Food Poisoning

According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Fairway market is recalling its brand Raw Hazelnuts (Filberts) due to possible contamination with Salmonella.

Salmonella can cause serious and even fatal infections in young children, elderly or others with weakened immune systems. Healthy individuals infected with the bacteria can experience fever, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. 

Each year, contaminated food sickens 48 million Americans. 28,000 of those are hospitalized, and 3,000 die as a result. The pathogen Salmonella is both common and potentially lethal. It infects more than a million Americans each year, sending 19,000 victims to the hospital, and killing more people than any other food-born pathogen.

On March 13, 2014 Dole Fresh Vegetables announced that they are voluntarily recalling a limited number of cases of bagged salad. The products being recalled are Dole Italian Blend (UPC 7143000819), Fresh Selections Italian Style Blend (UPC 1111091045), Little Salad Bar Italian Salad (UPC 4149811014) and Marketside Italian Style Salad (UPC 8113102780) coded A058201A or B, with Use-by date of March 12, 2014 due to a possible health risk from Listeria monocytogenes.

The Food and Drug Administration has proposed a new rule that would require food importers such as Walmart and Cargill to ensure that their foreign manufacturers follow American food safety standards in an effort to prevent contamination and illness. Shockingly, about 15% of the food that we as Americans consume comes from overseas, including over 60% of our fruits and vegetables. Currently the F.D.A inspects less than 2% of all imported foods.

The source of the widespread stomach bug outbreak has been tracked in at least two states to a Mexican farm that supplied salad mix to Olive Garden and Red Lobster restaurants. On Sunday, the FDA announced that the illnesses in Nebraska and Iowa have been traced to Taylor Farms in Salinas, California. The FDA is still trying to determine if the prepackaged salad mix was the source of infections in the other states.

When we purchase a bag of “pre-washed” lettuce, we expect it to be pre-washed and have no trace of parasites. However, a recent report has been released stating that nearly 400 people have been sickened due to packaged salad mixes. What’s even more alarming is the fact that state and federal officials are refusing to identify the brand or producer of the prepackaged salad mix that is being blamed for these illnesses.

According to the FDA on July 5, 2013, Whole Foods Market announced that it is recalling Crave Brothers Les Frères cheese in response to a recall by the Crave Brothers Farmstead Cheese Company of Waterloo, Wisconsin. The cheese is being recalled because it has the potential to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes, an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems.

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