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Lead contamination spurs recall of water bottles from L.L. Bean

Thousands of insulated water bottles designed for children and sold by L.L. Bean are under recall for lead content because the Chinese manufacturer used the wrong kind of solder material.

Insulated water bottles designed for children are being recalled because of lead contamination. The four above patterns and one below are all included in the recall.

Insulated water bottles designed for children are being recalled because of lead contamination. The four above patterns and one below are all included in the recall.

About 6,700 of the recalled bottles were sold online, at retail stores and through the L.L. Bean catalog from July 2015 through May of this year, according to the recall notice on the Consumer Products Safety Commission website.

“The lead solder at the exterior base of the bottle contains high levels of lead. Lead is toxic if ingested by young children and can cause adverse health issues,” the July 21 notice states.

“Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled water bottles and contact L.L.Bean for a full refund.”

When sold, the recalled 13.5-ouncerecalled L.L. Bean kids water bottle insulated water bottles carried label stickers with the item identification number 297684 on the bottom of each bottle. The stickers also had the codes “PO#844” and “BB2D2-LLB-R45-0413.”

The bottles were available in five printed graphic patterns:

  • Dino Bones;
  • Flower Power;
  • Orange Grid camo;
  • Purple Tie Dye Butterfly, and
  • Robo Shark.

“Routine testing by the manufacturer resulted in a positive reading for the presence of lead on the outside bottom of the bottle where the outer vacuum layer is sealed,” according to a statement on the L.L. Bean website.

“It was determined that some of the water bottles provided to L.L. Bean were erroneously sealed on the bottom with a solder bead containing lead instead of the lead-free solder bead originally specified. This could potentially expose the user of the bottle to the lead seal on the outside bottom of the water bottle. For your child’s safety, immediately stop using the water bottle and return the bottle to L.L. Bean,” the company stated.

GSI Outdoors Inc. of Spokane, WA, imported and distributed the Chinese water bottles, according to the recall notice.

Federal officials warn that even very low levels of lead can harm children.

“Protecting children from exposure to lead is important to lifelong good health. No safe blood lead level in children has been identified. Even low levels of lead in blood have been shown to affect IQ, ability to pay attention, and academic achievement. And effects of lead exposure cannot be corrected,” according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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Food Safety News

ConAgra expands recall of chicken and beef over metal fragments

The July 6 recall by ConAgra Foods was expanded Friday to include an additional 191,791 pounds–up from the original 3,806 pounds—for a total of 195,597 pounds of chicken and beef P.F. Chang’s brand entrée products that may be contaminated with extraneous materials, specifically metal.

recalled P.F. Changs chicken beef ConAgraThe problem was first discovered on July 1 by an employee at the Russellville, AR ConAgra facility who observed metal fragments while dispensing sugar from a supplier for sauce formulation during processing. No injuries have yet been associated with the metal fragment contamination.

The fragments range in size between 2 and 9 millimeters (mm) in diameter, and are curled, malleable and shiny. The metal fragments may be embedded in the sauce contained within the frozen entrée products.

The frozen chicken and beef entrée items were produced on various dates between May 31, 2016 and June 22, 2016. The following products are subject to recall:

• 22-oz. plastic bagged meal packages of “P.F. Chang’s Home Menu Signature Spicy Chicken” with “Use By” date of 6/08/17 and case code 5006616500.

• 22-oz. plastic bagged meal packages of “P.F. Chang’s Home Menu Mongolian Style Beef” with “Use By” date of 6/17/17 and case code 5006617400.

• 22-oz. plastic bagged meal packages of “P.F. Chang’s Home Menu Mongolian Style Beef” with “Use By” date of 6/1/17 and case code 5006615800.

• 22-oz. plastic bagged meal packages of “P.F. Chang’s Home Menu Beef with Broccoli” with “Use By” date of 6/4/17 and case code 5006616100.

• 22-oz. plastic bagged meal packages of “P.F. Chang’s Home Menu Sweet & Sour Chicken” with “Use By” date of 6/3/17 and case code 5006616000.

• 22-oz. plastic bagged meal packages of “P.F. Chang’s Home Menu General Chang’s Chicken” with “Use By” date of 6/3/17 and case code 5006616000.

• 22-oz. plastic bagged meal packages of “P.F. Chang’s Home Menu Garlic Chicken with Dan Dan Noodles” with “Use By” date of 6/8/17 and case code 5006616500.

• 22-oz. plastic bagged meal packages of “P.F. Chang’s Home Menu Grilled Chicken Teriyaki with Lo Mein Noodles” with “Use By” date of 6/10/17 and case code 5006616700.

• 22-oz. plastic bagged meal packages of “P.F. Chang’s Home Menu Signature Spicy Chicken” with “Use By” date of 5/26/17 and case code 5006615200.

The products subject to recall bear establishment number “EST. 233” or “EST. P-115” inside the USDA mark of inspection. These items were shipped to distributors and retail locations nationwide.

The resulting sauce is a component in the frozen entrée products. On July 14, 2016, ConAgra Foods was notified by the supplier of an FDA recall involving multiple production lots of sugar due to potential metal contamination. The recall action involved additional lots of sugar potentially used in FSIS regulated products at ConAgra Foods, and resulted in this expansion of the initial recall action.

Consumers who have purchased these products are urged not to consume them. These products should be thrown away or returned to the place of purchase. Anyone concerned about an injury or illness should contact a healthcare provider.

FSIS routinely conducts recall effectiveness checks to verify recalling firms notify their customers of the recall and that steps are taken to make certain that the product is no longer available to consumers. When available, the retail distribution list(s) will be posted on the FSIS website.

Food Safety News

FDA to Block Pomegranate Seeds from Turkey; Townsend Recall Expands

Updated July 30 with expanded recall information:

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration said on Saturday it will detain shipments of pomegranate seeds from Turkey as health officials have narrowed the likely cause of a Hepatitis A outbreak that has sickened at least 127 people in 8 states. On Sunday, one of the frozen berry recalls associated with the outbreak expanded.

The agency has worked with the Centers for Disease Control and state and local health authorities for several weeks to try and track down the ingredient making people sick. Health officials have now determined that the “most likely vehicle” for the virus appears to be a common shipment of pomegranate seeds from Goknur Foodstuffs Import Export Trading of Turkey that were used by Townsend Farms to make Organic Antioxidant Blend, a mix of frozen berries, sold to Costco and Harris Teeter stores.

FDA is now barring Goknur from shipping pomegranate seeds into the United States. It is not clear how much product is impacted, but an FDA official noted that Turkey is a “minor player” compared to countries like India, Iran, China, and Thailand, when it comes to providing pomegranate to the U.S. market.

“This outbreak highlights the food safety challenge posed by today’s global food system,” said Michael Taylor, deputy commissioner for foods and veterinary medicine, in a press release over the weekend. “The presence in a single product of multiple ingredients from multiple countries compounds the difficulty of finding the cause of an illness outbreak. The Hepatitis A outbreak shows how we have improved our ability to investigate and respond to outbreaks, but also why we are working to build a food safety system that more effectively prevents them.”

The Townsend Farms blend has been linked to the multistate outbreak affecting mostly western states. According to CDC, about half of the reported Hepatitis A cases are in California.

Colorado has reported 25 and Arizona 17. Hawaii is reporting 7, New Mexico and Nevada have 5 cases and Utah and Wisconsin have 2 each. The cases reported in Wisconsin, however, resulted from exposure to the product in California, according to health officials.

Nearly 60 percent of those sickened are women. The ages in the outbreak range from 2 to 84 and include 6 children under the age of 18. CDC said none of the children had been vaccinated. More than half of those ill required hospitalization.

The outbreak strain of hepatitis A virus, belonging to genotype 1B, is rarely seen in the Americas but circulates in North Africa and the Middle East, according to CDC.

The outbreak has sparked several large recalls. In early June, Townsend Farms recalled more than 300,000 four pound packages of the frozen berries sold at Costco and then issued another recall of berries sold at Harris Teeter. Last week, Scenic Fruit Company recalled over 60,000 bags of Woodstock Frozen Organic Pomegranate Kernels because their product, imported from Turkey, has the potential to be contaminated with Hepatitis A.

On Sunday, FDA announced the Townsend Farms frozen berry recall has been expanded again. The company is now recalling Townsend Farms Organic Antioxidant Blend, 3 lb. bag with UPC 0 78414 40444 8. The codes are located on the back of the package with the words “BEST BY” followed by the code T122114 sequentially through T053115, followed by a letter. All letter designations are included in the voluntary recall, according to the expanded recall announcement.

The announcement also said that the epidemiological evidence “does not support an association between the illness outbreak and the four other berry products (raspberry, blueberry, strawberry and dark cherry) in the Frozen Organic Antioxidant blend,” which were also used in other Townsend Farms products, so consumers do not have reason to be concerned about those berries.

Townsend Farms said an FDA inspection of the company’s frozen fruit repacking operations has been completed. “The FDA found no evidence linking either the Townsend Farms, Inc.’s repacking facility or any food handler who had possible contact with the product to the source of the illness outbreak,” according to the release.

Hepatitis A, a liver disease, can range from mild to severe and can last anywhere from a few weeks to several months. Symptoms usually occur within 15 to 50 days of exposure and include fatigue, abdominal pain, jaundice, abnormal liver tests, dark urine and pale stool.

If a person has been exposed to the Hepatitis A virus within two weeks or less, they may be able to prevent the disease by receiving a vaccine. Consumers who may have eaten recalled product or have Hepatitis A symptoms should consult with their healthcare provider or their local health department.

 

Food Safety News

Listeria outbreak prompts caramel apple recall

Two companies have announced recalls for their caramel apples as a result of the current outbreak of Listeriosis. Both companies — California Snack Foods and Happy Apples — cited Bidart Bros. as one of their apple suppliers.

The Center for Disease Control has noted 29 illnesses in 10 states linked to the outbreak, and it has advised consumers not to eat commercially produced, pre-packaged caramel apples until more is known.

“We recently received notice from Bidart Bros., one of our apple suppliers to our California facility, that there may be a connection between this outbreak and the apples that they supplied to that facility,” California Snack Foods said in a press release.

California Snack Foods’ voluntary recall is of “California Snack Foods” brand caramel apples with a best-use-by date between Aug. 15 and Nov. 28. The product was sold in single packs and three packs, and each package will have a best-use-by date on the front of the label. They were available for retail sale through grocery, discount and club stores, generally in the produce section and were distributed to retailers in Arizona, California, Nevada, Texas and Utah.

The Happy Apples recall is for product with similar best-use-by dates: Aug. 25-Nov. 23. Happy Apple caramel apples are sold in single pack, three packs, four packs and eight packs, and each package will have a best use by date on the front of the label. They were available for retail sale through grocery, discount and club stores, generally in the produce section and were distributed to retailers in Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Washington and Wisconsin.

According to California Snack foods, the company used the last of the Bidart Bros. apples in the first week of November, and they should no longer be available in stores. Happy Apples ceased its operations at the end of October as part of the company’s normal, seasonal shut down, and the caramel apples produced are no longer available in stores.

“However, out of an abundance of caution and concern for consumer safety, we are recommending that consumers follow the advice of the CDC and remove any caramel apples you may have in storage and dispose of them in a secure container to avoid potential contamination in animals,” each company stated in a press release.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

FDA: Idaho Knew About Chobani Mold Problem Before 2013 Recall

A federal report obtained under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) indicates that the Idaho Department of Agriculture knew about that moldy Chobani yogurt two months before it was recalled.

The state denies the claim found in a U.S. Food and Drug Administration report by the Twin Falls Times-News, the daily newspaper located near the Idaho Chobani plant.

Moldy Greek yogurt by Chobani made about 300 people sick in an event associated with a September 2013 recalls of the products.

Documents released to the newspaper show that the Idaho Department of Agriculture became aware of the problem during a routine inspection two months before the company’s voluntary recall of 35 yogurt varieties.

The company said that its products were contaminated with a mold commonly found in yogurt production known as Mucor circinelloides.

“In July the routine Grade A sampling and testing samples taken by the Idaho Department of Agriculture (ISDA) from the Chobani Idaho Inc. production were visually noted, by the laboratory technician, that surface defects were present and additional testing was conducted noting a yeast like growth developing in the yogurt samples,” FDA reported.

The Idaho Department of Agriculture claims it never found any mold and does not know the source of FDA’s information. What it knew in July 2013 did not prompt FDA to take any action on its own.

“All of the raw and finished product-testing results met the requirements of the Pasteurized Milk Ordinance,” a state spokesman told the Times-News. “All of the tests we’ve done met the requirements.”

Food Safety News

FDA: Idaho Knew About Chobani Mold Problem Before 2013 Recall

A federal report obtained under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) indicates that the Idaho Department of Agriculture knew about that moldy Chobani yogurt two months before it was recalled.

The state denies the claim found in a U.S. Food and Drug Administration report by the Twin Falls Times-News, the daily newspaper located near the Idaho Chobani plant.

Moldy Greek yogurt by Chobani made about 300 people sick in an event associated with a September 2013 recalls of the products.

Documents released to the newspaper show that the Idaho Department of Agriculture became aware of the problem during a routine inspection two months before the company’s voluntary recall of 35 yogurt varieties.

The company said that its products were contaminated with a mold commonly found in yogurt production known as Mucor circinelloides.

“In July the routine Grade A sampling and testing samples taken by the Idaho Department of Agriculture (ISDA) from the Chobani Idaho Inc. production were visually noted, by the laboratory technician, that surface defects were present and additional testing was conducted noting a yeast like growth developing in the yogurt samples,” FDA reported.

The Idaho Department of Agriculture claims it never found any mold and does not know the source of FDA’s information. What it knew in July 2013 did not prompt FDA to take any action on its own.

“All of the raw and finished product-testing results met the requirements of the Pasteurized Milk Ordinance,” a state spokesman told the Times-News. “All of the tests we’ve done met the requirements.”

Food Safety News

FDA: Idaho Knew About Chobani Mold Problem Before 2013 Recall

A federal report obtained under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) indicates that the Idaho Department of Agriculture knew about that moldy Chobani yogurt two months before it was recalled.

The state denies the claim found in a U.S. Food and Drug Administration report by the Twin Falls Times-News, the daily newspaper located near the Idaho Chobani plant.

Moldy Greek yogurt by Chobani made about 300 people sick in an event associated with a September 2013 recalls of the products.

Documents released to the newspaper show that the Idaho Department of Agriculture became aware of the problem during a routine inspection two months before the company’s voluntary recall of 35 yogurt varieties.

The company said that its products were contaminated with a mold commonly found in yogurt production known as Mucor circinelloides.

“In July the routine Grade A sampling and testing samples taken by the Idaho Department of Agriculture (ISDA) from the Chobani Idaho Inc. production were visually noted, by the laboratory technician, that surface defects were present and additional testing was conducted noting a yeast like growth developing in the yogurt samples,” FDA reported.

The Idaho Department of Agriculture claims it never found any mold and does not know the source of FDA’s information. What it knew in July 2013 did not prompt FDA to take any action on its own.

“All of the raw and finished product-testing results met the requirements of the Pasteurized Milk Ordinance,” a state spokesman told the Times-News. “All of the tests we’ve done met the requirements.”

Food Safety News

FDA: Idaho Knew About Chobani Mold Problem Before 2013 Recall

A federal report obtained under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) indicates that the Idaho Department of Agriculture knew about that moldy Chobani yogurt two months before it was recalled.

The state denies the claim found in a U.S. Food and Drug Administration report by the Twin Falls Times-News, the daily newspaper located near the Idaho Chobani plant.

Moldy Greek yogurt by Chobani made about 300 people sick in an event associated with a September 2013 recalls of the products.

Documents released to the newspaper show that the Idaho Department of Agriculture became aware of the problem during a routine inspection two months before the company’s voluntary recall of 35 yogurt varieties.

The company said that its products were contaminated with a mold commonly found in yogurt production known as Mucor circinelloides.

“In July the routine Grade A sampling and testing samples taken by the Idaho Department of Agriculture (ISDA) from the Chobani Idaho Inc. production were visually noted, by the laboratory technician, that surface defects were present and additional testing was conducted noting a yeast like growth developing in the yogurt samples,” FDA reported.

The Idaho Department of Agriculture claims it never found any mold and does not know the source of FDA’s information. What it knew in July 2013 did not prompt FDA to take any action on its own.

“All of the raw and finished product-testing results met the requirements of the Pasteurized Milk Ordinance,” a state spokesman told the Times-News. “All of the tests we’ve done met the requirements.”

Food Safety News

FDA: Idaho Knew About Chobani Mold Problem Before 2013 Recall

A federal report obtained under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) indicates that the Idaho Department of Agriculture knew about that moldy Chobani yogurt two months before it was recalled.

The state denies the claim found in a U.S. Food and Drug Administration report by the Twin Falls Times-News, the daily newspaper located near the Idaho Chobani plant.

Moldy Greek yogurt by Chobani made about 300 people sick in an event associated with a September 2013 recalls of the products.

Documents released to the newspaper show that the Idaho Department of Agriculture became aware of the problem during a routine inspection two months before the company’s voluntary recall of 35 yogurt varieties.

The company said that its products were contaminated with a mold commonly found in yogurt production known as Mucor circinelloides.

“In July the routine Grade A sampling and testing samples taken by the Idaho Department of Agriculture (ISDA) from the Chobani Idaho Inc. production were visually noted, by the laboratory technician, that surface defects were present and additional testing was conducted noting a yeast like growth developing in the yogurt samples,” FDA reported.

The Idaho Department of Agriculture claims it never found any mold and does not know the source of FDA’s information. What it knew in July 2013 did not prompt FDA to take any action on its own.

“All of the raw and finished product-testing results met the requirements of the Pasteurized Milk Ordinance,” a state spokesman told the Times-News. “All of the tests we’ve done met the requirements.”

Food Safety News

FDA: Idaho Knew About Chobani Mold Problem Before 2013 Recall

A federal report obtained under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) indicates that the Idaho Department of Agriculture knew about that moldy Chobani yogurt two months before it was recalled.

The state denies the claim found in a U.S. Food and Drug Administration report by the Twin Falls Times-News, the daily newspaper located near the Idaho Chobani plant.

Moldy Greek yogurt by Chobani made about 300 people sick in an event associated with a September 2013 recalls of the products.

Documents released to the newspaper show that the Idaho Department of Agriculture became aware of the problem during a routine inspection two months before the company’s voluntary recall of 35 yogurt varieties.

The company said that its products were contaminated with a mold commonly found in yogurt production known as Mucor circinelloides.

“In July the routine Grade A sampling and testing samples taken by the Idaho Department of Agriculture (ISDA) from the Chobani Idaho Inc. production were visually noted, by the laboratory technician, that surface defects were present and additional testing was conducted noting a yeast like growth developing in the yogurt samples,” FDA reported.

The Idaho Department of Agriculture claims it never found any mold and does not know the source of FDA’s information. What it knew in July 2013 did not prompt FDA to take any action on its own.

“All of the raw and finished product-testing results met the requirements of the Pasteurized Milk Ordinance,” a state spokesman told the Times-News. “All of the tests we’ve done met the requirements.”

Food Safety News

FDA: Idaho Knew About Chobani Mold Problem Before 2013 Recall

A federal report obtained under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) indicates that the Idaho Department of Agriculture knew about that moldy Chobani yogurt two months before it was recalled.

The state denies the claim found in a U.S. Food and Drug Administration report by the Twin Falls Times-News, the daily newspaper located near the Idaho Chobani plant.

Moldy Greek yogurt by Chobani made about 300 people sick in an event associated with a September 2013 recalls of the products.

Documents released to the newspaper show that the Idaho Department of Agriculture became aware of the problem during a routine inspection two months before the company’s voluntary recall of 35 yogurt varieties.

The company said that its products were contaminated with a mold commonly found in yogurt production known as Mucor circinelloides.

“In July the routine Grade A sampling and testing samples taken by the Idaho Department of Agriculture (ISDA) from the Chobani Idaho Inc. production were visually noted, by the laboratory technician, that surface defects were present and additional testing was conducted noting a yeast like growth developing in the yogurt samples,” FDA reported.

The Idaho Department of Agriculture claims it never found any mold and does not know the source of FDA’s information. What it knew in July 2013 did not prompt FDA to take any action on its own.

“All of the raw and finished product-testing results met the requirements of the Pasteurized Milk Ordinance,” a state spokesman told the Times-News. “All of the tests we’ve done met the requirements.”

Food Safety News

FDA: Idaho Knew About Chobani Mold Problem Before 2013 Recall

A federal report obtained under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) indicates that the Idaho Department of Agriculture knew about that moldy Chobani yogurt two months before it was recalled.

The state denies the claim found in a U.S. Food and Drug Administration report by the Twin Falls Times-News, the daily newspaper located near the Idaho Chobani plant.

Moldy Greek yogurt by Chobani made about 300 people sick in an event associated with a September 2013 recalls of the products.

Documents released to the newspaper show that the Idaho Department of Agriculture became aware of the problem during a routine inspection two months before the company’s voluntary recall of 35 yogurt varieties.

The company said that its products were contaminated with a mold commonly found in yogurt production known as Mucor circinelloides.

“In July the routine Grade A sampling and testing samples taken by the Idaho Department of Agriculture (ISDA) from the Chobani Idaho Inc. production were visually noted, by the laboratory technician, that surface defects were present and additional testing was conducted noting a yeast like growth developing in the yogurt samples,” FDA reported.

The Idaho Department of Agriculture claims it never found any mold and does not know the source of FDA’s information. What it knew in July 2013 did not prompt FDA to take any action on its own.

“All of the raw and finished product-testing results met the requirements of the Pasteurized Milk Ordinance,” a state spokesman told the Times-News. “All of the tests we’ve done met the requirements.”

Food Safety News

FDA: Idaho Knew About Chobani Mold Problem Before 2013 Recall

A federal report obtained under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) indicates that the Idaho Department of Agriculture knew about that moldy Chobani yogurt two months before it was recalled.

The state denies the claim found in a U.S. Food and Drug Administration report by the Twin Falls Times-News, the daily newspaper located near the Idaho Chobani plant.

Moldy Greek yogurt by Chobani made about 300 people sick in an event associated with a September 2013 recalls of the products.

Documents released to the newspaper show that the Idaho Department of Agriculture became aware of the problem during a routine inspection two months before the company’s voluntary recall of 35 yogurt varieties.

The company said that its products were contaminated with a mold commonly found in yogurt production known as Mucor circinelloides.

“In July the routine Grade A sampling and testing samples taken by the Idaho Department of Agriculture (ISDA) from the Chobani Idaho Inc. production were visually noted, by the laboratory technician, that surface defects were present and additional testing was conducted noting a yeast like growth developing in the yogurt samples,” FDA reported.

The Idaho Department of Agriculture claims it never found any mold and does not know the source of FDA’s information. What it knew in July 2013 did not prompt FDA to take any action on its own.

“All of the raw and finished product-testing results met the requirements of the Pasteurized Milk Ordinance,” a state spokesman told the Times-News. “All of the tests we’ve done met the requirements.”

Food Safety News

FDA: Idaho Knew About Chobani Mold Problem Before 2013 Recall

A federal report obtained under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) indicates that the Idaho Department of Agriculture knew about that moldy Chobani yogurt two months before it was recalled.

The state denies the claim found in a U.S. Food and Drug Administration report by the Twin Falls Times-News, the daily newspaper located near the Idaho Chobani plant.

Moldy Greek yogurt by Chobani made about 300 people sick in an event associated with a September 2013 recalls of the products.

Documents released to the newspaper show that the Idaho Department of Agriculture became aware of the problem during a routine inspection two months before the company’s voluntary recall of 35 yogurt varieties.

The company said that its products were contaminated with a mold commonly found in yogurt production known as Mucor circinelloides.

“In July the routine Grade A sampling and testing samples taken by the Idaho Department of Agriculture (ISDA) from the Chobani Idaho Inc. production were visually noted, by the laboratory technician, that surface defects were present and additional testing was conducted noting a yeast like growth developing in the yogurt samples,” FDA reported.

The Idaho Department of Agriculture claims it never found any mold and does not know the source of FDA’s information. What it knew in July 2013 did not prompt FDA to take any action on its own.

“All of the raw and finished product-testing results met the requirements of the Pasteurized Milk Ordinance,” a state spokesman told the Times-News. “All of the tests we’ve done met the requirements.”

Food Safety News

FDA: Idaho Knew About Chobani Mold Problem Before 2013 Recall

A federal report obtained under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) indicates that the Idaho Department of Agriculture knew about that moldy Chobani yogurt two months before it was recalled.

The state denies the claim found in a U.S. Food and Drug Administration report by the Twin Falls Times-News, the daily newspaper located near the Idaho Chobani plant.

Moldy Greek yogurt by Chobani made about 300 people sick in an event associated with a September 2013 recalls of the products.

Documents released to the newspaper show that the Idaho Department of Agriculture became aware of the problem during a routine inspection two months before the company’s voluntary recall of 35 yogurt varieties.

The company said that its products were contaminated with a mold commonly found in yogurt production known as Mucor circinelloides.

“In July the routine Grade A sampling and testing samples taken by the Idaho Department of Agriculture (ISDA) from the Chobani Idaho Inc. production were visually noted, by the laboratory technician, that surface defects were present and additional testing was conducted noting a yeast like growth developing in the yogurt samples,” FDA reported.

The Idaho Department of Agriculture claims it never found any mold and does not know the source of FDA’s information. What it knew in July 2013 did not prompt FDA to take any action on its own.

“All of the raw and finished product-testing results met the requirements of the Pasteurized Milk Ordinance,” a state spokesman told the Times-News. “All of the tests we’ve done met the requirements.”

Food Safety News

Developing a Food Recall Plan is Important to any Food Processor’s Business

(This article by Frank Gublo of Michigan State University Extension and Paige Filice of MSU’s Department of Fisheries and Wildlife was first posted July 28, 2014, on the MSU Extension site and is reposted here with permission.)

Food processors should have processes in place, such as a HACCP plan and a recall plan, to evaluate products and the management of complaints related to food safety. Typically, food safety problems are found both internally and externally, through consumer and regulatory notification as well as through internal inspection and laboratory discovery.

Upon receiving notification or a consumer complaint, the food processor should establish a record of the notification. The processor will need to know who is notifying the processor of the problem, including name, address, phone number and email address. Also, record what is wrong with the product, what is the unique batch or production code, what was the purchase date and location and what were the injury or illness, if any.

For small processors, the owner/operator will likely receive the complaint. In larger firms, the person receiving the complaint would forward the complaint to those responsible for the recall plan. In either case, the responsible person should make an initial assessment, and, if necessary, put the recall plan into effect.

The first step would be to determine what hazards have been identified with the food product and determine the public safety concerns. Two basic criteria can be used to determine how to proceed. These criteria are related to how widespread is the problem and what is the severity of the problem. For instance, E. coli O157:H7 is a serious condition, and one illness related to a product should prompt a recall, where less serious and less widespread illness may not prompt a recall.

Beyond the basic criteria of severity and spread, additional criteria may be used in the evaluation and the decision of how to handle a complaint related to a product. Public relations, contracts establishing rules for recalls, and actions by retailers may also influence the decision to enact the recall procedures.

In any case, food safety is a serious concern, and protection of the public should be an important consideration. Having a recall plan is an important piece of any food processor’s business. When a complaint is received, the plan will provide guidelines and eliminate mistakes made under stress when determining what actions to take.

Food processors who are taking their first steps into distribution should consider developing a recall plan. Educators at Michigan State University Extension and Innovation Counselors at the Michigan State University Product Center assist businesses in the establishment of good practices to improve business effectiveness. For further information and assistance with employee communications, please contact your local MSU Extension office.

Food Safety News

Wawona Packing expands Listeria-related recall

Wawona Packing Co. of Cutler, CA, is expanding its July 19 voluntary recall of whole white and yellow peaches, white and yellow nectarines, plums and pluots due to the potential of the products being contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes.

The July 19 recall covered specific lots of products packed June 1-July 12, but Wawona has expanded the recall, as a precautionary step, to cover all products packed in the Wawona Packing Co. facility from June 1-July 17 because the company’s experts have yet to identify with scientific certainty the source of Listeria monocytogenes in the facility.

Beginning on July 18, no products have been packed at the Wawona Packing facility in Cutler. Products packed on or after July 18 outside of the Wawona Packing Co. facility are not affected by this recall.

Wawona Packing shipped the recalled products directly to retailers and wholesalers who resell or further distribute the products. “Because we do not know the locations of the companies or stores that received the products from our direct customers, the company is issuing a nationwide recall,” Wawona announced in a press release.

Wawona Packing has already notified its business customers of the expanded recall, and requested that they remove the additional recalled products from commerce. Wawona Packing is voluntarily recalling these products in consultation with the U.S. Food & Drug Administration.

The July 19 recall was initiated based on internal company testing. The company shut down the packinglines, retrofitted equipment, sanitized the facility and is working with experts on Listeria in making further improvements to the food-safety program.

“Our packinglines in the Cutler, California facility will not reopen until we know, in consultation with experts, that they are safe,” the company stated in the release.

“Wawona Packing believes in the highest standards of food safety,” Brent Smittcamp, company president, said in the release. “We have been working around the clock to determine the source of the Listeria monocytogenes. We have brought in nationally known experts in food safety to investigate every part of our packing facility, and we are working with the U.S. Food & Drug Administration.”

Consumers can identify the recalled products by the information provided in the linked photographs. The recalled products include the following brands marketed to consumers: “Sweet 2 Eat,” “Sweet 2 Eat Organic,” “Mrs. Smittcamp’s,” and are also packed in private labels.

These brands will be on the boxes or on the stickers placed on individual fruit. Anyone who has the recalled products in their possession should not consume them and should discard them. If consumers are seeking reimbursement, they should return to the store where they purchased the product to request a refund, providing proof of purchase or receipt if available.

Consumers with questions may contact Wawona Packing’s consumer information desk at 888/232-9912 or visit www.wawonapacking.com.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Five Additional Days Added to Wawona Fruit Recall

Wawona Packing Company of Cutler, CA, is adding fruit produced on five additional days to the recall of whole white and yellow peaches, white and yellow nectarines, plums and pluots.

The company originally recalled fruit packed between June 1 and July 12, 2014, for possible contamination with Listeria monocytogenes. The expanded recall now extends that period of time five additional days to July 17, 2014, according to spokeswoman Amy Philpott.

To date, health officials have not informed Wawona of any confirmed cases of illnesses linked with this recall,” she said. “Wawona is working with food safety officials and investigators regarding all claims.”

Philpott says that Wawona expanded the recall “out of an abundance of caution” through July 17, the last day before operations were suspended at the facility because of the ongoing investigation into the source of the Listeria in the building.

Beginning on July 18, 2014, no products have been packed at the Wawona Packing facility in Cutler, CA. Products packed on or after July 18 outside of the Wawona Packing Co. facility are not affected by this recall.

Fruit contaminated with Listeria can cause serious illness and even death, with children, the elderly and anyone with a compromised immune system especially at risk. Symptoms include high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea. Listeria infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women.

The recalled products were sold under the following brands : Sweet 2 Eat, Sweet 2 Eat Organic and Mrs. Smittcamp’s, and are also packed under private labels. These brands will be on the boxes or on the stickers placed on individual fruit.

Anyone who has the recalled products in their possession should not consume them and should discard them. If consumers are seeking reimbursement, they should return to the store where they purchased the product to request a refund, providing proof of purchase or receipt if available.

Product photos can be found on the company’s website at www.wawonapacking.com.

Wawona shipped the recalled products directly to retailers and wholesalers who resell or further distribute the products. Because the company does not know the locations of the distributors or stores that received the products from its direct customers, the company is issuing a nationwide recall.

The July 19 recall was initiated based on internal company testing. The company shut down the packing lines, retrofitted equipment, sanitized the facility, and is working with experts on Listeria in making further improvements to the food safety program. The packing lines in the Cutler facility will not reopen until Wawona can be certain they are safe.

“Wawona Packing believes in the highest standards of food safety. We have been working around the clock to determine the source of the Listeria monocytogenes. We have brought in nationally known experts in food safety to investigate every part of our packing facility, and we are working with the U.S. Food & Drug Administration,” said company president Brent Smittcamp.

Food Safety News

Five Additional Days Added to Wawona Fruit Recall

Wawona Packing Company of Cutler, CA, is adding fruit produced on five additional days to the recall of whole white and yellow peaches, white and yellow nectarines, plums and pluots.

The company originally recalled fruit packed between June 1 and July 12, 2014, for possible contamination with Listeria monocytogenes. The expanded recall now extends that period of time five additional days to July 17, 2014, according to spokeswoman Amy Philpott.

To date, health officials have not informed Wawona of any confirmed cases of illnesses linked with this recall,” she said. “Wawona is working with food safety officials and investigators regarding all claims.”

Philpott says that Wawona expanded the recall “out of an abundance of caution” through July 17, the last day before operations were suspended at the facility because of the ongoing investigation into the source of the Listeria in the building.

Beginning on July 18, 2014, no products have been packed at the Wawona Packing facility in Cutler, CA. Products packed on or after July 18 outside of the Wawona Packing Co. facility are not affected by this recall.

Fruit contaminated with Listeria can cause serious illness and even death, with children, the elderly and anyone with a compromised immune system especially at risk. Symptoms include high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea. Listeria infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women.

The recalled products were sold under the following brands : Sweet 2 Eat, Sweet 2 Eat Organic and Mrs. Smittcamp’s, and are also packed under private labels. These brands will be on the boxes or on the stickers placed on individual fruit.

Anyone who has the recalled products in their possession should not consume them and should discard them. If consumers are seeking reimbursement, they should return to the store where they purchased the product to request a refund, providing proof of purchase or receipt if available.

Product photos can be found on the company’s website at www.wawonapacking.com.

Wawona shipped the recalled products directly to retailers and wholesalers who resell or further distribute the products. Because the company does not know the locations of the distributors or stores that received the products from its direct customers, the company is issuing a nationwide recall.

The July 19 recall was initiated based on internal company testing. The company shut down the packing lines, retrofitted equipment, sanitized the facility, and is working with experts on Listeria in making further improvements to the food safety program. The packing lines in the Cutler facility will not reopen until Wawona can be certain they are safe.

“Wawona Packing believes in the highest standards of food safety. We have been working around the clock to determine the source of the Listeria monocytogenes. We have brought in nationally known experts in food safety to investigate every part of our packing facility, and we are working with the U.S. Food & Drug Administration,” said company president Brent Smittcamp.

Food Safety News

Five Additional Days Added to Wawona Fruit Recall

Wawona Packing Company of Cutler, CA, is adding fruit produced on five additional days to the recall of whole white and yellow peaches, white and yellow nectarines, plums and pluots.

The company originally recalled fruit packed between June 1 and July 12, 2014, for possible contamination with Listeria monocytogenes. The expanded recall now extends that period of time five additional days to July 17, 2014, according to spokeswoman Amy Philpott.

To date, health officials have not informed Wawona of any confirmed cases of illnesses linked with this recall,” she said. “Wawona is working with food safety officials and investigators regarding all claims.”

Philpott says that Wawona expanded the recall “out of an abundance of caution” through July 17, the last day before operations were suspended at the facility because of the ongoing investigation into the source of the Listeria in the building.

Beginning on July 18, 2014, no products have been packed at the Wawona Packing facility in Cutler, CA. Products packed on or after July 18 outside of the Wawona Packing Co. facility are not affected by this recall.

Fruit contaminated with Listeria can cause serious illness and even death, with children, the elderly and anyone with a compromised immune system especially at risk. Symptoms include high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea. Listeria infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women.

The recalled products were sold under the following brands : Sweet 2 Eat, Sweet 2 Eat Organic and Mrs. Smittcamp’s, and are also packed under private labels. These brands will be on the boxes or on the stickers placed on individual fruit.

Anyone who has the recalled products in their possession should not consume them and should discard them. If consumers are seeking reimbursement, they should return to the store where they purchased the product to request a refund, providing proof of purchase or receipt if available.

Product photos can be found on the company’s website at www.wawonapacking.com.

Wawona shipped the recalled products directly to retailers and wholesalers who resell or further distribute the products. Because the company does not know the locations of the distributors or stores that received the products from its direct customers, the company is issuing a nationwide recall.

The July 19 recall was initiated based on internal company testing. The company shut down the packing lines, retrofitted equipment, sanitized the facility, and is working with experts on Listeria in making further improvements to the food safety program. The packing lines in the Cutler facility will not reopen until Wawona can be certain they are safe.

“Wawona Packing believes in the highest standards of food safety. We have been working around the clock to determine the source of the Listeria monocytogenes. We have brought in nationally known experts in food safety to investigate every part of our packing facility, and we are working with the U.S. Food & Drug Administration,” said company president Brent Smittcamp.

Food Safety News