EdNet - August 2012
EdNet, the National Food Safety Educator’s Network, is a monthly, multi-agency electronic news journal from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). EdNet provides up-to-date information about food safety and nutrition programs and activities for educators, consumer advocates, government officials, and industry representatives.
If you have questions or comments about this issue of EdNet, send e-mail to the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (FDA).
In this issue:
Advisories, Alerts, and Warnings
- FDA Announces Recall of Cantaloupe by Chamberlain Farms of Owensville, IN
- USDA Offers Food Safety Preparation Tips as Tropical Storm Isaac Nears Florida
- Tanimura & Antle Voluntarily Recalls Single Lot of Romaine Lettuce Because of Possible Health Risk
- Investigation of Multistate Outbreak of Salmonella Typhimurium Infections Potentially Related to Cantaloupe Grown in Southwest Indiana
Resources for Educators
- Agriculture Secretary Vilsack Announces Meat Purchase to Assist Livestock Producers Impacted by Drought; Bolster Federal Nutrition Programs
- Agriculture Deputy Secretary Merrigan Announces New Opportunities for Small Meat and Poultry Processors
- Food Safety Guides for Groups Most Vulnerable to Foodborne Illness Now Available
- FDA’s CFSAN Education Resource Library
- Update from APHIS Regarding Release of the Final Report on the BSE Epidemiological Investigation
- New Resource to Help Protect Consumers from Pathogen Risks in Food and Water
- New Podcasts
- The New FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA)
- FDA: U.S. Marshals Seize Food Products at Fremont, CA, Warehouse
- USDA Suspends Central Valley Meat for Humane Handling Violations
- FDA Issues Final Guidance on Production, Storage and Transportation of Shell Eggs
- 2012 Annual Report on Food Facilities, Food Imports, and FDA Foreign Offices
- FDA Announces Draft Guidance on Food Categories in Food Facility Registrations
- FDA’s CORE Network Completes an Action-Packed First Year
- Food Safety Modernization Act Domestic and Foreign Facility Reinspection, Recall, and Importer Reinspection Fee Rates for Fiscal Year 2013
- Updates on FSIS Testing for E. coli
- FSIS Policy Updates
The FDA is announcing a recall of cantaloupe by Chamberlain Farms, of Owensville, IN, because of possible contamination with Salmonella Typhimurium associated with a multi-state outbreak of salmonellosis. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports a total of 178 persons infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Typhimurium from 21 states. Nationwide, 62 persons have been hospitalized. In Kentucky, two deaths have been reported. The investigation into this outbreak continues, in order to determine whether there are other possible sources of the outbreak.
More information about the recall can be found at: http://www.fda.gov/NewsEvents/Newsroom/PressAnnouncements/ucm316665.htm
On August 24, 2012, USDA's FSIS issued a news release as tropical storm Isaac nears Florida, urging consumers to make food safety a part of their storm preparation efforts. Power outages and flooding that often result from weather emergencies compromise the safety of stored food, and planning ahead can minimize the risk of foodborne illness.
Read this news release:
On August 19, 2012, Tanimura & Antle Inc. voluntarily recalled a single lot of romaine lettuce because it may be contaminated with Escherichia coli O157:H7 bacteria (E. Coli O157:H7). The affected product is limited to Tanimura & Antle Field Fresh Wrapped Single Head Romaine. This product is packed in a plastic bag with the UPC number 0-27918-20314-9 and may have a Best Buy date of 08 19 12. The product was available at retail locations August 2 – 9, 2012. NO OTHER TANIMURA & ANTLE PRODUCTS ARE BEING RECALLED. A total of 2,095 cases of potentially affected product were distributed throughout the U.S. and Canada starting on August 2, 2012. The recall is being conducted in consultation with FDA, and is based on the testing of a single random sample by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.
Read this News Release:
Investigation of Multistate Outbreak of Salmonella Typhimurium Infections Potentially Related to Cantaloupe Grown in Southwest Indiana
The FDA along with the CDC, state and local officials are investigating a multi-state outbreak of Salmonella Typhimurium infections. The investigation is in the early stages. We are moving quickly to learn as much as possible and prevent additional people from becoming ill. We recognize that people will be concerned about this outbreak, and we will continue to provide updates and advice. A total of 141 persons infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Typhimurium have been reported from 20 states.
See more detailed information, updates, and advice about the investigation of a multi-state outbreak of Salmonella Typhimurium infections:
Agriculture Secretary Vilsack Announces Meat Purchase to Assist Livestock Producers Impacted by Drought; Bolster Federal Nutrition Programs
On August 13, 2012, as part of the Obama Administration's commitment to do everything it can to help farmers, ranchers, small businesses, and communities being impacted by the nation's persistent drought, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced USDA's intent to purchase up to $170 million of pork, lamb, chicken, and catfish for federal food nutrition assistance programs, including food banks.
Read this news release:
Agriculture Deputy Secretary Merrigan Announces New Opportunities for Small Meat and Poultry Processors
On August 9, 2012, Agriculture Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan announced that Ohio will be the first state to participate in USDA's Cooperative Interstate Shipment Program. Under this program, Ohio's small, state-inspected meat processors will be able to ship their products across state lines. The cooperative interstate shipment program will expand economic opportunities for America's small meat and poultry processors, strengthen state and local economies, and increase consumer access to safe, locally-produced food.
Read the press release:
On August 1, 2012, FSIS issued a news release to announce the agency has partnered with the FDA to create six booklets with food safety advice for populations that are most susceptible to foodborne illness. The booklets in this at-risk series are tailored to help older adults, transplant recipients, pregnant women, and people with cancer, diabetes or HIV/AIDS reduce their risk for foodborne illness.
Read this news release:
The Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN) Education Resource Library is a compilation of printable educational materials on topics related to food safety, nutrition (including labeling and dietary supplements) and cosmetics. These materials are intended for educators, teachers, dietitians and health professionals as well as for general consumer education. Materials are available in PDF format for immediate download and may also be ordered in larger quantities using the CFSAN's Consumer Related Resources Order Form.
See the full spectrum of CFSAN’s information on various topics:
USDA has released its final report on the epidemiological investigation of a dairy cow from California that tested positive for bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in April 2012. This epidemiological report is the result of months of close coordination with the FDA, the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA), local officials, and the associated dairy and rendering facility.
Read this news release:
On July 31, 2012, FSIS and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) unveiled a new tool that will help scientists improve the quality of data collected and used to protect consumers from pathogen-related risks in food and water. The tool, a Microbial Risk Assessment (MRA) Guideline, was jointly developed with EPA as a public health collaborative project.
Read this news release:
Tune in to podcasts and listen to food safety specialists providing consumers with advice and up to date information on how to prevent foodborne illness through the safe handling, preparation and storage of meat, poultry, and processed egg products. FSIS has released the following new podcast:
Check out these podcasts: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/news_&_events/Food_Safety_at_Home_Podcasts/ (English)
Videos in American Sign Language: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/news_&_events/SignFSIS/index.asp
Visit FSIS’ Food Safety Channel on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/USDAFoodSafety
For other food safety podcasts: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/news_&_events/Podcasts/index.asp
The FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), the most sweeping reform of our food safety laws in more than 70 years, was signed into law by President Obama on January 4, 2011. It aims to ensure the U.S. food supply is safe by shifting the focus from responding to contamination to preventing it.
Get FSMA updates at:
U.S. Marshals have seized food products stored in a Fremont, CA, company’s warehouse after inspectors from the FDA found widespread and active rodent infestation. The FDA initiated the seizure of various food products in the warehouse owned by the San Francisco Herb & Natural Food Company on August 21, 2012, under a warrant issued by the U.S. District Court for Northern of California. FDA inspectors found significant insanitary conditions throughout the warehouse during a recent inspection, in violation of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act. These conditions included the presence of live and dead rodents in and around food products, and apparent rodent nesting materials in food.
Read this news release:
On August 21, 2012, the USDA issued a news release to announce that it continues to take aggressive action to investigate and respond to disturbing evidence of inhumane treatment of cattle at Central Valley Meat in Hanford, CA. Central Valley Meat was notified by USDA's FSIS that the agency was immediately suspending the assignment of inspectors at the establishment on August 19, 2012, effectively halting slaughter operations at the establishment.
Read this news release:
On August 20, 2012, the FDA announced the availability of a final Guidance for Industry on the production, storage and transportation of shell eggs under the Egg Safety Rule. The guidance is in response to questions the FDA received about the Egg Safety Rule, which published in July 2009 and is designed to prevent Salmonella Enteritidis (SE) in shell eggs. The guidance document addresses questions regarding the requirements under the rule, including how to determine whether and when producers must comply with the requirements, SE prevention measures, sampling and testing requirements, facility registration, and enforcement and compliance.
Read this constituent update at:
2012 Annual Report on Food Facilities, Food Imports, and FDA Foreign Offices
The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) requires many deliverables from FDA, among them special reports and studies to be submitted to Congress. This second Annual Report on Food Facilities, Food Imports, and FDA Foreign Offices was submitted to Congress by HHS Secretary Sebelius in August 2012, in response to Section 201 (b) of the Act. The report briefly describes the scope of FDA’s responsibility and its activities in protecting the U.S. food supply under its jurisdiction. It also discusses how federal, state and local agencies cooperate with FDA in that effort. Baseline data are provided on the cost and number of domestic and foreign food facility inspections; the numbers of field samples analyzed to support FDA’s compliance actions; and FDA’s foreign posts and their staff who extend the international impact of FDA.
See detailed information about this annual report submitted to Congress:
On August 14, 2012, the FDA issued draft guidance on the Necessity of the Use of Food Categories in Food Facility Registrations and Updates to Food Categories, as provided by section 102 of the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). FSMA amended section 415 of the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act, which requires both domestic and foreign facilities that manufacture, process, pack or hold food for human or animal consumption in the U.S. to register with the FDA. Requiring the submission of food product category information as part of a facility's registration is necessary to allow for a quick, accurate, and focused response to an actual or potential bioterrorist incident or other food-related emergency.
Read about how the draft guidance updates the previously issued Guidance for Industry: Necessity of the Use of Food Product Categories in Registration of Food Facilities:
August 2012 marks the first anniversary of the launching of the Coordinated Outbreak Response and Evaluation (CORE) Network. To observe the occasion, the FDA is issuing a series of four Consumer Updates describing its work to investigate, control and prevent outbreaks of foodborne illnesses. The series will provide consumers with an overview of the CORE Network and introduce the three CORE teams: Signals and Surveillance, Response, and Post-Response.
Additional information on the CORE Network and the Consumer Updates series, including an interview with Kathleen Gensheimer, M.D., M.P.H., chief medical officer and director of outbreak investigation and response, on how CORE uses teamwork to respond to outbreaks are available at FDA.gov.
Read more of this Constituent Update at: http://www.fda.gov/Food/NewsEvents/ConstituentUpdates/ucm314460.htm
For more information read FDA’s Consumer Update, Signals and Surveillance: The Detectors:
Post-Response: Preventing Outbreaks
Food Safety Modernization Act Domestic and Foreign Facility Reinspection, Recall, and Importer Reinspection Fee Rates for Fiscal Year 2013
The FDA is announcing the fiscal year (FY) 2013 fee rates for certain domestic and foreign facility reinspections, failures to comply with a recall order, and importer reinspections that are authorized by the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (the FD&C Act), as amended by the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). These fees are effective on October 1, 2012, and will remain in effect through September 30, 2013.
To read this announcement, go to:
View Notice, Request for Comments, Docket Number: FDA-2012-N-0799, contact information and more:
Updates on FSIS Testing for E. coli
FSIS posts bi-weekly updates for the agency's raw ground beef E. coli sampling program. Included are testing results of raw ground beef component samples for E. coli O157:H7 and STECs from FSIS routine and follow-up sampling programs. Also featured is data for non-O157 STECs by each non-O157 STEC serogroup.
To review testing results, go to:
FSIS Policy Updates
FSIS issues Notices and Directives to protect public health. The following policy updates were recently issued:
- FSIS Notice 50-12: Inspection Responsibilities and Authorities for Reducing Slaughter or Evisceration Line Speed
- FSIS Directive 5000.6: Performance of the Hazard Analysis Verification (HAV) Task
- FSIS Notice 47-12: Instructions for Modified Sample Size for National Residue Program Scheduled Muscle Samples
- Docket No. FSIS 2012-0023: Availability of Microbial Risk Assessment Guideline: Pathogenic Microorganisms With Focus on Food and in Water
All Notices and Directives are available at: