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Entries in Food Safety (65)

Wednesday
Feb032016

CEI Today: Chipotle's problem, Operation Choke Point, abusive lawsuits, and more 

 

Wednesday, February 3, 2016
In the News Today

CHIPOTLE'S MARKETING HYPE - FRED L. SMITH, JR.


The Chipotle Effect: When Companies Believe Their Own Hype


It's about what happens when corporate marketing becomes more important that the product itself, and it can only be fixed by understanding what a company like Chipotle exists to accomplish in the first place. > Read more 

OPERATION CHOKE POINT

Bill Aims to Stop Operation Choke Point Happening Again


Choke Point is an attempt to use federal supervisory powers to intimidate providers of financial services to businesses that are deemed unacceptable by bureaucrats, even though they are perfectly legal. Rep. Leutkemeyer has introduced a bill to prevent federal banking agencies from using the tactics involved. > Read more

> Interview Iain Murray

ABUSIVE LAWSUITS - RYAN RADIA

CEI Joins Coalition Supporting Bill to Curb Abusive Lawsuits Targeting Free Speech


The SPEAK FREE Act would curtail frivolous lawsuits brought to chill protected speech and stifle criticism about matters of public concern. These lawsuits, known as “strategic lawsuits against public participation”—or SLAPPs—are brought by plaintiffs to punish speakers they dislike, even though the speech is protected by the First Amendment. > Read more

> Interview Ryan Radia

RIGHT TO WORK VOTE - IVAN OSORIO

West Virginia: Prospect for a Right to Work Majority


West Virginia may soon become the nation’s 26th right to work state—making the number of right to work states a majority for the first time. For workers, it will mean greater protection of their First Amendment rights of freedom of speech and association.> Read more


> Interview Ivan Osorio

 

    

 

CEI is a non-profit, non-partisan public policy group dedicated to the principles of free enterprise and limited government.  For more information about CEI, please visit our website, cei.org.  Follow CEI on Twitter! Twitter.com/ceidotorg.

 

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Tuesday
Nov242015

NH DHHS - Holiday Food Safety 

Food Safety Tips for the Holiday Season



Concord, NH – As we enter the busy holiday season, the Department of Health

and Human Services’ (DHHS) Food Protection Section is promoting important

food safety practices by encouraging residents to follow some simple tips

to avoid foodborne illnesses, such as Salmonella, E. coli, and

Campylobacter.



“Don’t let germs ruin your holiday activities by not taking proper

precautions against foodborne disease,” said Marcella Bobinsky, Acting

Director of the Division of Public Health Services at DHHS. “There are

simple tips for safe food preparation that we should all be following every

day, not just at holidays. Sometimes at large family gatherings our

attention may not be focused as closely on safe food handling and this can

present an opportunity for bacteria to be introduced.”



According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there

are 31 pathogens known to cause foodborne illness. Every year there are an

estimated 48 million cases of illness, 128,000 hospitalizations, and 3,000

deaths in the United States due to foodborne diseases. Symptoms can vary

depending on the illness, but some common symptoms are diarrhea, abdominal

cramps, and nausea. It is difficult to say with certainty which microbe is

causing a given illness without laboratory testing.



The following simple precautions should always be followed by cooks and

food service workers to reduce the possibility of anyone becoming sick:





Separate: Use a separate cutting board for cooked foods and raw foods

and always wash them after use. Do not cut raw vegetables on the same

cutting board as raw meat. Avoid cross contamination. Wash any

utensil after preparing one food item before going on to the next

item.





Clean: Always wash hands before touching any food. Wash hands and

surfaces often during food preparation and afterward.





Cook: Make sure all meats are thoroughly cooked by using a meat

thermometer: turkey, stuffing, and casseroles to 165ºF; veal, beef,

and lamb roasts to 145ºF; and ham, pork, ground beef, and egg dishes

to 160ºF. When reheating, leftovers should be thoroughly heated to

165ºF.





Chill: Refrigerate or freeze leftovers within two hours. The

refrigerator should be maintained at 40ºF or lower and the freezer

should be at 0ºF or lower. Keep hot foods hot, 140ºF or hotter, and

cold foods cold, 40ºF or below. Never defrost food at room

temperature. Thaw food in the refrigerator, in a cold-water bath, or

in the microwave. When using a microwave, meat must be cooked

immediately after. Marinate foods in the refrigerator.





Report: Report suspected foodborne illnesses to the NH Department of

Health and Human Services by calling 603-271-4496. Often calls from

concerned citizens are how outbreaks are first detected. If a public

health official calls you to talk about an outbreak your cooperation

is important, even if you are not ill.





For more information, visit www.dhhs.nh.gov , www.usda.gov,  www.cdc.gov , or

http://www.fightbac.org/. To report a foodborne outbreak, call the DHHS

Division of Public Health Services at 603-271-4496.

Thursday
Jul022015

NH DHHS - Food Safety Tips for the Summer Season 

Concord, NH – During this busy summer season of trips to the beach,

vacations, and cookouts, the Department of Health and Human

Services’ (DHHS) Food Protection Section wants to remind everyone to follow

some important food safety practices to avoid foodborne illnesses, such as

Salmonella, Shigella, E. coli, and Campylobacter.



There are an estimated 48 million cases of foodborne disease each year, but

there is no way to know for sure since many foodborne illnesses are never

reported and not everyone even goes to see their healthcare provider.

However, in 2013, there were 19,056 confirmed cases of foodborne illness

resulting in 4,200 hospitalizations and 80 deaths according to U.S. Centers

for Disease Control and Prevention data.



“Food is an important part of vacation and holiday gatherings but it needs

to be handled safely, especially during the warmer weather,” said Marcella

Bobinsky, Acting Director of Public Health at DHHS. “The basic rule is to

keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold. Just like hand washing, the more we

practice it the more routine it becomes and the safer we all will be.”



A DHHS video on summer grilling food safety is available on YouTube at

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TWDyMOUTrfM. There are some simple

precautions everyone should always take to reduce the possibility of

becoming sick when preparing food, which include:

· Separate: Avoid cross contamination. Use a separate cutting board for

cooked foods and raw foods (especially meat) and always wash them

after use. Wash any utensil after preparing one food item before

going on to the next item.

· Clean: Always wash hands before touching any food. Wash hands and

surfaces often during food preparation and afterward.

· Cook: Pork, lamb, veal, and whole cuts of beef should be cooked to

145 °F as measured by a food thermometer placed in the thickest part

of the meat, followed by a three-minute rest time before carving or

consuming. Hamburgers and other ground beef should reach 160 °F. All

poultry should reach a minimum temperature of 165 °F. Fish should be

cooked to 145 °F. Fully cooked meats like hot dogs should be grilled

to 165 °F or until steaming hot.

· Chill: Refrigerate or freeze leftovers within two hours. One hour if

it is a hot day over

90ºF. The refrigerator should be maintained at 40ºF or lower and the

freezer should be at 0ºF or lower. Keep hot foods hot, 140ºF or

hotter, and cold foods cold, 40ºF or below. Never defrost food at

room temperature. Thaw food in the refrigerator, in a cold-water

bath, or in the microwave. When using a microwave, meat must be

cooked immediately after. Marinate foods in the refrigerator.

· Report: Report suspected foodborne illnesses to the NH Department of

Health and Human Services by calling 603-271-4496. Often calls from

concerned citizens are how outbreaks are first detected. If a public

health official calls you to talk about an outbreak, your cooperation

is important, even if you are not ill.



For more information, visit the U.S. Department of Agriculture at

www.usda.gov  or

http://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsis/topics/food-safety-education/teach-others/fsis-educational-campaigns/grill-it-safe/grill-it-safe

, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) at www.cdc.gov , the

DHHS website at www.dhhs.nh.gov , or www.befoodsafe.org .

Tuesday
Jan272015

NH DHHS Provides Recommendations on Food Safety After Power Outage

Concord, NH - The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services

(DHHS) is releasing the following food safety recommendations for retail

establishments and residents who may lose power or be affected by flooding

as a result of the impending blizzard.



For residential homes:

DHHS recommends taking the following steps during and after a loss of

electrical power:

· Never taste food to determine its safety

· Keep the refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible to

maintain the cold temperature

· The refrigerator will keep food safely cold for about 4 hours if it

is unopened. A full freezer will hold the temperature approximately

48 hours (24 hours if its half full and the door remains closed)

· Food can be safely refrozen if it still contains ice crystals or is

at 40ºF or below

· Get block ice or dry ice to keep your refrigerator and freezer as

cold as possible if the power is going to be out for an extended

period of time

· Discard refrigerated perishable food such as meat, poultry, fish,

soft cheeses, milk, eggs, leftovers, and deli items after 4 hours

without power

· When in doubt, throw it out.



For retail establishments:

Retail establishments are reminded that they should cease operation and

contact the Food Protection Section when they have experienced any of the

following:

· disruption of water service or interruption of electrical service for

longer than 2 hours,

· have a contaminated water supply or failed sewer system



The Food Protection Section will approve the resumption of operations when

an imminent health hazard no longer exists or when the establishment has

offered a plan to mitigate all threats to health and safety after a power

outage.



Retail establishments with questions about safe food handling during a

power outage should visit the DHHS website at

http://www.dhhs.state.nh.us/dphs/fp/documents/emergency.pdf for a copy of

the Emergency Action Plan for Retail Establishments. Consumers or

establishments can reach the DPHS Food Protection Section at 603-271-4589

or after business hours at 271-5300; or by email at

foodprotection@dhhs.state.nh.us.

# #

Sunday
Nov232014

NH DHHS - Four New Hampshire SalmonellaCases Identified

Part of Multistate Outbreak Linked to Bean Sprouts

Concord, NH – Four people in New Hampshire, so far, have been identified by

the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services, Division of

Public Health Services (DPHS) as being linked to a multistate outbreak

involving bean sprouts consumption in restaurants. As of November 21, 2014,

a total of 63 people have been infected with Salmonella Enteriditis in 10

states. Traceback from all of the establishments indicated that all

received bean sprouts from Wonton Foods, Inc. of Brooklyn, New York.



The firm is cooperating with public health and agriculture officials and

has reported that their last shipment of bean sprouts was on November 18,

2014. As of November 21, 2014, the firm has verbally agreed to voluntarily

stop the production and sale of their bean sprouts while they take steps to

prevent Salmonella contamination. The other states reporting cases include

Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, Montana, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania,

Rhode Island, and Vermont. Illness onset dates range from September 30th to

November 8th. So far 11 people have been hospitalized, none in New

Hampshire, and no deaths have been reported.



The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state and local

public health partners are continuing laboratory surveillance to identify

additional ill persons and to interview them about foods they ate before

they became ill. This ongoing investigation is rapidly evolving, and CDC

and DPHS will update the public when additional information is available.



“The Division of Public Health Services will continue to investigate to

identify any other potential cases and has notified the New Hampshire

Grocers Association and the New Hampshire Restaurant and Lodging

Association so that the product is removed from consumption” said Dr. José

Montero, Director of Public Health at DPHS. “Sprouts are a known source of

foodborne illness, so if you are not sure of the origin of any sprouts, it

is best to throw them out rather than risk consuming a contaminated

product.”





The CDC is recommending that restaurants and other retailers do not sell or

serve sprouts produced by Wonton Foods, Inc. at this time. Consumers are

encouraged to cook any sprouts and children, older adults, pregnant women,

and persons with weakened immune systems should always avoid eating raw

sprouts of any kind due to their increased risk of illness from Salmonella.





Salmonella causes diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps usually 12 to 72

hours after infection. The illness usually lasts 4 to 7 days, and most

people recover without treatment. However, in some cases, the diarrhea may

be so severe that the patient needs to be hospitalized. In these patients,

the Salmonella infection may spread from the intestines to the blood

stream, and then to other body sites and can cause death unless the patient

is treated promptly with antibiotics.





The DHHS Division of Public Health Services continues to follow this

outbreak closely, including investigation of any reported cases in close

coordination with the CDC and the FDA, and will provide updates as they

become available. For further information visit the CDC website at

http://www.cdc.gov/salmonella/enteritidis-11-14/index.html, or to report a

suspected case contact the DPHS Bureau of Infectious Disease Control at

603-271-4496.