Ohio E. coli outbreak toll rises to 75; 14 hospitalized, 3 HUS

The E. coli O157 outbreak associated with a picnic in Germantown, Ohio has now sickened at least 75 people with 14 in hospital.

A 4-year old female, a 14-year old male, and a 73-year old male have developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) and are in serious medical condition.

Estimates are that as many as 300 people may have attended an annual customer appreciation picnic held by Neff’s Lawn Care, 9400 Ekhart Road, on July 3. Of the ill, 18 have been confirmed as being infected by E. coli O157.

Public Health – Dayton & Montgomery County officials are asking anyone who got sick after attending the picnic to call (937) 225-4460 to report their illness.

Ohio E. coli outbreak toll rises to 55; 10 hospitalized

The E. coli O157 outbreak associated with a picnic in Germantown, Ohio has now sickened at least 55 people with 10 in hospital.

Public Health – Dayton & Montgomery County officials are asking anyone who got sick after attending the picnic to call (937) 225-4460 to report their illness.

Public health officials have confirmed that five of the people taken ill are infected with E. coli O157.

When picnics go bad; 36 sick, 9 hospitalized in Ohio E. coli O157 outbreak

Neff’s Lawn Care seems like a decent enough company.

But when they decided to thank a couple of hundred customers with a picnic in Germantown, Ohio, things went bad.

Health types in Dayton & Montgomery County say that food served at the picnic led to at least 36 individuals have become ill; of those, nine have been hospitalized. Of the ill, 5 have been confirmed to be infected by E. coli O157.

Milking cows on the Sydney Habour bridge

The bridge over Sydney Harbour connecting Sydney with the business area of north Sydney is an engineering marvel.

Ben, Dani and I walked it one night after too much fine wine with some Australian colleagues. I’ve jogged across it many times. And walked, like in this pic from 2004 (right).

But I haven’t seen any cows.

On Sunday, for the first time since the 1930s when farmers paid tuppence to move their stock across the span, dairy cows, along with about 6000 people are expected to attend a picnic on the coathanger as part of the Breakfast on the Bridge event, the centrepiece of the Crave Sydney festival.

To help the cows acclimatise, a hectare of Kikuyu turf from Pitt Town in Sydney’s far north-west will be transported to the heart of the city and laid over the tarmac.

Danielle Krix, the farm manager at Hurlstone Agricultural School, said,

”For some people that come from the city, it’s going to be an eye-opener that milk comes out of an actual cow and not a carton.”

Evergreen Turf is the company responsible for trucking in the turf to cover the bridge roadway and its chief executive, Dean Holden, said it would take about eight semi-trailers to transport it and three hours to lay it.

”Three o’clock in the morning is always fun to be doing a bit of work … but while looking over Sydney Harbour it will be a magnificent experience.”

There will be a cow milking display for the ticket holders.

Breakfast on the Bridge will run for two hours from 6.30am, with the bridge closed on Sunday from 1am to 1pm.

Mayonnaise makes food safer

The New York Times reports that, despite its reputation, mayonnaise can reduce food spoilage.

Most commercial brands of mayonnaise contain vinegar and other ingredients that make them acidic — and therefore very likely to protect against spoilage.
When problems occur, they usually result from other contaminated or low-acid ingredients (like chicken and seafood), improper storage and handling, or homemade versions that contain unpasteurized eggs.

One prominent study published in The Journal of Food Protection found, for example, that in the presence of commercial mayonnaise, the growth of salmonella and staphylococcus bacteria in contaminated chicken and ham salad either slowed or stopped altogether. As the amount of mayonnaise increased, the rate of growth decreased. When temperatures rose to those of a hot summer day, the growth increased, but not as much as in samples that did not contain mayonnaise.

Or, as Bill Marler quipped, for his summer picnic, “I’ll just have the bun please.

iFSN interviews anti-GMO types at the Biojustice 2002 rally in Toronto

I’d say anti-GE, as in genetic engineering, cause I’m always careful to use the correct terminology, but youtube culture would think I’m talking about appliances, not food.

Back in the day when genetic engineering of food was on the front lines in Canada, my lab shot a lot of video. We just didn’t know what to do with it.

Then youtube came along.

So I’ll be posting a bunch of our old videos, and you can all judge for yourselves how evil, boring or indifferent we all were.

And make fun of our hairstyles.

First up: iFSN students Ben and Christian go hang out at the 2002 Biojustice picnic, more formally known as, The 6th International Grassroots Gathering on Genetic Engineering June 7-9, 2002, Toronto, Canada, which was held at the same time as the annual meeting of the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) annual meeting in Toronto, 2002.

The video editing was all Christian; he was good …