Food Safety Talk 161: Two shows for the price of one

The episode starts with a discussion on food safety media coverage, Chipotle and fish-related worms (anisakiasis and cod worms). Don and Ben then talk New Jersey, Thor, British scandals and get into a lengthy segment on how cockroaches, flies and other critters can impact the risk of foodborne illness. The guys then get into a bunch of listener feedback on lava rock and Clostridium botulinum control in canned beverages. The conversation goes to Toxoplasma and entrepreneurialism and Mongolian style grill cooking. The episode ends on the differences in food safety between 41°F and 42°F, in North Carolina.

Download the show on iTunes or here.

Show notes so you can follow along at home:

E. coli O157 outbreak at Marine base in San Diego and chest thumping

The leading cause of immobilizing U.S. troops?

Foodborne illness.

My former dean was known as Dr. Clorox while serving in Vietnam.

I used to give training sessions to food types headed for Iraq and Afghanistan from Fort Riley (in Manhattan, Kansas) and would sheepishly say, I have no idea what you’re going to face in terms of potable water, but bleach is your friend.

I reported in Nov. 2017 that a bunch of Marines training in San Diego got sick from Shiga-toxin producing E. coli.

The eventual number would be about 220.

Food safety lawyer Bill Marler wrote the other day that the outbreak “seemed to fall a bit below the radar.”

That means below his litigation radar, not the public awareness radar. Yesterday he filed a lawsuit in the Southern District Court of California against Sodexo Inc. on behalf of Illinois resident, Vincent Grano who developed an E. coli O157:H7 infection from food served at the cafeteria and mess hall at a Marine Corps Recruit Depot in San Diego.

Sodexo, a Delaware company, provides food and facility management services for the United States Marine Corps Depot in San Diego. Mr. Grano is represented by Marler Clark, the food safety law firm, and Gordon and Holmes, a local San Diego firm.

Marler also wrote the other day that two of his blogs made the Top 30 Food Safety Blogs, Websites & Newsletters to Follow in 2018 by Feedspot.com.

I don’t pay attention to this kind of shit and wouldn’t unless Marler’s chest-thumping could be heard across the Pacific Ocean.

Maybe he’s like Sarah Palin and looks out and sees me.

It’s nice to be included in some BS list of top-30 food safety bloggers, but it’s better to be #1.

That would be barfblog.com.

And we’re not trying.

It is called barfblog…

When I woke up this morning I didn’t think I’d be blogging about this.

Zee news reports:
A video filmed in Zhengzhou in China is going viral and you may not even want to watch this one. A hungry woman in the video can be seen mixing rice balls in the loo and eating it.
The lady, in the presence of a group of onlookers, can be seen taking a bite from one of the balls after mixing them in the urinal. What is even bizarre is that the woman looks to be enjoying the taste of those rice balls.
According to local media, the woman works at Tenfu Group, a China-based company that specialises in tea products. In the video, she can be heard saying: “I will fry them in it (the urinal). It still has water inside. It is the same as frying food.
She was not forced to eat it, but in fact did it out of her own choice. “Let me be the first one to eat,” she can be heard saying.
And it looks like she was not the only one. Two other ladies can also be heard relishing the rice balls. “It tastes good – yummy,” the can be heard saying.
Reports suggest that the idea behind this exercise was to show that the washrooms were extremely clean and that they observed high level of cleanliness there as well. And the big meal in the bathroom was just an experiment to put forth their point.
The video was reportedly filmed on July 16. Ever since it was shared on social media, the vomit-inducing video has gone viral.

 

Cyclospora contaminated food in the US, health alert issued

Cyclospora is one of those pathogens spread through poop and water/food tends to be the most favorable vehicle of transmission.

The Federal Safety and Inspection Service has issued a health alert over certain meat products over concern for Cyclospora.
The agency is telling people to be extra cautious with beef pork and poultry salad and wrap products out of Caito Foods LLC, in Indianapolis, Indiana.
The items with “best by” or “sell by” dates ranging from July 18th to July 23rd are under the alert. 
The problem within Caito Foods is related to the lettuce supplier, Fresh Express. The chopped romaine is being recalled.
Cyclospora infection, defined by the Centers for Disease Control, is an intestinal illness caused by a parasite. The infection can cause Cyclosporiasis.
The symptoms of Cyclosporiasis include loss of appetite, weight loss, cramping, bloating, nausea, fatigue, and other flu-like symptoms.

‘He would be dead right now’ Canadian family warns parents after 2-year-old contracts E. coli infection

There is so much I want to write about, to get the daily buzz of the blog, but blogs don’t last, and don’t pay the bills.

What’s important to me is the pic, below, and everything I can do to help them succeed.

I’ll work on books (which also don’t pay the bills, but may last longer).

Julian Kolsut of Chek reports that a Parksville family is at the B.C. Children’s Hospital in Vancouver this weekend after their two-year-old toddler contracted an E. coli Infection — that his father Aaron Hughes says was not diagnosed until it was almost too late.

“Be persistent… if we didn’t stick to our guns and react, he would be dead right now,” said Hughes.

It all started when 2-year-old Jaxon starting to act “off” on Tuesday, both of his parents thought he may have had heatstroke and made sure to take him out of the sun and keep him hydrated.

“He was out in the sun and he became really lethargic really fast, didn’t have an appetite, a fever kicked in quickly and then the diarrhea started,” said Aarons wife Jolene Secord.

After contacting the nurse’s line, they were given the same advice, but eventually Jaxon started vomiting. A visit to the walk-in clinic resulted in a different diagnosis, a possible bacterial infection, but while at the clinic they noticed blood in his diaper.

“They did take a swab of his green bowl movements but sent us home,” said Secord.

They were told to continue keeping an eye on him and taking care of him.

The parents say on Wednesday the vomiting and bleeding got worse, and after rushing Jaxon to the Nanaimo Regional General Hospital they were told again it may be a bacterial infection, and that he may have had a torn fissure. After speaking to a nutritionist they were sent home.

Aaron says he couldn’t see the fissure, and was confused the mucus coming out of his toddler’s behind was also bloody.

When his 18-year-old daughter called him when he was shopping for vaseline for his son in Nanaimo on Thursday and was told Jackson’s symptoms were worse, he told them to call and ambulance at that he would meet them at the hospital.

“We weren’t wasting any time… but they couldn’t find his stools [that were sent in for testing]” said Hughes.

“The doctor then came into the room [the next day] and said, “I think we found the source” and he didn’t look too happy, [the doctor] tracked down the stools and said the test came back positive for E. coli O157:H7.”

He was immediately airlifted to the B.C. Children’s Hospital in Vancouver and currently, among many other issues with his health, does not have any functioning kidneys and has a damaged pancreas.

Jaxon is undergoing dialysis, transfusion and other treatments, and his mom says his state changes by the hour.

“At this point, they don’t see the kidneys waking up… it could be a long-term thing… every hour seems to change for Jaxon,” said Secord. “We will see a positive, we will see a negative, we will see a positive.”

The exact cause is unknown, but the family says they suspect it came from deer feces, as the animal can carry the O157:H7 strain. They think Jackson may have come in contact with it outside.  Contaminated food is also a possibility.

“We almost have a family of deer living [on our property]” said Hughes. “We have apple trees on our property and they [the deers] live off that stuff, and that can transport diseases.”

Both parents also say the unfortunate incident is a reminder to always listen to your gut.

“If we would have stuck to what they were telling us then we would have lost him… and if we waited he could have had brain damage, heart failure,” said Hughes.

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1 dead, 25 sick: No fatal accident inquiry over girl’s E. coli death

BBC reports there will not be a fatal accident inquiry (FAI) into the death of a three-year-old girl from Dunbartonshire following an E. coli outbreak in 2016.

The Crown Office had previously said South Lanarkshire-based Errington Cheese would not face prosecution over the child’s death.

The firm’s Dunsyre Blue was named the most likely source of the outbreak.

The Crown Office said it had considered “all the relevant matters” before ruling out an FAI.

A total of 26 cases of the same strain of E. coli O157 were identified between July and September 2016 as a result of the outbreak, which left 17 people requiring hospital treatment.

A report published by Health Protection Scotland concluded in March 2017 that the source of the infection was consumption of an unpasteurised cows’ milk cheese.

Their incident management team found that potentially pathogenic E. coli were able to enter and survive the cheese production process at the food business.

However, Errington Cheese has repeatedly questioned the quality of the investigation and any suggestion that their product was responsible.

Always tragic: Iowa student dies from complications of E. coli

Southeast Polk Community School District officials say a student has died as a result of complications of E. coli.

No mention in early media reports is made of what kind of E coli was involved.

Willowbrook Elementary officials confirm Natalie Baker, a second grade student, died unexpectedly on Friday. Natalie’s mother said the death was very sudden, and urges parents to be on the lookout for signs of illness in their children, especially if they complain of a stomachache.

 

I’m known as the flyslayer around the home: More debate on the role of houseflies in E. coli transmission

The ecology of Escherichia coli O157:H7 is not well understood. The aims of this study were to determine the prevalence of and characterize E. coli O157:H7 associated with houseflies (HF).

 Musca domestica L. HF (n = 3,440) were collected from two sites on a cattle farm over a 4-month period and processed individually for E. coli O157:H7 isolation and quantification. The prevalence of E. coli O157:H7 was 2.9 and 1.4% in HF collected from feed bunks and a cattle feed storage shed, respectively. E. coli O157:H7 counts ranged from 3.0 × 101 to 1.5 × 105 CFU among the positive HF. PCR analysis of the E. coli O157:H7 isolates revealed that 90.4, 99.2, 99.2, and 100% of them (n = 125) possessed the stx1, stx2, eaeA, and fliC genes, respectively.

Large populations of HF on cattle farms may play a role in the dissemination of E. coli O157:H7 among animals and to the surrounding environment.

Association of Escherichia coli O157:H7 with houseflies on a cattle farm

July 2018

Applied and Environmental Microbiology vol. 84 no. 14

Muhammad Alam and Ludek Zurek

doi: 10.1128/AEM.70.12.7578-7580.2004

http://aem.asm.org/content/70/12/7578?ijkey=717a5417861fddb53638f51da6eecec048234a81&keytype2=tf_ipsecsha

Over 500 sick: E. coli found in well water at zip line attraction in Tennessee

Tennessee’s Department of Health says testing has confirmed E. coli in well water at a zipline attraction.

The announcement comes after an outbreak of gastrointestinal illness among visitors at CLIMB Works Zipline Canopy Tour, WATE reported.

While tourists continue to enjoy the park, management is working to fix the drinking water.

“I did notice signs not to drink the water. So, I didn’t know if that was something normal everyday or something going on,” LaRie Roe said.

A new filtration system and bottled water for guests have been added. The park is offering refunds for anyone affected with any illness.

Food Safety Talk 159: Hot Tongs

Don and Ben get together in a room in Salt Lake City with a few listeners and talk about their week at IAFP, online shopping, selling soup on Facebook, roundtables and Gary Acuff’s Ivan Parkin lecture. The guy’s discussion goes to a few items of listener feedback on grilling techniques, peanut grinders and restaurant ratings. They talk about Listeria in European frozen vegetables and intentional poisoning of co-workers. The episode ends on in-studio questions on communicating environmental sampling to produce processors and IAFP membership benefits.

Food Safety Talk 159 can be downloaded here or on iTunes.

Show notes so you can follow along at home: