Jan 12, 2021
By Naomi Thomas, CNN
Summary from CNN website: "A common parasite people get from contaminated water and undercooked meat may be associated with rare brain cancers, researchers reported Monday.
They found evidence that people infected with Toxoplasma gondii, or T. gondii, have a higher risk of developing rare but highly fatal gliomas.
The parasite can sometimes form cysts in the brain and the inflammation associated with these cysts might be responsible, the researchers reported in the International Journal of Cancer."
Click here to read the article on the CNN website
Dec 1, 2020
A Message from Barb Kowalcyk, the Director of the Center for Foodborne Illness Research and Prevention:
On December 10th, my son Kevin Kowalcyk should be celebrating his 22nd birthday, but he isn't. In 2001, at age 2 1/2, Kevin became one of the estimated 3,000 people to die each year in the United States from foodborne illness (Kevin’s story). For the past nineteen years, I have devoted my career to preventing others from getting sick or dying from contaminated food and promoting stronger food safety policies and practices that protect public health. To advance these efforts, I co-founded the Center for Foodborne Illness Research and Prevention (CFI) in 2006 with my mom, Pat Buck. In 2017, we moved CFI to The Ohio State University where I am faculty. At the same time, we started an endowment for CFI to ensure it’s long-term sustainability.
As you may be aware, today is Giving Tuesday – “a global generosity movement to unleash the power of people to transform their communities and the world” (www.givingtuesday.org). In honor of Kevin’s 22nd birthday, we launched a crowdfunding campaign for CFI through OSU this morning: https://buckeyefunder.osu.edu/CFI. Funds raised will go towards CFI’s endowment and will support our efforts to transform communities and the world by improving food safety and preventing unnecessary illnesses and deaths from foodborne disease. Throughout the campaign – which ends December 31 – I will be highlighting the great work we have done over the past year.
Please consider sharing this campaign with your social networks and/or making a donation to the campaign. Our goal is to raise $5,000 – last year we raised over $8,000 but understand that things are quite different this year. We would greatly appreciate any support you can provide – even $5 makes a difference! Together we can support CFI’s mission to advance a more scientific, risk-based food safety system that prevents these illnesses and protects public health by translating science into policy and practice – and transform the world.
Dec 1, 2020
CDC, public health and regulatory officials in several states, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are investigating several multistate outbreaks of E. coli O157:H7 infections. This outbreak is different from two other E. coli O157:H7 outbreaks CDC is currently investigating (E. coli outbreak with unknown source 1 and E. coli outbreak with unknown source 3).
Since the last update on October 28, 2020, 16 ill people were added to this investigation.
As of November 19, 2020, a total of 39 people infected with the outbreak strain of E. coli O157:H7 have been reported from 18 states. A list of the states and the number of cases in each can be found on the Map of Reported Cases page.
Click here to read the full article.
Nov 16, 2020
The FDA has proposed a new rule that lays the foundation for the end-to-end food traceability across the food industry that we’ll be working toward over the next decade as part of the New Era of Smarter Food Safety initiative. When we say traceability, what we are really talking about is the ability to track a food at every step of the supply chain. While limited to certain foods, this proposed rule would create a first-of-its-kind standardized approach to traceability recordkeeping, paving the way for industry to adopt and leverage more digital, tech-enabled traceability systems both in the near term and the future. (summary from FDA website)
To read the entire announcement, click here.
Nov 4, 2020
Barb Kowalcyk, the Director of the Center for Foodborne Illness Research and Prevention, will be one of the featured speakers.
Date: November 19, 2020
Time: 9:00-10:30am EST
Summary: Human and animal health are tightly linked: Foodborne pathogens and parasites are persistent public health hazards, and an estimated 60% of human pathogens and 75% of emerging diseases originate from animals according to a recent report by the UN Environment Programme and ILRI. The Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Food Safety leverages research and expertise in food safety, food production, nutrition, and international development to identify the root causes of foodborne illness within supply chains. The second installment in our webinar series explores how a One Health approach to food safety in meat production can reduce, manage, and mitigate risks to animal and human health.
Registration Link: https://cornell.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_qniDxFvbTVOY9KlFDbIJIA?_ga=2.141735483.849150179.1604500284-357853406.1602163706
Oct 22, 2020
By News Desk on October 20, 2020
COLUMBUS, Ohio—A new endowed fund to support food safety has been established thanks to a $100,000 gift from Bill Marler and Marler Clark LLP PS, The Food Safety Law Firm.
The gift, presented to The Ohio State University College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES) Oct. 1, brings the fund’s total to $169,863 and establishes it as a permanent endowment for The Center for Foodborne Illness Research and Prevention (CFI).
Click here to read the whole article: https://www.foodsafetynews.com/2020/10/100000-gift-to-cfaes-to-support-food-safety/
Oct 22, 2020
Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Food Safety has released information about an upcoming webinar that they are hosting.
Webinar: Harnessing Food Safety to Address Global Food Security
Date: October 28, 2020
Time: 9:00-10:00am EDT
Summary: Without food safety, there is no food security. Strengthening local capacity in food safety has untapped potential to break cycles of disease and malnutrition, support well-nourished communities, and generate economic opportunity through increased access to export markets. The Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Food Safety leverages research and expertise in food safety, food production, nutrition, and international development to identify the root causes of foodborne illness within supply chains. The first webinar in this series will explore how data-driven food safety policy and practices can transform food systems and promote global food security.
Registration Link: https://ag.purdue.edu/food-safety-innovation-lab/events/
Oct 6, 2020
Please join us in congratulating Aaron Beczkiewicz, an FST doctoral candidate in our research group, on being named one of four FSIS ORISE Graduate Student Food Safety Fellows. During his fellowship, he will be learning how to apply scientific and technical knowledge to inform FSIS decision making, communicate data to broad audiences, and collaborate with interdisciplinary teams to inform policy and processes that improve the safety of the food supply.
Sep 21, 2020
The CDC has released an article examining STEC outbreaks linked to leafy greens during 2009–2018 in the United States and Canada.
Original article: https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/eid/article/26/10/pdfs/19-1418.pdf
Synopsis: Shiga toxin–producing Escherichia coli (STEC) cause substantial and costly illnesses. Leafy greens are the second most common source of foodborne STEC O157 outbreaks. We examined STEC outbreaks linked to leafy greens during 2009–2018 in the United States and Canada. We identified 40 outbreaks, 1,212 illnesses, 77 cases of hemolytic uremic syndrome, and 8 deaths. More outbreaks were linked to romaine lettuce (54%) than to any other type of leafy green. More outbreaks occurred in the fall (45%) and spring (28%) than in other seasons. Barriers in epidemiologic and traceback investigations complicated identification of the ultimate outbreak source. Research on the seasonality of leafy green outbreaks and vulnerability to STEC contamination and bacterial survival dynamics by leafy green type are warranted. Improvements in traceability of leafy greens are also needed. Federal and state health partners, researchers, the leafy green industry, and retailers can work together on interventions to reduce STEC contamination.
Sep 17, 2020
The FDA article can be found at: https://www.fda.gov/food/cfsan-constituent-updates/fda-and-osha-team-publish-checklist-assist-food-industry-dur