E. coli O111:H8: Chaource Lincet and Gaugry raw milk cheeses recalled in France

A few hundred Chaource raw milk cheese brands Lincet and Gaugry, sold throughout France, are subject to a recall procedure after the demonstration of the presence of Escherichia coli. A check has highlighted in these products, manufactured by the Lincet cheese factory in Vaudes in the Aube, the presence of Escherichia coli O111: H8, indicates the cheese Friday in a statement.

This bacterium is likely to cause serious problems in anyone consuming the product, she adds. Nearly 700 Chaource AOP cheeses of 500 grams raw milk, bearing the lot number 227.210 and with a deadline of consumption to 27 September 2019, are concerned, according to the press release.

Lincet brand cheeses have been sold in a variety of supermarket chains, both traditional and fresh, while Gaugry branded cheeses have been distributed in the dairy and market channels.

12-year-old Oklahoma girl lives with constant reminder of E. coli outbreak nine years ago

In Aug. 2008, 26-year-old Chad Ingle had a meal at the Country Cottage in Locust Grove, Oklahoma, a popular family-owned buffet-style restaurant.

Nine days later, Chad was dead from E. coli O111.

By the end of the outbreak, 341 people had been sickened with E. coli O111, all from eating at the country diner in a town of 1,423 people.

A paper describing the investigation was published in 2011 in Epidemiology and Infection and concluded from epidemiological evidence the outbreak resulted from cross-contamination of restaurant food from food preparation equipment or surfaces, or from an unidentified infected food handler.

Ethan Hutchins of ABC News writes that at first glance Machaela Ybarra is a typical 12-year-old going through the struggles any pre-teen faces. But like the words on the pages of her textbooks, Machaela has a story to tell, a story she only wishes was fiction.

“Whenever I understood what happened to me, I couldn’t believe it,” said Ybarra.

Machaela was just 2 when she contracted E. coli. It happened at Country Cottage restaurant in Locust Grove.

A Sunday afternoon lunch nine years ago changed Machaela’s life forever.

“It sounds scary even though I don’t remember much,” said Ybarra.

Her mother will never forget that day. Christina Ybarra still knows what her daughter ate: Fried chicken, meatloaf, green beans, mashed potatoes and gravy.

“It was a buffet so we went and got one plate, her and I both ate off of it and I didn’t get sick at all,” said Christina Ybarra.

It’s a miracle, she says, since Christina was seven months pregnant at the time with Machaela’s little sister.

Of the hundreds who got sick from E. coli, one person died. The restaurant closed, but was back in business two months later, and now years later Country Cottage remains open. Folks here in town say they still eat here, not blaming the restaurant for those dark days years ago.

No one in Locust Grove at the restaurant or even with the city likes to talk about the outbreak. It’s fair to say, it’s a bad time most people there would like to forget.

But for Machaela, there are daily reminders.

“I’m on seizure medication because I can just stare sometimes and just be unconscious,” said Ybarra.


7 sick: E. coli O111 in apple cider linked to illness in Calif.

I don’t like being the Debbie Downer of food safety, but I also don’t like little kids getting sick when it’s preventable.

powell_kids_ge_sweet_corn_cider_00That’s why me and Chapman always escort our kids on visits to the farm (microbiologically dodgy areas).

California health types have confirmed that apple juice from High Hill Ranch at Apple Hill tested positive for E. coli O111.

Greg Stanton, of the health department, told KCRA 3 the first test result came back and was positive.

The juice from High Hill Ranch was dated Oct. 11, Staton said.

He added that results from two other samples are still pending.

There is a document circulating on social media that appears to show negative lab results for the juice. However, those are not the same results released by the El Dorado County Environmental Health.

KCRA 3 has reached out to High Hill Ranch owner Jerry Visman for an explanation of what the test involved.

The results come less than two weeks after High Hill Ranch announced it was voluntarily recalling its unpasteurized apple juice because of seven cases of E. coli illness among Sacramento County residents.

Health officials said the people consumed the unpasteurized apple juice in mid-October. The juice was consumed at home or at High Hill Ranch. One person was hospitalized and was expected to recover

E. coli O157 found in raw beef liver; Japan contemplates ban

As New York City and food pornographers elsewhere embrace raw meats, one country with a strong culture of raw beef is moving to ban some dishes.

In 2011, E. coli O111 in raw beef killed four and sickened at least 70 in Japan. On Friday, a health ministry panel proposed banning all raw beef liver served at restaurants, after it was discovered that it contains E. coli O157.

Japan Times reports the Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry will swiftly refer the matter to the Food Safety Commission under the Cabinet Office. Once the commission compiles a report, the new ban could be incorporated in the Food Sanitation Law and come into effect as early as June.

Violations regarding raw liver, considered a delicacy, would be punishable by up to two years in prison or a maximum fine of ¥2 million.


Police investigation on E. coli deaths in Japan; still missing the point about risks of raw beef

In another example of Japan’s rapid response to food safety issues, the health ministry says it plans to begin imposing new penalties for food safety violations as early as October … as current guidelines are nonbinding.

The agriculture ministry urged restaurants to ensure the trimming of all raw meat and to remind customers of the higher risks of food poisoning for children and the elderly.

Foods Forus Co., operator of the Yakiniku-zakaya Ebisu restaurant chain — four customers of which died after eating raw beef dishes at its outlets — admitted Tuesday to having taken a lax attitude toward food safety and that it had stopped trimming meat to remove surface bacteria at its restaurants since July 2009, despite being aware of government guidelines to do so.

”We thought the meat had already been trimmed (at Yamatoya Shoten) and that it was alright” to skip the step at the restaurants, a Foods Forus executive told Kyodo News. ”We were careless regarding food safety.”

Police have questioned the president of Tokyo-based meat supplier Yamatoya Shoten and The Yomiuri Shimbun has learned Yamatoya sold meat it claimed was wagyu to Yakiniku-zakaya Ebisu but the meat also contained other kinds of beef.

Wagyu comes from native Japanese breeds of beef cattle, such as Japanese Black, Japanese Brown, Japanese Polled and Japanese Shorthorn, or crosses of such breeds.

However, the ID number of the carcass from which the beef in question was taken showed the animal was raised by a dairy farmer in Fukushima Prefecture.
According to the farmer, "If the meat was sold as wagyu beef, it’s fraudulent labeling."

Yamatoya Shoten removed bones and fat from the meat, divided it into small portions, sterilized it with alcohol and sealed it in vacuum packs, according to the sources. It was then shipped directly to Yakiniku-zakaya Ebisu outlets, they said.

The police said they plan to investigate the processes used in distributing the meat and whether proper hygiene was maintained.

Food safety disasters nothing new in Japan

In June 1996, initial reports of an outbreak of E. coli O157:H7 in Japan surfaced in national media.

By July 1996, focus had centered on specific school cafeterias and two vendors of box lunches, as the number of illnesses approached 4,000. Lunches of sea eel sushi and soup distributed on July 5 from Sakai’s central school lunch depot were identified by health authorities as a possible source of one outbreak. The next day, the number of illnesses had increased to 7,400 even as reports of Japanese fastidiousness intensified. By July 23, 1996, 8,500 were listed as ill.

Even though radish sprouts were ultimately implicated — and then publicly cleared in a fall-on-sword ceremony, but not by the U.S. — the Health and Welfare Ministry announced that Japan’s 333 slaughterhouses must adopt a quality control program modeled on U.S. safety procedures, requiring companies to keep records so the source of any tainted food could be quickly identified. Kunio Morita, chief of the ministry’s veterinary sanitation division was quoted as saying "It’s high time for Japan to follow the international trend in sanitation management standards."

Japanese health authorities were terribly slow to respond to the outbreak of E. coli O157:H7, a standard facilitated by a journalistic culture of aversion rather than adversarial. In all, over 9,500 Japanese, largely schoolchildren, were stricken with E. coli O157:H7 and 12 were killed over the summer of 1996, raising questions of political accountability.

The national Mainichi newspaper demanded in an editorial on July 31, 1996, "Why can’t the government learn from past experience? Why were they slow to react to the outbreak? Why can’t they take broader measures?" The answer, it said, was a "chronic ailment" — the absence of anyone in the government to take charge in a crisis and ensure a coordinated response. An editorial cartoon in the daily Asahi Evening News showed a health worker wearing the label "government emergency response" riding to the rescue on a snail. Some of the victims filed lawsuits against Japanese authorities, a move previously unheard of in the Japanese culture of deference.

Fifteen years later, with at least four dead and 100 sick from E. coli O111 served in raw beef at the Yakiniku-zakaya Ebisu barbecue restaurant chain, Japanese corporate, political and media leaders are still struggling.

Under Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry guidelines, only meat that meets strict standards–such as being processed on equipment exclusively for handling meat for raw consumption and in a meticulously hygienic environment–can be shipped to be eaten raw.

However, the decision on what meat can be served raw is left up to the restaurant serving it. The wholesaler who sold the beef in question to the Yakiniku-zakaya Ebisu chain reportedly told a public health center that the meat it shipped "was supposed to be eaten after being cooked."

The sanitation guidelines have no binding power and have largely been ignored. The health ministry, for its part, has long failed to stringently push industries to comply with the sanitation standards.

To ensure people can eat raw meat without fearing for their health, the government must review the regulations for the entire meat preparation process.

Anrakutei Co., a Saitama-based yakiniku barbecue chain, stopped serving yukke at its 250 outlets, mainly in the Kanto region, on Tuesday.

"We’ve been providing the dish to customers based on strict quality control, but customers’ concerns make it difficult to continue to serve it," a public relations official of the company said.

Anrakutei said the company conducts bacteria tests on the Australian beef it uses for yukke three times–first before it is purchased, again before it is sent to the company’s meat processing plant and finally before it is shipped to outlets. At the plant, the meat is processed separately from other food materials to prevent it from coming into contact with bacteria, the company explained.

There is no discussion of what is being tested, and how valid those tests are at picking up a non-O157 shiga-toxin producing E. coli like O111 There is no verification that anyone is testing anything.

In the absence of meat goggles that can magically detect dangerous bacteria, eating raw hamburger remains a risk.

E. coli O111 can kill

Reporter Julie Schmit says in today’s USA Today that 20-month-old Braylee Beaver, was one of 314 people sickened in August by E. coli O111 in Locust Grove, Oklahoma. A 26-year-old died in the outbreak.

Braylee’s father, Jake Beaver, said after her 12-day hospital stay (family hoto from USA Today, right),

"I didn’t know E. coli could do this. I just thought people got a little sick."

Dana and Rick Boner of Monroe, Iowa, also thought their daughter, Kayla, had a regular bug last year when she fell ill on her 14th birthday. Kayla died 11 days later because of an E. coli O111 infection — the cause of which was never determined — her mother says.

"I didn’t even know there were any other strains but O157. … I want people to know there are other strains. How could my child be the only person who got this?"

From 1990 to 2007, O111 was linked to 10 reported illness outbreaks in the U.S., the CDC says. Four of the 10 were linked to food. Before the Oklahoma outbreak, in which one person died, the biggest O111 outbreak happened in New York in 2004. Unpasteurized apple cider was blamed for 212 illnesses.

E. coli O111 is a Shiga toxin-producing E. coli, or STEC. It is one of a handful of non-O157 STECs that have caused 22 reported illness outbreaks in the U.S. from 1990 to 2007, the CDC says. Food caused 10 of the outbreaks. …

The CDC estimates that more than 25,000 non-O157 STEC infections occur each year in the U.S. — about a third the number of O157:H7 infections.

In 1995, E. coli O111 sickened 173 people and killed a four-year-old girl in Australia, after eating contaminated mettwurst, an uncooked, semi-dry fermented sausage.