.”
According to the New Zealand Herald, Taranaki District Health Board medical officer of health Dr Jonathan Jarman has started to raise awareness about Shiga toxin-producing E.coli (STEC) after research found the number of cases in the area was increasing but few people knew about it.
The research, by a medical student last year, found most cases were in children under the age of five who had been exposed to farm animals in the week prior to the onset of illness, Jarman said. Almost half the people affected were hospitalised and one in 10 people developed a life-threatening complication – hemolytic uremic syndrome.
Jarman said STEC, also known as verotoxin E.coli, was an organism carried in the intestines of cattle and other farm animals but the study found that virtually no one in the farming sector had heard about it.
“STEC is twice as common as leptospirosis which everyone knows about,” he said. “It’s a type of E.coli that produces a toxin and it can be quite serious in humans.”
It caused a severe gastrointestinal illness and was mainly a problem in areas where there was a lot of dairy farming and was most common around calving season.
The strain was first detected in humans in New Zealand in 1993, Jarman said. Last year there were 14 cases in Taranaki and so far this year there had been six.
No one had died from it in Taranaki but there had been deaths in other parts of the country.
ESR public health physician Jill Sherwood said there had been no increase in the number of STEC cases nationally. There were 205 reported last year and 125 so far this year.
Jarman distributed information to local organisations as well as a couple of national ones such as the Ministry for Primary Industries in his mission to raise awareness. The message had gone out to early learning centre in Taranaki and spread to other centres including some in Auckland.
“It is a very contagious disease. It’s quite easy to pick up. For that reason when we are notified about cases
Approximately 11,000,000 people visit the South Bank Parklands each year.
On Sept. 23, 2015, Brisbane’s South Bank Surf Club allegedly made up a large batch of raw-egg-based aioli sauce and served it for seven days.
At least 29 diners were sickened.
At the time, the manager of the club said the cause was “a bad batch of eggs’’ provided by a supplier. They said the eggs had been used in sauces served with seafood platters.
“We’ve been caught out, unfortunately. Our customers’ wellbeing is our priority and anyone with concerns can get in touch with us,” they said. “To rectify the problem, we are not making sauces in-house.’’
Guess they were too busy courting biz-cas types to worry about microbiology.
Lawyers for the restaurant on Thursday entered guilty pleas to 22 charges of serving unsafe food over eight days.
The charges did not arise from unhygienic practices and the company had no knowledge the food was unsafe, the court heard.
Western Australian hockey player Kelli Reilly had snacked on buffalo wings with aioli sauce with her team at the restaurant the day before they were due to play in the final of a masters competition in Brisbane.
They won gold at the tournament but soon after, Ms Reilly was hospitalised for three days and still suffers from the salmonella poisoning.
She has not been able to play hockey since and has sworn off aioli.
‘I’ve been through a lot, I’d probably not like to comment on it all because it has impacted me a lot and my family,’ she said outside court.
Tara Russell of Bournemouth Echo reports again this week that a review into the outbreak in Dorset was carried out, health chiefs have insisted – but the report is not available to the public.
Public Health England (PHE) says the public can only request to see the report detailing exactly what happened when 31 people contracted the O55 strain between July 2014 and November 2015 through a Freedom of Information request.
Families including some whose children have been left with lifelong health complications say they did not know the review existed and have branded it ‘disappointing and disgusting’ they have been kept in the dark.
The Daily Echo has lodged an official FOI request on behalf of the affected families and will receive a response in July.
Nurse Jessica Archer, who today suffers crippling head pains, fatigue and depression while her nephew Isaac Mortlock (right) endures severe seizures, must be peg fed every night and will need a kidney transplant as a result of the outbreak, said: “Without the Daily Echo we wouldn’t even know this report even existed and we are very interested to see it and we have the right to know. The families affected have so many unanswered questions and have to live with the effects of this outbreak forever but yet again we feel Public Health England are trying to sweep it under the carpet and hope that it will just go away.
“It is disappointing and disgusting this report has not already been made public let alone having to wait and wait still. We feel there have been a series of failures and this is the latest.”
The news comes after Jessica last month called for PHE to be held to account telling how her and her five-year-old nephew’s Isaac Mortlock’s lives have changed irreversibly, and accused the organisation of ‘a cover up.’
In response, PHE told the Daily Echo it carries out ‘routine outbreak reviews once investigations have ended’, adding it is ‘a learning organisation and reflects on outbreaks to identify lessons learnt and to continually improve our response.’
However at the time, the organisation refused to tell the Daily Echo exactly which lessons were learned.
It was only following a further request from this newspaper, PHE said a report was compiled however it has not been available to the public.
A spokesman said: “This report was not intended for external publication – it’s not standard procedure to publish outbreak reports externally due to patient confidentiality – however if interested parties would like to request a copy they can do this via our Freedom of Information portal.”
Outbreak investigations are routinely published while ensuring patient confidentiality.
Families say it is the latest in a string of ‘failures’ by Public Health England.
A spokesman from PHE added: “As with all outbreaks, PHE Health Protection Team ensured throughout their investigation that those affected were kept informed of any information that was uncovered at that time.”
That’s also bullshit.
And why UK health types feature prominently in our paper on when to go public for the benefit of public health.
Three years seems a bit long.
Going public: Early disclosure of food risks for the benefit of public health
NEHA, Volume 79.7, Pages 8-14
Benjamin Chapman, Maria Sol Erdozaim, Douglas Powell
Often during an outbreak of foodborne illness, there are health officials who have data indicating that there is a risk prior to notifying the public. During the lag period between the first public health signal and some release of public information, there are decision makers who are weighing evidence with the impacts of going public.
Multiple agencies and analysts have lamented that there is not a common playbook or decision tree for how public health agencies determine what information to release and when. Regularly, health authorities suggest that how and when public information is released is evaluated on a case-by-case basis without sharing the steps and criteria used to make decisions.
Information provision on its own is not enough. Risk communication, to be effective and grounded in behavior theory, should provide control measure options for risk management decisions. There is no indication in the literature that consumers benefit from paternalistic protection decisions to guard against information overload. A review of the risk communication literature related to outbreaks, as well as case studies of actual incidents, are explored and a blueprint for health authorities to follow is provided.
An Azle family wants to warn others after both their young boys were hospitalized with E. coli earlier this year.
“It’s awful. You can’t do anything but just sit there and watch your child hurt,” Emily Miller told WFAA.
Miller’s sons Brayden, 7, and Dylan, 5, were both diagnosed with an E. coli infection, and Dylan’s case impacted his kidneys. Miller said he required dialysis, and he was hospitalized for 27 days, including several nights in the ICU.
“It’s such a crazy thought that this could happen,” Miller said.
She was surprised by the intensity of the illness, but also by where her boys may have come into contact with E. coli. She said doctors believe they were likely contaminated while the family was visiting a petting zoo.
“I wasn’t aware that you could get it from animals and livestock,” Miller said.
She took the boys to the petting zoo back in January, and four days later her oldest was in the hospital.
Both brothers are now doing well, though Dylan is still on blood pressure medicine due to the illness, Miller said.
The Centers for Disease Control says petting zoos do pose risks, as livestock can carry E. coli bacteria. The CDC’s advice is to wash hands with soap and water immediately after being near animals, whether you touch them or not.
The CDC also says that soap and water is more effective than instant hand sanitizers, and if sanitizers are the only option, go ahead and use them but follow up with soap and water as soon as possible.
Erdozain G, Kukanich K, Chapman B, Powell D. 2012. Observation of public health risk behaviours, risk communication and hand hygiene at Kansas and Missouri petting zoos – 2010-2011. Zoonoses Public Health. 2012 Jul 30. doi: 10.1111/j.1863-2378.2012.01531.x. [Epub ahead of print]
Observation of public health risk behaviors, risk communication and hand hygiene at Kansas and Missouri petting zoos – 2010-2011Outbreaks of human illness have been linked to visiting settings with animal contact throughout developed countries. This paper details an observational study of hand hygiene tool availability and recommendations; frequency of risky behavior; and, handwashing attempts by visitors in Kansas (9) and Missouri (4), U.S., petting zoos. Handwashing signs and hand hygiene stations were available at the exit of animal-contact areas in 10/13 and 8/13 petting zoos respectively. Risky behaviors were observed being performed at all petting zoos by at least one visitor. Frequently observed behaviors were: children (10/13 petting zoos) and adults (9/13 petting zoos) touching hands to face within animal-contact areas; animals licking children’s and adults’ hands (7/13 and 4/13 petting zoos, respectively); and children and adults drinking within animal-contact areas (5/13 petting zoos each). Of 574 visitors observed for hand hygiene when exiting animal-contact areas, 37% (n=214) of individuals attempted some type of hand hygiene, with male adults, female adults, and children attempting at similar rates (32%, 40%, and 37% respectively). Visitors were 4.8x more likely to wash their hands when a staff member was present within or at the exit to the animal-contact area (136/231, 59%) than when no staff member was present (78/343, 23%; p<0.001, OR=4.863, 95% C.I.=3.380-6.998). Visitors at zoos with a fence as a partial barrier to human-animal contact were 2.3x more likely to wash their hands (188/460, 40.9%) than visitors allowed to enter the animals’ yard for contact (26/114, 22.8%; p<0.001, OR= 2.339, 95% CI= 1.454-3.763). Inconsistencies existed in tool availability, signage, and supervision of animal-contact. Risk communication was poor, with few petting zoos outlining risks associated with animal-contact, or providing recommendations for precautions to be taken to reduce these risks.
Best practices for planning events encouraging human-animal interactions
Zoonoses and Public Health 62:90-99, 2015
G. Erdozain , K. KuKanich , B. Chapman and D. Powell
Educational events encouraging human–animal interaction include the risk of zoonotic disease transmission. It is estimated that 14% of all disease in the US caused by Campylobacter spp., Cryptosporidium spp., Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) O157, non-O157 STECs, Listeria monocytogenes, nontyphoidal Salmonella enterica and Yersinia enterocolitica were attributable to animal contact. This article reviews best practices for organizing events where human–animal interactions are encouraged, with the objective of lowering the risk of zoonotic disease transmission.
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada correspondent Rob Mancini writes:
I hate hummus.
My wife loves it.
Concerns with potential Listeria contamination and food are on-going due to the ubiquitous nature of this pathogen. In Nov. 2016, there was a significant recall of hummus due to potential Listeria concerns with certain Sabra brand hummus products in both Canada and the US. Food producers, manufacturers, retail and foodservice operations are in a constant battle to control this problem and continually seeking new innovative products/solutions for its’ control.
A study published in 2006 found that a combination of citric acid, nisin, and proper hygienic practices served as an effective means to minimize growth of the pathogen in hummus. It may also be a good idea to take into consideration where the ingredients were sourced and ensuring that your facility are following and adhering to good GMP’s.
Lantana Foods, the company that supplied the hummus, notified Harris Teeter of the possible contamination, and the grocer promptly removed it from its cases.
Affected products include Fresh Foods Market Artisan Hummus Pine Nuts with UPC 7203602705.
Harris Teeter is using transaction data to notify shoppers who may have purchased the hummus, according to a press release on the company’s website.
If you purchased any hummus affected by the recall you should discard it immediately or return it to Harris Teeter for a full refund.
Listeriosis is a severe infection caused by eating food contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The disease typically affects children, the elderly, and adults with weakened immune systems.
To date, no listeria infections have been associated with the Harris Teeter hummus recall.
Al-Holy, M, Al-Qadiri,H, Lin, M, and Rasco, B. Inhibition of Listeria innocua in Hummus by a Combination of Nisin and Citric Acid. Journal of Food Protection, Vol. 69, No. 6, 2006, Pages 1322–1327