Food Poisoning

On July 27, New York State Agriculture Commissioner Darrel J. Aubertine warned consumers in the Metropolitan New York area not to consume “Quesito Colombiano, Colombian style Cheese” made by Productos Tita Corp (70-06 88th Street, Glendale, New York 11385) due to possible Staphylococcus aureus contamination. The recalled Colombian style cheese under the brand name “Tita” is contained in 8oz.

July 25, 2012  Gills Onions has extended an earlier voluntary recall on diced, slivered and whole peeled onions and diced onion/celery mix with use-by-dates on or before August 3, 2012.  The FDA recently conducted investigations in the Gills Onion Facility where they identified Listeria.  The recalled products were shipped to retailers in Canada, and the following states: Arizona, California, Colorado, Illinois, Montana, New York, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Utah and

July 24, 2012 Sartori Inspirations, manufacturer of the Ciolo and Piccolo line of artisanal pesto, dips, tapenades and spreads, initiated a recall on items containing onions from Gills Onions, which may be contaminated by Listeria.  The items potentially affected are sold at Whole Food Markets located in CO, TX, CT, WA, and MD.  Items containing Gills Onion recall were recalled when the company was notified by the FDA that a randomly selected diced onion tested positive for Listeria

On July 10, Hannaford Supermarkets in Scarborough, Maine alerted customers to a recall issued by New Jersey-based Buona Vita Inc. of three meatball products, due to possible contamination with Listeria monocytogenes, the causative agent of listeriosis. Responsible for approximately 2,500 illnesses and 500 deaths in the U.S. annually, listeriosis is the leading cause of death among foodborne bacterial pathogens. The FDA posted this recall notice on July 16.

According to a press release issued on May 18, River Ranch Fresh Foods, LLC of Salinas, California is initiating a voluntary recall of retail and foodservice bagged salads. The packaged vegetables were found to have the potential of being contaminated by Listeria monocytogenes following a series of routine, random marketplace tests conducted by the Food & Drug Administration.

Food poisoning traced to New York’s Putnam County Buddhist temple celebrating Mother’s Day struck at least 150 people last Sunday, including 20 visitors from New York’s Chinatown on a trip to Woodbury Common. Eric Gross, spokesman for the Putnam County Bureau of Emergency Services, said the incident started at a Buddhist Day Garden Party at the Chuang-yen Temple in the town of Kent, where at least 700 people attended.

Food Poisoning Statistics In 2011, the FDA inspected only about 1,000 of more than 250,000 foreign, non-meat food producers. Between 2005 and 1010, 39 food poisoning outbreaks occurred, compared to 19 outbreaks between 1998 and 2004. In short, the FDA is underfunded, it doesn’t inspect enough, and the problem is getting worse, not better. Food Poisoning from Imported Foods

Listeria Contamination Suspected We’ve written quite a bit about Listeria outbreaks lately, and we’re sorry to report yet another round of food recalls. This time, it’s Mexican queso products coming from El Ranchero Del Sur, LLC. from South River, New Jersey. The recalled cheeses are El Ranchero Queso Fresco 14 oz. (Fresh Cheese); Los Corrales Queso Fresco en Hoja De Platano 14 oz. (Fresh Cheese In Banana Leaf); and El Ranchero Queso Oaxaca 14 oz. and 10 lb.

Food Industry Protests Food Safety Plan Obama Signs Sweeping Food Safety Reform Bill. According to Bloomberg News, an Obama administration plan to prevent food contamination is being opposed by a coalition of 33 food industry groups representing frozen foods, meat, dairy, fresh produce and others. In a letter sent by the alliance of food producers, they warn that the $220 million plan would result in higher food prices for consumers.

Zip International Group Recalls Herring from Ukraine Listeria is in the news once again, this time in sliced herring fillets packaged in plastic. The products, sold in New York State, tested positive for Listeria monocytogenes during routine checks by New York State food inspectors. For full details, click here.