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Archive for the ‘Food Regulations’ Category

Global Health Alert – Botulism: Infant Formula, Sports Drinks at Risk

Posted by feww on August 3, 2013

Botulism bacteria found in Fonterra Infant formula

Fonterra, New Zealand dairy Goliath, has announced that some of its ingredients used in infant formula and sports drinks have tested positive for a type of bacteria that could cause the potentially fatal illness botulism.

Countries most at risk could include China, South Korea, UK, France, United States, Japan, Australia and Canada, according to informed sources.

Fonterra identified a potential quality problem in March when a product tested positive for the bacteria Clostridium.

The company today warned that the bacteria had been found in 38 tons of a type of whey protein concentrate processed at its plant at Hautapu in the Waikato in May 2012, but hasn’t yet provided any detail on the customers, countries or specific products that may be tainted.

Fonterra managing director NZ Milk Products Gary Romano told reporters it was up to Fonterra’s customers, “in conjunction with their regulatory authorities, to make statements about particular consumer products,” if appropriate.

Fonterra is the world’s fourth-largest dairy company, with annual revenues of more tan $16 billion.

IMPORTANT NOTICE:

The Internet Mafia has previously censored Public Health Emergency and global health warnings posted on this blog. The cabal have blocked or buried for commercial reasons potentially life-saving alerts concerning food items originating from New Zealand, especially Fonterra milk products.

What is botulism?

Botulism is a rare but serious paralytic illness caused by a nerve toxin that is produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum and sometimes by strains of Clostridium butyricum and Clostridium baratii. There are five main kinds of  botulism. Foodborne botulism is caused by eating foods that contain the botulinum toxin. Wound botulism is caused by toxin produced from a wound infected with Clostridium botulinum. Infant botulism is caused by consuming the spores of the botulinum bacteria, which then grow in the intestines and release toxin. Adult intestinal toxemia (adult intestinal colonization) botulism is a very rare kind of botulism that occurs among adults by the same route as infant botulism. Lastly, iatrogenic botulism can occur from accidental overdose of botulinum toxin. All forms of botulism can be fatal and are considered medical emergencies. Foodborne botulism is a public health emergency because many people can be poisoned by eating a contaminated food. [CDC]

Clostridium botulinum bacteria -s
Clostridium botulinum
is the name of a group of bacteria. They can be found in soil, water sediment and fish. These rod-shaped organisms are anaerobic (they grow best in low oxygen conditions). The gram positive bacteria form spores (endospore forming), which allow them to survive in a dormant state until exposed to conditions that can support their growth. There are seven types of botulism toxin designated by the letters A through G; only types A, B, E and F cause illness in humans. [Source CDC and others]

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U.S. FBI Cost $500 Per Head in Healthcare, Losses

Posted by feww on March 3, 2010

Press Release: Safe Food for a healthy Life

Foodborne Illness Costs Nation $152 Billion Annually – Nearly $39 Billion Loss Attributed to Produce

Washington DC – Acute foodborne illnesses cost the United States an estimated $152 billion per year in healthcare, workplace and other economic losses, according to a report published today by the Produce Safety Project (PSP).

The study, Health-Related Costs from Foodborne Illness in the United States, was written by Dr. Robert L. Scharff, a former Food and Drug Administration (FDA) economist and current Ohio State University assistant professor in the department of consumer sciences. The study estimates that more than a quarter of these costs, an estimated $39 billion, are attributable to foodborne illnesses associated with fresh, canned and processed produce.

The FDA has announced that it will propose before the end of the year mandatory and enforceable safety standards for the growing, harvesting and packing of fresh produce. These will be the first nationwide safety standards for fresh fruits and vegetables.

“An up-to-date cost analysis of foodborne illnesses is critical for FDA officials and lawmakers to craft the most effective and efficient reforms,” said Jim O’Hara, PSP director. “A decade ago, we spent more than $1.3 billion annually to try to reduce the burden of foodborne illness and today we are spending even more. We need to make certain we are spending limited funds wisely and hitting our target of reducing sicknesses and deaths, and this study gives us a yardstick to measure our progress.”

Produce (fresh, canned and processed) accounts for roughly 19,700,000 of the reported illnesses documented, at a cost of approximately $1,960 per case and $39 billion annually in economic losses. California, Texas, New York, Florida, Illinois and Pennsylvania were the states most impacted by foodborne illness cases related to produce.

In additional to national data, the report includes data at the state level.

“The contribution of this study is that it provides more complete estimates of the health-related cost of foodborne illness in the United States by summing both medical costs (hospital services, physician services, and drugs) and quality-of-life losses (deaths, pain, suffering, and functional disability) for each of the major pathogens associated with foodborne illness,” said Dr. Scharff. “This cost includes both expenses to the person made ill such as pain and suffering losses and costs to others in society such as outlays by insurance companies that pay medical expenses.”

Scharff based his analysis on the economic principles currently used by FDA and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) economists in their cost analyses. In addition, to account for uncertainty he utilized confidence intervals and sensitivity analysis.

The cost of foodborne illness is calculated on both an aggregate level and a pathogen-specific level. To view a full copy of the report and the state-by-state data analysis, simply visit http://www.producesafetyproject.org and click on the Health-Related Costs report.

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http://www.producesafetyproject.org.

Interactive Map: Annual Health-Related Costs of Foodborne Illness for Each State

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