At least 5 sick with crypto: Raw milk from Moo View Dairy recalled by South Australian health types

There was this one time, about 1979, when me and my high school buddies fell into some tickets for Can-Am car racing, which none of us cared about.

So we stayed up all night as high school students do, and then I was the designated driver to Mosport, Ontario, a few hours away.

On the way we stopped at a truck stop off the 401 near Bowmanville, Ontario, and my friends, who were quite stoned, couldn’t stop laughing about the moo-moo cow creamer on every table.

It was pasteurized.

The stuff from Willunga Hill’s Moo View Dairy is not, and the dairy will be prohibited from selling and distributing raw cow’s milk after it was linked to at least five cases of gastroenteritis.

Brad Crouch, medical reporter at The Advertiser, writes, SA Health has taken the action under the Food Act 2001 and the South Australian Public Health Act 2011, after the sicknesses were linked to drinking unpasteurised (raw) cow’s milk.

SA Health Director of Public Health Associate Professor Kevin Buckett said the sale of raw cow’s milk for human consumption is illegal in Australia due to its high risk of contamination.

“We’ve confirmed at least five cases where people aged between three and 70 contracted gastrointestinal illness caused by the Cryptosporidium parasite after consuming raw cow’s milk products purchased from Moo View Dairy, and this number is likely to be higher,” he said.

“Luckily, these people did not require hospitalisation, but it is important to remember that raw cow’s milk products should not be consumed as they can contain harmful bacteria such as E.coli, salmonella, campylobacter, and listeria, as well as cryptosporidium.

“In June we noticed higher than expected numbers of cryptosporidiosis cases and following interviews and investigations, we identified Moo View Dairy’s raw cow’s milk as a common factor between five cases,” Assoc Prof Buckett said.

“We’ve also identified another two potential cases that implicate raw cow’s milk as the cause of illness.

And the next year, Mosport had this (and yes, that’s John (J.D.) Roberts doing some of the interviews for Much Music. He can be now found as chief White House correspondent for Fox News (gag me). Oh, and I arranged Teenage Head to play our high school in 1979.

Raw is risky.

244 now sick with Salmonella from sprouts in SA

An extra five South Australians have tested positive to Salmonella Saintpaul after eating contaminated bean sprouts, bringing the total number of victims to 244.

SA Health announced the new figure on Wednesday after testing confirmed the link to the popular Asian garnish.

sprouts.raw.milk.barfWhile the source of the salmonella remains a mystery, the contamination has been linked to the consumption of raw bean sprouts sourced from Queensland and grown and packaged in South Australia.

A spokeswoman from the health department told The Advertiser investigations were ongoing.

One of the victims included a pregnant woman who was rushed to hospital after suffering abdominal pain about two weeks ago.

Usually, the state records just 15 to 20 cases of Salmonella Saintpaul annually.

SA Health chief public health officer Professor Paddy Phillips advised consumers — as well as restaurant and cafe owners — to cook all bean sprouts and avoid eating them raw.

“We are working closely with the producers, suppliers and handlers of the sprouts and (we) are continuing to investigate,” Prof Phillips said.

sprouts.barf“(We’re) doing forensic investigation of the factories to work out where in the processing the salmonella might be.”

It is the second salmonella scare to hit SA this year after dozens of people across Australia were struck down with Salmonella Anatum from eating prepacked leafy greens.

The lettuce, supplied by Tripod Farmers in Victoria and sold at Coles and Woolworths among other companies, was recalled from shelves across the nation in February.

An updated table of raw sprout related outbreaks is available at: http://barfblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/Sprout-associated-outbreaks-4-27-16.xlsx

Australia sucks at food safety: 233 sick with Salmonella from sprouts in SA, warning only issued now

A few weeks ago I received an e-mail from another satisfied subscriber – we’re over 70,000 now – saying why was I talking about the risk of sprouts; all those outbreaks were years ago.

sprouts.batzNow, the Department of Health in South Australia is warning SA residents not to eat raw bean sprouts following a big jump in the number of reported salmonella cases.

Over the past 11 days there have been 108 salmonella cases reported in South Australia, which normally sees around 15 to 20 cases each year.

Since the start of December, SA Health has been notified of 233 cases of salmonella. Of these 233 cases, 43 people have been hospitalised.

“Our investigations have indicated to us that it is likely that the consumption of raw beansprouts is contributing to this increase,” said SA Health’s chief public health officer, Professor Paddy Phillips.

Duh.

“As a result we are today advising South Australians to cook all bean sprouts and avoid eating raw bean sprouts.”

Duh.

U.S. has been advising that for a deade.

“We also want to alert food retailers such as restaurants and cafes not to serve raw bean sprouts until further notice. We are working closely with the producers, suppliers and handlers of the sprouts and are continuing to investigate.

jimmy.johns_.sproutsBut 20-year-old examples mean nothing when, it hasn’t happened here.

A table of sprout-related outbreaks can be found at http://barfblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/Sprout-associated-outbreaks-2-24-16.xlsx

And never underestimate the power of denial.

Erdozain, M.S., Allen, K.J., Morley, K.A. and Powell, D.A. 2012. Failures in sprouts-related risk communication. Food Control. 10.1016/j.foodcont.2012.08.022

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0956713512004707?v=s5

Abstract

Nutritional and perceived health benefits have contributed to the increasing popularity of raw sprouted seed products. In the past two decades, sprouted seeds have been a recurring food safety concern, with at least 55 documented foodborne outbreaks affecting more than 15,000 people. A compilation of selected publications was used to yield an analysis of the evolving safety and risk communication related to raw sprouts, including microbiological safety, efforts to improve production practices, and effectiveness of communication prior to, during, and after sprout-related outbreaks. Scientific investigation and media coverage of sprout-related outbreaks has led to improved production guidelines and public health enforcement actions, yet continued outbreaks call into question the effectiveness of risk management strategies and producer compliance. Raw sprouts remain a high-risk product and avoidance or thorough cooking are the only ways that consumers can reduce risk; even thorough cooking messages fail to acknowledge the risk of cross-contamination. Risk communication messages have been inconsistent over time with Canadian and U.S. governments finally aligning their messages in the past five years, telling consumers to avoid sprouts. Yet consumer and industry awareness of risk remains low. To minimize health risks linked to the consumption of sprout products, local and national public health agencies, restaurants, retailers and producers need validated, consistent and repeated risk messaging through a variety of sources.

 

Cow-share program a ‘sham’ Australian dairy farmers plead guilty to selling raw milk

A South Australian dairy farming couple charged over a cow-sharing scheme have pleaded guilty to selling milk that did not comply with national standards.

Mark and Helen TylerMark and Helen Tyler from Willunga Hill, south of Adelaide, supplied unpasteurised milk weekly to shareholders.

It is illegal to sell raw milk for human consumption in South Australia, but not to drink it from your own cow.

In May last year, a magistrate found the Tylers’ “cow-share program” was a sham and convicted them of two counts of breaching the Food Act.

The couple appealed to the Supreme Court and won a retrial, which was due to start today, but instead Mr and Mrs Tyler pleaded guilty.

SA Health director of public health services Dr Kevin Buckett said the department had always held the view that the Tylers’ cow-share scheme constituted the sale of milk.

“We are pleased with this outcome and we will continue to protect the public from the risks associated with drinking raw cow’s milk,” Dr Buckett said.

Sentencing submissions are being held tomorrow.

Food safety sucks in some S. Aust. day and agedcare centres

Eleven daycare centres were among more than 800 food preparation places issued warning notices under food safety laws last year.

dirty.jobs.daycare.e.coliThirteen aged care sites were also given written warnings in 2014-15 because of food safety concerns.

SA Health data from local council inspections shows that more than 9000 food businesses across the state were checked. The vast majority were given approval.

Health Minister Jack Snelling said under the SA Health Food Act Report in 2014-15, local government environmental health officers issued food businesses with 803 written warnings, 328 improvement notices, 114 expiation notices and four prohibition orders.

“Three businesses were prosecuted and found guilty of breaches under the Food Act 2001,” Mr Snelling said.

These businesses were Champion Bakery at Port Wakefield, fined a total of $171,000; Omega Foods at Hindmarsh ($71,000); and Garam Masala Indian Cuisine Dernancourt ($6660).

Mr Snelling noted that businesses are stepping up to new laws.

“What is pleasing to see is that overall the great majority of South Australian food businesses that were inspected complied with food safety standards,” he said.

SA Health Director of Food and Controlled Drugs Dr Fay Jenkins said the public had an important role to play in alerting authorities to potential food safety issues.

“Councils received 1082 complaints and reports from the public, which resulted in 640 inspections,” Dr Jenkins said.

“Of the complaints, the highest percentage related to staff personal hygiene or food handling, unclean premises and pest infestation.

“I encourage anyone with concerns about hygiene or food safety practices in a food business to contact their council who will ensure the matter is investigated and rectified.

Everyone has a camera.

Spit season: South Australians warned of Salmonella risk linked to meats cooked on spits

South Australians are being warned to take care when using home rotisseries or spits after they were linked to more than 20 people falling ill last financial year.

lamb-on-spitHealth Minister Jack Snelling said SA Health investigations identified home cooked pig and lamb on the spit as the main causes of salmonella outbreaks at two separate home gatherings in 2014-15.

“The use of home rotisseries and spits is becoming increasingly common across the state as a fun way to feed large groups, especially with the weather warming up and people wanting to cook outside,” Mr Snelling said.

“Proper storage, including hygiene and refrigeration are vital so that dangerous bacteria do not get the chance to multiply before the cooking process takes place.

“If you don’t have an appropriate place to safely store a whole animal we advise that you pick the raw meat up from the butcher or supermarket as close to preparation time as possible.”

SA Health director Dr Fay Jenkins said ensuring the meat had been fully cooked through was essential in preventing salmonella.

She said the best way to ensure meat was cooked through was to place a thermometer into the thickest part of the meat to measure the temperature.

“Meat, particularly poultry, needs to reach a temperature of 75 degrees Celsius to be completely safe,” she said.

Duh alert: Salmonella outbreak investigation at Australian hospital rules out imported fish (check the egg dishes)

Testing has ruled out imported fish as the source of a Salmonella outbreak at Burnside Hospital in Adelaide, SA Health says.

fish.headsEleven patients have developed gastroenteritis caused by Salmonella since July, one needing re-admission for more treatment.

A statement from the hospital last week said the presence of the bacteria was confirmed at the hospital on September 8 and all recent and current patients had been informed about the issue.

Imported fish was identified as a possible source of the outbreak, but SA Health said testing had now ruled that out.

Cross-contamination from eggs is under investigation as a possible cause of the outbreak, for which the hospital apologized last week.

sprout.salad.aust.aug.15“The hospital has meticulously followed all advice provided by SA Health and the Eastern Health Authority in our efforts to reduce the possibility of others contracting the illness,” it said.

And that advice is not to use pasteurized eggs in dishes for those in a hospital – those immunocompromised – and serve raw alfalfa sprouts (pic from a Brisbane hospital, left).

Some advice: don’t serve raw sprouts and only use pasteurized eggs.

S Australia dairy farmers call for stricter regulations around raw-milk production in the wake of Victorian law changes

The South Australian Dairy farmers’ Association says local raw-milk producers need to be better regulated to protect consumers.

bath.milkThe Victorian Government now requires raw bath-milk producers to either pasteurise the product to make it safe to drink, or add a bittering-agent to make it unpalatable.

The South Australian Association’s President, David Basham, says he’s been watching Victoria’s response with interest.

“I am concerned by the loopholes, but we need to look to see what can be done in South Australia to actually protect the general public who are consuming this raw milk.

“I think it’s something we do need to move relatively quickly on.”

He says at the very least, consumers who want to buy raw milk should be protected, but making it unpalatable could be a step too far.

“At the moment, most of the people that are selling raw milk are operating outside the licensed dairy structure and therefore aren’t even regulated by the same structure we are in South Australia for pasteurised milk.

“Therefore the risk is even greater, and we need to make sure that we try and manage those risks.

“Raw milk at the moment is a very risky product to consume, so I would advise any member of the public not to do so.”

South Australian restaurant fined for breaching food safety code by having rodent droppings

The owners of Garam Masala Indian Cuisine, Dernancourt, today pleaded guilty in the Holden Hill Magistrates Court to three counts of failing to comply with a requirement of the food standards code.

Garam Masala Indian Cuisine, DernancourtA further 17 counts of the same charge were dropped.

In sentencing today, Magistrate Cathy Deland said the restaurant had made some efforts to exterminate the pest problem but failed to ensure they did not return.

“The offences are serious and I have no doubt there was significant public concern, and general health concerns, over the conditions in the restaurant,” she said.

The court had earlier heard the owners of the restaurant were looking to sell the business after a drop in revenue caused by the negative publicity surrounding the case.

Magistrate Deland fined Garam Masala $5000 plus court and prosecution costs.

‘Score-on-the-door’ food hygiene rating for SA cafes and restaurants

The state of South Australia is introducing a new “score-on-the-door” food hygiene safety rating for cafes and restaurants as the State Government overhauls the Public Health Act.

Scores on doors sounds better.

Adelaide Now reports the Government wants food businesses to adopt the system, with a score out of five displayed on a shop’s door according to its level of food-safety scores_doors_featurecompliance.

It is also planning to adopt a new statewide food safety standard and introduce a registration system for food outlets as part of the reforms.

Hundreds of outlets are caught each year for serious breaches of food hygiene standards.

Health inspectors found rotten meat, maggots in chicken stuffing, puddings with listeria and mice in pantries at cafes, restaurants and takeaway food outlets last financial year.

A parliamentary committee investigation into food safety programs last September recommended the introduction of a statewide score-on-the-door rating system.

Health Minister Jack Snelling said SA Health would work with other jurisdictions, including NSW and with local government and industry, during the development of the system.

A pilot “scores on doors” project is expected to be introduced on a voluntary basis next year. Similar schemes are running in London, Los Angeles, Singapore, Brisbane and Sydney.

But the best ones, like Los Angeles, New York City and Toronto are not voluntary; sorta defeats the purpose.

The Restaurant and Catering SA association said the score system would mean more red tape to businesses. “We would prefer to see a policy which endorses training of staff (in larry.the.cable.guy.health.inspectorfood safety),” chief executive Sally Neville said.

Why not both?

We have some experience with restaurant inspection disclosure systems.

Filion, K. and Powell, D.A. 2009. The use of restaurant inspection disclosure systems as a means of communicating food safety information. Journal of Foodservice 20: 287-297.

The World Health Organization estimates that up to 30% of individuals in developed countries become ill from food or water each year. Up to 70% of these illnesses are estimated to be linked to food prepared at foodservice establishments. Consumer confidence in the safety of food prepared in restaurants isfragile, varying significantly from year to year, with many consumers attributing foodborne illness to foodservice. One of the key drivers of restaurant choice is consumer perception of the hygiene of a restaurant. Restaurant hygiene information is something consumers desire, and when available, may use to make dining decisions.

Filion, K. and Powell, D.A. 2011. Designing a national restaurant inspection disclosure system for New Zealand.
 
Journal of Food Protection 74(11): 1869-1874
.

The World Health Organization estimates that up to 30% of individuals in developed countries become ill from contaminated food or water each year, and up to 70% of these illnesses are estimated to be linked to food service facilities. The aim of restaurant inspections is to reduce foodborne outbreaks and enhance consumer confidence in food service. Inspection disclosure systems have been developed as tools for consumers and incentives for food service operators. Disclosure systems are common in developed ny_rest_inspect_disclosure_0_storycountries but are inconsistently used, possibly because previous research has not determined the best format for disclosing inspection results. This study was conducted to develop a consistent, compelling, and trusted inspection disclosure system for New Zealand. Existing international and national disclosure systems were evaluated. Two cards, a letter grade (A, B, C, or F) and a gauge (speedometer style), were designed to represent a restaurant’s inspection result and were provided to 371 premises in six districts for 3 months. Operators (n = 269) and consumers (n = 991) were interviewed to determine which card design best communicated inspection results. Less than half of the consumers noticed cards before entering the premises; these data indicated that the letter attracted more initial attention (78%) than the gauge (45%). Fifty-eight percent (38) of the operators with the gauge preferred the letter; and 79% (47) of the operators with letter preferred the letter. Eighty-eight percent (133) of the consumers in gauge districts preferred the letter, and 72% (161) of those in letter districts preferring the letter. Based on these data, the letter method was recommended for a national disclosure system for New Zealand.