Articles Posted in Food Poisoning

No one wants to receive a “Dear John” letter, but on October 22, 2013, thousands of animal doctors across the country received a “Dear Veterinarian” letter from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). It asked the practitioners to help them solve the mystery of pet poisoning by jerky treats.

Keeping Our Pets Safe
For years, the FDA has received reports that some pets became ill after consuming jerky treats, and they have conducted laboratory investigations, without success, to determine the cause. The agency has already tested 1,200 samples without discovering the exact cause of any illnesses. And the number of reported illnesses is growing. As of September 24, 2013, the FDA had been advised of 3,600 dogs and 10 cats who were sickened, apparently by the treats; 580 of these pets died.

A New York State Department of Agriculture and Marketing study found low levels of antibiotic residues in some jerky pet treats, and several well-known brands were subsequently removed from the market in January 2013. The FDA is doing its own evaluation to determine the possibility that low levels of antibiotics can cause illness in dogs when fed over a length of time. But this is just one potential cause they are investigating.

In early February, Harold Food Co. of North Carolina recalled 1,200 pounds of chicken salad due to fears of Listeria contamination. The recall heavily affected South Carolina stores, with potentially contaminated products pulled from shelves in Allendale, Beaufort, Bishopville, Brunson, Charleston, Cheraw, Chesterfield, Columbia and Conway.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has warned that the contamination, which came from hard-boiled eggs, could still make its way to consumers. It has issued warnings in more than 34 states, including South Carolina.

The batches of eggs may have been exposed to bacteria because of repairs that took place in the packaging area of a Michael Foods factory in Nebraska, according to that company’s statement. The initial recalls happened in late January, when officials thought the impact of the exposure was much smaller. The recalls quickly expanded as officials traced the path of eggs throughout the country.

A random test found salmonella in bagged salads sold in South Carolina. The company responsible, Taylor Farms Retail, Inc, is recalling 3,265 affected bags marketed under the brands Fresh Selections, HEB, Marketside, and Taylor Farms.

If you have a bagged salad under any of those brands with a sell-by date of Oct. 18 to 21, throw it away or return it to your supermarket.

The salmonella was found by Washington State’s Department of Agriculture. Washington conducts tests on produce and other products sold in within its state no matter the origin. In this case, Taylor Farms Retail is based out of California and has also sold salad products in Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Kentucky, Missouri, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Texas, Virginia, Washington and Puerto Rico.

R.L. Zeigler Co., Inc in Selma, Alabama has issued a recall on approximately 28,610 pounds of hot dog products that may be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes. Listeria monocytogenes can cause listeriosis which can be fatal for people with weak immune systems, infants, and the elderly. It can also cause miscarriages and stillbirths.

Symptoms include high fever, neck stiffness, severe headache, nausea, confusion, and convulsions. The products related in the Zeigler recall are as follows:

* “ZEIGLER WIENERS MADE WITH CHICKEN AND PORK, ARTIFICIALLY COLORED”: 12-ounce packages, with each package bearing the use-by date of “Nov. 26, 2008 and establishment number “P-9156S” within the USDA mark of inspection.

Responding to concerns that food labels aren’t doing enough to alert consumers to the presence of allergens, or that the labels are just plain confusing, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration hosted a public hearing Sept. 16 on what it can do to improve things.

The hearings are part of a “long-term strategy” on the part of the FDA to help manufacturers upgrade their labeling practices, making them both clear and truthful.

If you or someone you care about has been seriously injured or killed by someone else’s careless attitude toward food safety, you have the right to hold the careless party responsible in court. With almost 50 years of experience, the Louthian Law Firm can help you evaluate your case and file a lawsuit if the facts warrant one. To preserve your right to a day in court, contact one of our experienced South Carolina foodborne illness attorneys as soon as possible, at 1-866-410-5656, for a free case evaluation.

The latest in the litany of voluntary food recalls was announced on Saturday, November 3rd, when General Mills recalled nearly 5 million pizzas after an investigation by federal and state regulators found that the pepperoni topping likely caused several E.Coli related illnesses.

Totino’s and Jeno’s brand pizzas sold between mid-July and mid-October were found to cause illness in 21 people in 10 states. At least eight people were hospitalized with the foodborne illness, E.Coli, which can cause bloody diarrhea and abdominal cramps lasting a few days on average. Four of the victims have developed kidney failure, according to a Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention statement.

“Eating a Totino’s or Jeno’s brand pizza containing pepperoni was significantly associated with illness.” According to the CDC statement.

7.5 ounce packages of Kroger Smoked Salmon Dip were recalled recently after Georgia inspectors found deadly bacteria in the product’s packaging, according to an Associated Press report.

The product recall affected the states of South Carolina, Georgia, Ohio, Indiana and North Carolina. The package markings read: “Use By 04 Nov. 2007A LN3”. Kroger officials have asked people to look at the code date on any packages they bought and if it matches the code date above, they should bring it back to their Kroger store for a full refund.

South Carolina Food recalls can be some of the scariest and most wide ranging of product recalls. In this instance, the packaging for the salmon dip contained the bacterium Listeria monocytogenes, which can cause the disease listeriosis. Listeriosis has been known to cause miscarriage, stillbirth, and premature birth in pregnant women. The company that packaged the product is called House of Thaller Inc., of Knoxville, Tenn. Ironically, Tennessee was not one of the main areas that the recall affected.

Barely days after New Jersey-based Topps Meat Company recalled 21.7 million pounds of E. Coli-contaminated ground beef, Cargill Inc. is doing the same, recalling 840,000 pounds of ground beef patties distributed at Sam’s Club stores across the country, which they say are contaminated with E. Coli bacteria. According to an article posted in The State , the recall came after four Minnesota children were sickened by the bacteria after consuming the tainted products.

Two of the children who became ill as a result of the contaminated beef had to be hospitalized, and one still remains in the hospital, according to the news report. All the children became ill between Sept. 10 and Sept. 20, the article stated. The recalled packages were reportedly manufactured on Aug. 9, 10, 15, 16 and 17 and bear the number “Est. 924A” inside the USDA inspection mark. Also, a majority of the contaminated products were the American Chef’s Selection Angus Beef Patties.

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Fifty-two students and six employees at The Midlands Math and Business Academy either did not come to school or left early due to illness on Thursday according to an Associated Press report published Friday, September 28th. The students and employees reported suffering from diarrhea, cramping and vomiting.

As of Friday, 25 of the Richland County Charter School students were still absent. The fourth through eighth grade school has no cafeteria but students do eat delivered meals in their classrooms. None of the other schools served by that kitchen are reporting mass absences.

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A massive, nationwide beef recall has driven New Jersey-based Topps Meat Co. out of business, but government scientists are still scratching their heads when it comes to pinpointing the source of the E. Coli bacteria that contaminated the company’s ground beef, which reportedly made 32 people ill.

According to an article in The State , even after the company shut down putting 87 people out of their jobs, the investigation goes on. The only information we know is the U.S. Agriculture Department’s finding that Topps’ plant in Elizabeth, N.J., lacked adequate food safety measures to prevent the E. Coli contamination.

What has turned out to be the second largest beef recall in this country’s history – a whopping 21.7 million pounds of ground beef — has also led to criticism of the U.S. Agriculture department who many believe should have hastened the recall. USDA officials are now saying that they will speed up such recalls and warnings in the future, which is of course too late for the 32 people across eight states who were sickened by the contaminated beef. No deaths have been reported so far.

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