John Krasinski competes in a vomit-off against Stephen Colbert

Practicing one of his favorite things, actor John Krasinski competed in a vomit-off against “The Late Show” host Stephen Colbert on Tuesday (Jan. 5). Previously, the “13 Hours” actor’s wife, Emily Blunt, appeared on the show and took Colbert to task on one of his famous comedic bits.

Stemming from a comedy sketch he did with Steve Carrell, titled “Waiters Who Are Nauseated By Food,” the actor did his best pretend puking during a read-through of the climactic scene from “A Few Good Men.”

Sex cereal to boost breakfast

Who needs testosterone to keep that male libido up after 50?

sex_bag_femaleCanada comes to the rescue again with sex-cereal.

Once confined to raw oysters, the world of aphrodisiacs has now expanded to sex cereal, billed by the Canadian manufacturer as the world’s most passionate cereal and the world’s first gender-based whole food.

sexcereal_bag_male“Because at 6:30 a.m. with bleary eyes and breath like a landfill corpse, who isn’t chomping at the bit to get bizzy.”

The Canadian sex cereal bit starts about the 2:40 mark.

Sorry my Australian friends can’t see this.

It’s nice that Colbert is doing the job of Health Canada and drawing attention to food hucksterism.


‘Fast food should be made of fast animals’ Stephen Colbert on horse meat

Eater summarizes the latest, best take on the on-going horse meat scandal (U.S. fish are next, and, as I told Huffington Post today, if all these big chains with their food-safety-is-first traceability schemes don’t horse-hamburgerknow what’s in the products they’re hawking, how are mere mortals and consumers to know?).

Last night on the Colbert Report, Stephen Colbert took on “a story that is rocking the world of meat,” the European horse meat scandal. He goes through the back story of how the scandal spread through Europe with blame landing on Romania and perhaps organized crime. And he is not at all surprised the mob might be involved because, after all, “if you’re going to leave a horse head in a bed, why waste all that good body meat?”

But Colbert doesn’t really understand what everyone is so upset about. As he says, “We don’t feel guilty when we happily consume the rest of Noah’s Ark” — and he also jokes that Europeans are all worried about eating horse burgers “instead of their usual delicacy of pickled sheep brain.” In the end, he proclaims, “There’s nothing wrong with eating horse burgers. Fast food should be made of fast animals.” Scandal over?

Thank you, Australia: norovirus sweeps Northern Hemisphere; ‘be polite and vomit into your elbow’

Since September, more than 140 outbreaks in the U.S. have been caused by the new Sydney strain of norovirus. It may not be unusually dangerous; some scientists don’t think it is. But it is different, and many people might not be able to fight off its gut-wrenching effects.

The new strain is making people sick in Japan, Western Europe, and other parts of the world. It was first identified last year in Australia and norovirus-2called the Sydney strain.

A report by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states the Sydney strain is now accounting for about 60 percent of norovirus outbreaks.

Sometimes mistakenly called stomach flu, the virus causes bouts of vomiting and diarrhea for a few days.

Every two or three years, a new strain evolves — the last was in 2009. The Sydney strain’s appearance has coincided with a spike in influenza, perhaps contributing to the perception that this is a particularly bad flu season in the U.S.

Norovirus is also the most common cause of food poisoning in the U.S.

Each year, noroviruses cause an estimated 21 million illnesses and 800 deaths, the CDC says.

Seven outbreaks have been confirmed across North Carolina so far in 2013. Years with new strains tend to have the highest numbers of cases because virtually no one has immunity, said Ralph Baric, a vomit-cruise-226x300professor of epidemiology at the Gillings School of Global Public Health at UNC-Chapel Hill.

Noroviruses are more contagious than most viruses. People shed millions of the virus particles in their stool and vomit said Dr. Zack Moore, a medical epidemiologist for the state health department, but it only takes between 10 and 100 particles to infect someone.

“It’s such a common infection because it’s very hardy. It can live on surfaces in the environment if it gets onto them, and the usual types of disinfectants aren’t effective against it,” Moore said. “If there are areas that have been contaminated, you have to use a dilute bleach solution to kill the norovirus.”

CDC says, “proper hand hygiene, environmental disinfection, and isolation of ill persons remain the mainstays of norovirus prevention and control.”

For those infected, there’s really no medicine. They just have to ride it out for the day or two of severe symptoms, and guard against dehydration, experts said.

The illness got the attention of comedian Stephen Colbert, who this week tweeted: “Remember, if you’re in public and have the winter vomiting bug, be polite and vomit into your elbow.”


Rotting bear meat at Fredericton restaurant nets $400 fine

Eight months after rotting bear meat was discovered in a freezer at the Mandarin Palace Restaurant in Fredericton, New Brunswick (that’s in Canada), the owner has been fined $400 in court.

CBC News reports that Le Binh Tina Tu, 61, who owns the Mandarin Palace, pleaded guilty to charges after the bear meat was discovered in a cooler at the Chinese restaurant during a routine inspection by the Department of Health on Dec. 20, 2011.

An inspection record posted on the government’s website on Dec. 21 said, "Food must be purchased from an approved source. Wild animals are not approved."

Reclaim the name: say it now and say it proud pink slime

I was flattered that Stephen Colbert repeated my advice to American beef processors to reclaim, rather than shun, pink slime.

“We’re here, it’s steer, technically.

“Forget ‘Dude, it’s beef’ from now on it’s ‘Bro, it’s slime.’”

Video here, but not in all countries

Bear meat café reopens; ‘I am preparing everything brand new, my chicken balls my egg rolls’

The Mandarin Palace Restaurant in in Fredericton, New Brunswick (that’s in Canada), which was closed after rotting bear meat was discovered in a freezer, has reopened after a reinspection by Department of Health on Thursday.

There’s a note on the inspector’s report that says a food course must be completed as discussed with the business owners Johnny and Tina Tu.

"I will be reopened today," said Tu. "I am preparing everything brand new, my chicken balls and my egg rolls."

Tu said she sat down with government investigators to discuss how and why rancid parts of a black bear were found in her restaurant’s cooler. She told The Daily Gleaner she agreed to keep the bear for one of her customers, but the customer later told her to keep the bear.

Tu didn’t know what to do with it and was getting conflicting advice on how to dispose of it.

"I hope everybody understands that I never touched the bear. I didn’t eat it and I wouldn’t serve it to people," Tu said.

Tu said customers know that chicken is chicken and beef is beef.

"They can taste. They know. There’s the difference. I don’t want people to be scared. I didn’t touch anything with the bear," she said.

The Health Department said the condition of the bear meat created a high risk for cross-contamination. Officials told Tu and her husband Johnny — the restaurant’s co-owners — the cooler where the bear was stored had to be stripped bare of its contents and sanitized prior to reinspection. The department also said it would provide information on food-handling techniques and food safety.

Mr. (bathtub) Cheese sickens hundreds with salmonella in Utah

 Food hucksters sell nostalgia. See Michael Pollan on The Colbert Report for a fine example (video only works in the U.S.).

Biking home with Sorenne yesterday from school, a 20-something was walking a Brisbane sidewalk with pallets of strawberries and yelled out, “Want to buy some strawberries?”


He then sold a pallet to the owner of a shoe store.

The Salt Lake Tribune reports that some 2,100 Utahns – people who live in Utah, I guess — have been sickened with salmonella from homemade queso fresco.

The Salt Lake Valley Health Department has tracked down one source of the outbreak — an unnamed man dubbed "Mr. Cheese" who was making the product with raw milk and selling it to a Salt Lake City restaurant/deli.

The health department has confirmed that 73 people were sickened with the illness that causes diarrhea, fever and abdominal pain. But they estimate that hundreds more were ill and never reported it to the health department.

"They should not be purchasing food products in shopping center parking lots, [from people] distributing it out of their trunks or door to door," said Royal DeLegge, director of environmental health at the health department. "When you go into a retail setting, a deli or a store, you’re looking for labeling on the products."

The cheese probe took three years, involved a criminal investigator and extended to a fast-food franchise where Mr. Cheese’s wife worked.

People began to get sick in 2009 with Salmonella Newport, and the health department warned people not to buy the Mexican-style soft cheese from unapproved sources. Another 22 Newport cases popped up in 2010. The health department couldn’t find a common cause but heard of a woman selling cheese in a parking lot.

By June this year, another 32 people were sick with the strain. They commonly identified four restaurants and a market, where the local and state health department took samples of their queso fresco and samples from preparation areas. It found a positive DNA match from the cheese in the restaurant/deli.

That’s when the police got involved.

The Utah Department of Agriculture and Food had a name of a potential manufacturer of the cheese, who had a criminal past.

A criminal investigator for the county’s District Attorney’s Office put together a photo lineup for the restaurant owner, who identified his queso fresco source and called him "Mr. Cheese."

The health department later learned the man — whom they aren’t naming — made the cheese in his home using raw milk from a Midway dairy that is not authorized to sell raw milk. The man also is not licensed to manufacture cheese.
Food manufacturers are not allowed to produce products in their home because of the risk of contamination from sources such as pets and children.

Mr. Cheese’s wife may have contaminated her workplace with the queso fresco. Four customers and a food handler at four locations of a fast-food chain were sickened this year.