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Food Policy and Safety Feed

July 03, 2008

Beef recall: Kroger, QFC, Fred Meyer

Just in time for the 4th, Kroger has announced a recall for hamburger purchased between May 21-July 5. You know the deal, e. coli, yadda, yadda. Why it is dated for the meat sold in the future, I don't know. Details below:

Cincinnati-based Kroger is recalling ground beef products in plastic foam tray packages wrapped in cellophane, or purchased from a service counter at all Fred Meyer's and QFC stores between May 21-July 5. The first 6 digits of the UPCs for the effected products are:

  • 241659 and 241661 for lean ground beef 20%
  • 271665 and 271670 for extra lean ground beef 15%
  • 241670 and 241676 for leanest ground beef 7%
  • 231677 for Laura’s Lean Ground Beef 4% fat.

Chef’s Express items:

  • meatballs with the first 6 digits of the UPC 291196
  • meatloaf 291091
  • meatloaf with spinach 291297
  • stuffed peppers 291119
  • beef mushroom burgers 291306.

(KOMO: QFC, Fred Meyer issueground beef recall)

March 18, 2008

The clueless feeding the blind

Everywhere you look there is a new horror about food consuming the mainstream media 24/7 showing up at a site like Grist, The Ethicurean or any of a thousand other excellent web sites that talk about food.My outrage for today is this article, Meat Wagon: Cow-feed misdeeds, in which Tom Philpott explores the use of distillers  grains, generated as waste when making ethanol from corn, as livestock feed.

Apparently distillers grains shares the bounty of problems it brings: it can increase the risk of e. coli 0157 (bad for us), cause sulfur toxicity (bad for the cows), and dramatically increase levels of phosphorous in the ground and water (bad for the environment). It's not a small problem either, the US ethanol industry created 10 million tons of distillers grains last year, with most (75-80%) being fed to cows. That number is expected to continue rising, especially since without selling the spent grain as feed, ethanol seems to be unprofitable. Even with all the subsidies.

Continue reading "The clueless feeding the blind" »

February 22, 2008

Hallmark Meat: Not so total recall

...in which the Hallmark Meat 'recall' gets watered down. Even more.

I am really trying to wrap my brain around something and not having much luck. Read this and tell me what I am missing.

"If a processor or grinder has records demonstrating that products were produced using less than 100% of recalled Westland meat for the meat component, then there is no need...to retrieve that 'commingled' product,"  Beef Industry Presses For Reduced Recall - WSJ.com

Continue reading "Hallmark Meat: Not so total recall" »

January 31, 2008

Are you supposed to waterboard cows?

There is a lot of buzz on the 'net today about the video that the Humane Society took inside Hallmark Meat Packing, where workers are shown abusing downer cows as a means of getting their sick carcasses to the slaughter line. The video is sad, disgusting, and when you consider that this company is a major supplier for school lunches, downright scary. (link: Video of animal abuse at Hallmark Meat packing - be warned it is graphic)

Continue reading "Are you supposed to waterboard cows?" »

August 29, 2007

Waiter, there's salmonella in my spinach!

Step away from the spinach and nobody gets hurt!

If it's August, there must be a recall of fresh vegetables and, not surprisingly, this week's candidate is: spinach.

Metz Fresh, which packages spinach in California for distribution across the US, is recalling bags of spinach after one sample tested positive for salmonella.

How do I know? Darned good question. It's not at Metz's site, where they advertise "spinach like nowhere else TM" (really? lots of spinach seems to get contaminated so wouldn't this be 'spinach  like far too many places'?). Even their quality food safety page lacks a reference to the recall. It's not at the Food and Drug Administration site either. (How is it that neither of these places has data?)

While looking for the FDA's information on the spinach recall I did come across the page where they list recent recalls. All I can say is WTF?

Read the rest of the kitchenMage's Apprentice: How safe is your dinner? at Gather.com.(Not a Gather member? click here to join.)

April 04, 2006

NAIS Informational meeting

(grok'd from the Gray's River Grange site)

There's been a bit of information floating around lately about the National Animal Identification System (NAIS), a new program of the USDA.From the USDA website:   

“As part of its ongoing efforts to safeguard U.S. animal health, USDA initiated the implementation of the National Animal Identification System (NAIS) in 2004. NAIS is a cooperative State-Federal-industry partnership to standardize and expand animal identification programs and practices to all livestock species and poultry. NAIS is being developed through the integration of three components—premises identification, animal identification, and animal tracking. The long-term goal of the NAIS is to provide animal health officials with the capability to identify all livestock and premises that have had direct contact with a disease of concern within 48 hours after discovery.”

It sounds good on paper, but it raises some significant red flags in my mind, seeming to place a huge logistical and financial burden on small farmers. Farmgirl has been talking to me about it in mail recently and she pointed me at NONAIS, a portal for all things NAIS (Yes, they have a position, but you could tell that from the name, right?)

Carrie Kennedy, our local WSU Extension Agent, will be hosting a meeting at the Grays River Grange on May 9th at 7:30 pm to talk about NAIS and answer questions that you may have about how it will impact you. The grange hall is at the west end of the hamlet of Grays River on SR 4. Hope to see you there.

July 24, 2005

the ethics of free recipes

As I was perusing this mornng's updated flogs, I stumbled across someone raving about Google Print. (Find it if you are interested, I am not supporting them by making it easy to find them. I'm also not linking to the blog where I found it because I like her writing and this isn't about her.) For those of you unfamiliar with the "service" being offered by Google, it takes the full text of published books and makes them available free online. Sounds pretty cool, huh?

Well, it depends on who you are.

Continue reading "the ethics of free recipes" »

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