FDA releases final report on spinach E coli outbreak

first_img Changes in groundwater levels during the 2006 growing season could have contributed to contamination problems on the field, according to the report. In March the ranch’s groundwater levels were higher than the San Benito riverbed, but they fell to the riverbed level in July, and then dropped below the riverbed’s level later in the season. “This potentially allowed surface river water from the river flowing into the Paicines Ranch valley to percolate into the ground again and recharge the groundwater during that period,” the report said. Mar 23, 2007 (CIDRAP News) – The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and California officials released a final report today on last fall’s nationwide Escherichia coli O157:H7 outbreak linked to fresh spinach, tracing the pathogen to a specific farm and identifying a handful of possible contamination sources. FDA final report on E coli outbreak in fresh spinach See also: There, officials found the outbreak strain in river water, cattle feces, and wild-pig feces. A grass-fed cattle operation was located on the ranch, less than a mile from the spinach field, the report says. Investigators found evidence of wild pigs in and around the cattle, growing, and irrigation well areas. San Benito County farm citedDuring the investigation, federal and California officials found the outbreak strain in 13 bags of Dole brand baby spinach and traced the contaminated products to an Aug 15 production run at a Natural Selection Foods facility in San Juan Bautista, Calif., according to the FDA report. Testing at the facility found no samples that matched the outbreak strain. Mandatory oversight?Acheson said the FDA is holding three hearings on issues surrounding tainted produce. He said though good agricultural practices and marketing agreements are the best ways to keep E coli out of produce in the short term, information may come out of the hearings that could build a case for mandatory federal oversight. The outbreak, which occurred in early fall, sickened 205 people and caused three deaths. The spinach grower was marketing products for conventional sale, but the field was being changed into an organic growing area, the report said. Jeff Farrar, food and drug chief of the California Department of Health Services (CDHS), said at a press conference today that the fertilizer used on the field was heat-treated chicken manure pellets. Jan 26 CIDRAP News article “California debates produce safety measures” Reilly said California growers are taking a good first step by signing on to marketing agreements that will be administered by the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA). Food handlers and producers who join the CFDA marketing agreements vow to accept products only from farmers that follow specific food safety procedures. Products certified by state-authorized inspectors and grown with good agricultural practices can carry an official seal to assure consumers.center_img Investigators traced the product code to four fields in Monterey and San Benito counties, the report says. Though E coli O157:H7 was found in environmental samples on all of the farms, samples that matched the outbreak strain were limited to one farm: the Paicines Ranch in San Benito County. Kevin Reilly, deputy director for prevention services at the CDHS, said that though the 6-month investigation wasn’t able to determine how the E coli got onto the spinach, it was still a success. “This is the first time we’ve found a clear link between an individual with a contaminated product and taken that link down to the farm level,” he said. “In real time, we saw evidence of some of the risk factors coming to fruition.” About 90% of California’s fresh produce companies have expressed an interest in joining the marketing agreement, the details of which are still being formulated, Reilly said. “Industry self-regulation seldom protects consumers and often provides industry with cover when contamination occurs,” she said in her statement. “Simply put, if the leafy green industry ever hopes to regain consumer trust, it must be regulated by an authority other than itself.” The multifaceted problems identified by the investigation point to an urgent need for more research on the microbial ecology of E coli, said David Acheson, MD, chief medical officer for the FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition. “We need to find out how the bugs get onto the produce in the first place and how we can prevent that from happening in the future,” he said. Mar 23 FDA press release Elisa Odabashian, director of the Consumers Union’s West Coast office, spoke at the FDA hearing held in Oakland, Calif., on Mar 20. In her comments, posted on the Consumers Union Web site, Odabashian said the marketing agreements taking shape in California lack public input and are heavily influenced by the leafy-greens industry. Consumers Union statement Industry signs on for voluntary changesThe way to reduce the risk of E coli contamination in spinach and other fresh greens is for farms to uniformly adopt established good agricultural practices, Reilly said. “Every farm, every day,” he stressed, adding that food processors must follow good manufacturing practices.last_img read more

ZTT Delivers 500kV AC Subsea Cable Project

first_imgRecently, ZTT Submarine Cable (ZTTSC) completed the factory test and delivery of 500kV AC submarine cable for the second-circuit transmission line project for Zhejiang Zhoushan Networking North Passage.The leaders and experts from Zhejiang Electric Power affiliated to State Grid, China Electric Power Research Institute, State Grid Electric Power Research Institute, State Grid Zhejiang Electric Power Research Institute, Construction Branch of Zhejiang Electric Power of State Grid (consulting company), Zhejiang Qiming Power Group and ZTT Group witnessed the factory test.ZTTSC achieved continuous production of the second-circuit 500kV submarine cable in 17.4 km, and the product delivery was completed in advance.Delivery of Zhoushan second-circuit 500kV network transmission and transformation project is another milestone in continuous and stable production of large-length & ultra-high voltage submarine cable achieved by ZTTSC.Xue Jianling, the general manager of ZTTSC, said global submarine cable was booming. ZTT would actively participate in the globalization layout of submarine cable, develop the strategy with “systematic and general contracting developments of submarine cable” under the guidance of Chinese strategy on the acceleration on the construction of the maritime power, and provide all-around supports and services in the fields of AC and DC submarine cable transmission technology, construction of offshore wind power project, system integration service as well as cooperation and development of wind power resource.last_img read more

GRFU to participate in Las Vegas 7s U-18 tournament next year

first_imgTHE Guyana Rugby Football Union (GRFU) is inviting players, born between January 2000 and December 2001, to register with the union in order to vie for selection for next year’s Las Vegas 7s U-18 tournament.The tournament, set for April of 2018, will serve as a qualifying event for Youth Olympic Games in Argentina.According to the GRFU, Rugby Americas North (RAN) and games global governing body, World Rugby, will be assisting with 50% of the team’s airfare to the Las Vegas 7s.“With the age group being 17-18 years of age, the union hopes to attract more students to the exciting sport and more so encourage them to engage Rugby, which is an option in the Physical Education and Sport syllabus (effective for examinations from May, June 2014)” the GRFU said in a release.Guyana’s ‘Green Machine’ are the Caribbean’s most decorated 7s team, and had featured prominently at the world stage, playing against the likes of New Zealand, France, Australia and other IRB World Series.The GRFU stated that most of the players who featured in the Green Machine came from its U-19 Schools Programme.Since the debut of Rugby Sevens to the Olympics in Rio last year, greater emphasis has been placed on marketing the seven-a-side version of the Rugby as an Olympic sport with the International Olympic Committee’s decision to retain all 28 sports that featured at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games programme.last_img read more