Denmark reports Shiga toxin producing E.coli outbreak, source yet to be identified

DENMARK – Officials in Denmark are investigating a deadly outbreak of Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) O157 that began in December 2021 affecting more than a dozen people. Since early December, 13 patients have been detected and samples from nine of those sick are closely related after an analysis by whole genome sequencing at the Statens Serum Institut, a Danish sector research institute. This means they were likely infected by a common source. Nine people have been hospitalized and an elderly patient has died. Among those sick are three children…

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USDA announces recall of Interstate Meat Distributors’ grounded beef

U.S – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s  (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) has announced the recall of approximately 28,356 pounds of ground beef products by Interstate Meat Distributors Inc., a meat processing company located in Clackamas, Ore, United States, that may be contaminated with E. coli O157:H7 The recall occurred after Consumer Reports’ tests found the  deadly strain of E. coli in a package of Kroger-branded meat produced by the company. Consumer Reports (CR), formerly Consumers Union, is an American nonprofit consumer organization dedicated to independent product testing,…

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FDA investigates multistate outbreak of Listeria linked to Dole packaged salad

U.S – The Food and Drug Administration (FDA), along with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state and local partners, is working to investigate a multistate outbreak of Listeria monocytogenes infections potentially linked with the consumption of Dole packaged salad. Dole packaged salad is manufactured by Dole Food Company, an American agricultural multinational corporation. The company is the largest producer of fruits and vegetables in the world, operating with 74,300 full-time and seasonal employees who are responsible for over 300 products in 90 countries. Dole voluntarily ceased…

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Tanzania’s agricultural scientists detect Banana bunchy top disease in country

TANZANIA – Tanzania’s agricultural scientists have raised an alarm over a deadly banana disease recently detected in the country that can reduce banana production by up to 90 percent as infected plants will be severely stunted. This was after DNA samples from banana plants with typical Banana bunchy top disease symptoms from Buhigwe district in Kigoma region tested positive. According to the researchers, this is the first time that BBTV has been detected in Tanzania and the East African region. “BBTV or Babuvirus is considered among the most devastating banana…

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Pioneer Foods detects Salmonella in its Safari brands products, recalls products

SOUTH AFRICA – South African based Pioneer Foods has initiated the recall of a specific batch of Raw Cashew nuts, Peanuts & Raisins sold under its Safari brand in South Africa, Botswana and Namibia due to Salmonella contamination. According to a company statement, routine testing at the Safari production site in KwaZulu-Natal, identified a batch of the product which tested positive for low levels of Salmonella typhimurium. The company revealed that based on safety protocols, production was immediately halted, the product placed on hold and ringfenced. The production site was…

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CDC declares seafood related Salmonella outbreak over

U.S – The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has declared the culmination of the multistate Salmonella outbreak it was looking into alongside the U.S Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and other state and local partners. The investigations linked the Salmonella Thompson infections to seafood manufactured or processed by Northeast Seafood Products, Inc. of Denver, CO. A total of 115 people infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Thompson were reported from 15 states . The majority of sick people were either Colorado (93) residents or reported traveling to…

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Tomato farmers put on high alert for destructive Tomato brown rugose fruit virus

KENYA – Africa’s tomato farmers have been urged to be on red alert for the Tomato brown rugose fruit virus (ToBRFV) that has been causing mayhem in most tomato-growing countries. Speaking during African Seed Trade Association (AFSTA) Congress this year, Dr. Isaac Macharia, General Manager, Phytosanitary Services at the Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service (KEPHIS), said countries in Africa are encouraged to report the occurrence of the disease to ensure other countries prepare. He said the virus is more severe on young tomato plants and can result in 30-70% yield…

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Malaysia records nationwide decline in food poisoning cases

MALAYSIA – The Malaysian Ministry of Health has reported a nationwide decline in the number of food poisoning cases recording 123 cases till September 2021 compared to 288 cases over the same period in the previous year. The Health Minister, Khairy Jamaluddin, said although the situation is under control, the ministry will continue to implement various promotional activities and interventions to improve the level of food safety and prevent food poisoning to protect the people. “Food safety is something that must not be taken lightly. Productivity can be increased through…

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Food Standard Australia, New Zealand recalls Coffin Bay Oysters

AUSTRALIA – The Food Standard Australia and New Zealand (FSANZ) has recalled more than 2.5 million Coffin Bay’s raw Pacific oysters (Magallana gigas) including fresh and frozen products, following a bacterial outbreak caused by environmental conditions. The recall is for 4 September to 16 November, with the South Australian Department of Health and Wellbeing (DHW) reporting 56 cases of people falling ill and three people hospitalized. “This recall is an additional safety measure on top of the precautionary closure of the Coffin Bay Growing Area recently imposed by the Department…

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Diagnostic experts trained to detect invasive Mango Mealy-bug pest

EASTERN AFRICA – The Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service (KEPHIS), regulatory agency responsible for assurance on the quality of agriculture inputs and produce, are training 18 diagnostic experts from the nine countries that comprise the FAO Eastern Africa sub-region, to detect a new invasive mealy-bug pest that has arrived in the Eastern Africa sub region, called the Mango Mealy- bug. This is in collaboration with the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the Natural History Museum, London, UK and the Centre of Phytosanitary Excellence (COPE). According to experts, the introduction of…

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