Category Archives: microbial contamination

USA- Romaine in the cross-hairs – FDA to test lettuce for pathogens

Food Poison Journal

The FDA is conducting a small, focused assignment to collect samples of raw agricultural commodity (RAC) romaine lettuce to test for Salmonella spp. and pathogenic Escherichia coli (also known as Shiga Toxin-producing E. coli or STEC), microbial hazards repeatedly linked to foodborne illnesses associated with romaine lettuce consumption. The assignment begins this month (November 2019) and is expected to last one year.

USA -Quest Beef Cat Food Recalled For Possible Salmonella

Food Poisoning Bulletin

Go Raw, LLC is recalling its 2 pound frozen bags of Quest Beef Cat Food for possible Salmonella contamination. No illnesses have been reported to date in connection with this issue.

The Quest Beef Cat Food is sold in 2 pound bags, and has the UPC number UPC 6-91730-17101-8 with lot number N128. The Minnesota Department of Agriculture took a sample of the product and tested it for Salmonella; it tested positive.

The firm conducted its own test and it was negative. But, Salmonella may not be evenly distributed throughout the cat food, which is typical, which explains the discrepancy.

Sweden -Sweden reports increase in Cryptosporidium, most in Stockholm

Outbreak News Today crypto

Swedish health officials, aka Folkhalsomyndigheten have reported an increase in the parasitic infection, cryptosporidiosis in recent weeks, particularly in November.

About half of the country’s regions have reported cases in all ages, but primarily in adults. Most cases are seen in the Stockholm region.

The Public Health Agency and the National Food Agency have started an outbreak investigation to identify if there are one or more common sources of infection that are unknown so far. As part of the investigation, cases are interviewed about what they ate and drank before they became ill.

USA -Outbreak of Listeria Infections Linked to Deli-Sliced Meats and Cheeses


This investigation is over. This outbreak is a reminder that deli products, such as sliced meats and cheeses, can have Listeria bacteria. People who are at higher risk for Listeria infection should avoid eating hot dogs, lunch meats, cold cuts, and other deli meats, unless they are heated to an internal temperature of 165°F or until steaming hot just before serving.

CDC and several states, along with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, investigated a multistate outbreak of Listeria infections linked to deli-sliced meats and cheeses. A single, common supplier of deli products was not identified.

Canada – Food Recall Warning – Farm Boy brand cheese balls recalled due to Listeria monocytogenes


Ottawa, November 17, 2019 – Farm Boy is recalling Farm Boy brand cheese balls from the marketplace due to possible Listeria monocytogenes contamination. Consumers should not consume the recalled products described below.

Recalled product

Brand Product Size UPC Codes
Farm Boy Cheese Ball Trio – Fiesta, Cranberry Pecan, Bacon Cheddar and/or “FB Cheese Ball Trio” 360 g Starting with 0 238211 All units sold up to and including November 17, 2019
Farm Boy “FB Blue Cheese & Walnut Ball” 180 g Starting with 0 238274 All units sold up to and including November 17, 2019
Farm Boy Cranberry Pecan Cheese Ball and/or “FB Cran Pecan Cheese Ball” 180 g 8 08912 00884 4 or Starting with 0 232337 All units sold up to and including November 17, 2019
Farm Boy Fiesta Cheese Ball and/or Farm Boy Fiesta Cheese Ball 180 g 8 08912 00883 7 or Starting with 0 238283 All units sold up to and including November 17, 2019
Farm Boy “FB Wht Choc Pecan Cran Ball” 180 g Starting with 0 238275 All units sold up to and including November 17, 2019
Farm Boy Bacon Cheddar Cheese Ball and/or “FB Bacon Chedd. Cheese Ball” 180 g 8 08912 00885 1 or Starting with 0 238284 All units sold up to and including November 17, 2019


There have been no reported illnesses associated with the consumption of these products.

Product photos

Printer ready version of photos

  • Farm Boy Cheese Ball Trio – 360 grams (side)
  • Farm Boy Cheese Ball Trio – 360 grams (outer label)
  • Farm Boy Cheese Ball Trio – 360 grams (UPC)
  • Farm Boy Cheese Ball – 180 grams (pre-printed labels)
  • Farm Boy Cheese Ball – 180 grams (store-printed labels)

Research – Decontamination of Bacillus cereus in cardamom (Elettaria cardamomum) seeds by infrared radiation and modeling of microbial inactivation through experimental models

Wiley Online 

In this work, infrared (IR) irradiation was used for inactivation of Bacillus cereus in cardamom seeds. The effect of IR power (100, 200, and 300 W), sample distance from radiation source (5, 10, and 15 cm) and holding times (0–11 min) was investigated on B. cereus count, as well as cardamom seeds color and temperature profiles. Inactivation of B. cereus on cardamom seeds during IR processing was demonstrated by experimental models. The highest reduction of B. cereus count (5.11 Log CFU/g) was achieved after 8 min IR irradiation at 300 W power and 15 cm distance. Measurement of temperature profiles revealed that there was a significant difference (p < .05) between surface and center temperatures of the cardamom seeds. The green color (a* value) of cardamom seeds was slightly affected and the highest color change was observed at 200 W IR, 10 cm distance and 10 min irradiation that resulted in an increase of a* from −3.05 ± 0.96 to −0.05 ± 0.44. In conclusion, IR irradiation could be successful for decontamination of cardamom seeds without severe alteration of its quality. Among the experimental models for microbial inactivation during IR processing, the Double Weibull model had the highest coefficient value of determination (R2 = 0.9966).

Research -Occurrence of Campylobacter spp., Salmonella spp. and shiga toxin‐producing Escherichia coli in inline milk filters from Swedish dairy farms

Wiley Online


This study investigated the occurrence of shiga toxin‐producing Escherichia coli (STEC), thermotolerant Campylobacter spp. and Salmonella spp. in Swedish dairy milk. A total of 302 inline milk filters were analyzed. Salmonella was not isolated from any filters. Polymerase chain reaction screening detected thermotolerant Campylobacter in 30.5% of the milk filters analyzed and it was isolated from 12.6% of filters. The stx genes (stx 1stx 2, or both) were screened from 71% of the filters and STEC was isolated from 14% of these. Of the STEC isolates, 21 contained the stx 1 gene, 19 the stx 2 gene, and five a combination of both stx 1 and stx 2 genes. Whole genome sequence typing on 34 of the 45 STEC showed that they belonged to 21 different serotypes, of which STEC O145:H28 was the most common (2%). STEC O157:H7 was only found from one (0.3%) of the filters. A combination of stx 2 and eae genes was found from 0.7% of the total number of inline milk filters analyzed, while stx 2a was found in 24% of the whole genome‐sequenced isolates. There was a significant positive correlations between number of animals per farm and presence of pathogens on milk filters.