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Canadian market to reopen for Italian table grapes

Italy’s Ministry of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policy (Mipaaf) has announced a deal has successfully been completed to regain access to the Canadian table grape market, which was blocked in 2010.

In a release, Mipaaf said the agreement follows the successful outcome of evaluations from Canadian phytosanitary experts who visited the country in October last year.

The inspectors visited fields in the southern Italian regions of Basilicata, Puglia and Sicily.

In summary, the ministry said producers and exporters interested in shipping to Canada would undertake the necessary steps.

“This is a major achievement for the whole Italian table grape sector, and is the fruit of the work of the Ministry of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policy in close cooperation with producer associations and regional institutions,” Mipaaf said.

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Small Percentage of Campylobacter in Canadian Chicken Antibiotic-Resistant

A small percentage of Campylobacter isolated from Canadian retail chicken meat is resistant to a key antibiotic used to treat bacterial infections in humans, according to a report by the Public Health Agency of Canada published in the July edition of Emerging Infectious Diseases.

The report tracked resistance to ciprofloxacin in Campylobacter from chicken meat between 2003 and 2010 across seven Canadian provinces, finding the most notable rates of resistance in British Columbia and Saskatchewan.

Among the years with available data, resistance ranged from roughly 4 percent to 29 percent in British Columbia, and 2 percent to 15 percent in Saskatchewan. Ontario, Quebec, and the Maritime provinces did not see more than a 4 percent resistance rate, other than the rate of 14 percent noted in Quebec in 2007.

The highest rate of resistance was found in British Columbia in 2009, when 22 out of 77 (29 percent) Campylobacter samples were resistant to ciprofloxacin. Saskatchewan also saw its highest rate of resistance, 7 out of 48 (15 percent), that year.

Ciprofloxacin is the most common drug used to treat Campylobacter infection in Canada, where an average of 31 in 100,000 people are sickened by the gastrointestinal bacteria each year, falling ill with symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea and nausea. The World Health Organization considers fluoroquinolones such as ciprofloxacin critically important to human medicine.

Many public health professionals hypothesize that antimicrobial drug use on farm animals, including among broiler chickens, has contributed to rising levels of antibiotic resistance in some pathogens, though data on such drug use is not made available by chicken growers in Canada. The U.S. banned fluoroquinolone use on chickens in 2005, though ciprofloxacin resistance in Campylobacter in the U.S. has not seemed to drop as a result, according to the report’s authors.

According to the report, the Canadian chicken industry is working with the country’s government to create a farm surveillance program that would collect data on drug use and resistance.

Health Canada’s Veterinary Drugs Directorate discourages non-therapeutic use of Category I antibiotics (including ciprofloxacin) in food-producing animals.

This report follows a study earlier this month declaring ciprofloxacin-resistant Salmonella a rare but “growing concern” in Canada, and another out of Europe and Africa that found rising levels of resistant Salmonella in North Africa and the Middle East.

Food Safety News

Cargill Recalls Ground Beef From Canadian Walmarts for Possible E. Coli Contamination

Cargill Meat Solutions is recalling Your Fresh Market brand ground beef products from the marketplace due to possible E. coli O157 contamination, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency announced Monday.

The public is being advised not to consume the recalled products described below, which have been sold at Walmart stores in Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba and Saskatchewan.

Brand Name Common Name Size Code(s) on Product UPC
Your Fresh Market Extra Lean Ground Beef Sirloin 475 g Best Before 2014.NO.28 6 05388 18363 7
Your Fresh Market Extra Lean Ground Beef 475 g Best Before 2014.NO.28 6 05388 18369 9
Your Fresh Market Medium Ground Beef 475 g Best Before 2014.NO.28 6 05388 18365 1
Your Fresh Market Lean Ground Beef 475 g Best Before 2014.NO.28 and 2014.NO.29 6 05388 18376 7
Your Fresh Market Extra Lean Ground Beef 900 g Best Before 2014.NO.28 6 05388 18372 9
Your Fresh Market Lean Ground Beef 900 g Best Before 2014.NO.28 6 05388 18378 1
Your Fresh Market Lean Ground Beef 1.6 kg Best Before 2014.NO.28 and 2014.NO.29 6 05388 18379 8

 

Check to see if you have recalled products in your home. Recalled products should be thrown out or returned to the store where they were purchased.

Food contaminated with E. coli O157 may not look or smell spoiled but can still make you sick. Symptoms can include nausea, vomiting, mild to severe abdominal cramps and watery to bloody diarrhea. In severe cases of illness, some people may have seizures or strokes, need blood transfusions and kidney dialysis or live with permanent kidney damage. In severe cases of illness, people may die.

This recall was triggered by test results. CFIA is conducting a food safety investigation, which may lead to the recall of other products. If other high-risk products are recalled, CFIA will notify the public through updated Food Recall Warnings.

The agency is verifying that industry is removing recalled product from the marketplace.There have been no reported illnesses associated with the consumption of these products.

For more information: Cargill Meat Solutions, Connie Tamoto, Communications Manager, Cargill, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, Office: (204) 947-6187, Mobile: (204) 918-0344, [email protected]

Wal-Mart Canada Corp.: Alex Roberton, Director, Corporate Affairs & Social Media, (905) 821-2111, ext. 75402, [email protected]

Consumers and industry can contact CFIA by filling out the online feedback form.

Food Safety News