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Meat, poultry at grocery store contaminated with drug-resistant Staph bacteria

There is more evidence the meat and poultry you purchase at the grocery store is contaminated with food-borne bacteria.
In a new study by the Translational Genomics Research Institute, nearly half of meat and poultry samples taken from stores showed that 47 percent were contaminated with Staphylococcus aureus bacteria.
Among that 47 percent, more than half were contaminated with a Staph bacteria which could not be treated by three classes of antibiotics.
The study, according to a report, is published in the most recent edition of Clinical Infectious Diseases. This is the first study of antibiotic resistance of Staph. aureus in the U.S. food supply.
Researchers with TGen identified the farm animals which produce the meat as the main source of the Staph contamination.
Staph bacteria is killed effectively through proper cooking methods, but in our recent reports on food contamination at the grocery store, packages of food are often found to be contaminated. If a consumer is perusing the meat counter and makes contact with the products, they could spread that contamination – including the Staph bacteria – to other products in the store, including those which needn't be cooked.
For the TGen study, 136 samples were collected on 80 brands of meat and poultry from 26 grocery stores in five cities: L.A., Chicago, Fort Lauderdale, Flagstaff, and Washington, D.C.
Contamination from S. aureus bacteria can lead to pneumonia, endocarditis and sepsis.


From Parker Waichman Alonso LLP
April 19, 2011


Six lesser-known forms of E. coli bacteria garner more attention

Food safety specialists around the world are increasing their testing of a lesser-known group of E. coli bacteria.
According to a release from the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, "the Big Six" other forms of E. coli bacteria are generating more interest among food regulators and producers everywhere.
E. coli O157:H7 is the most common form of E. coli bacteria and is responsible for the recall of thousands of food products each year. Thousands of people will contract E. coli poisoning each year, and the bacteria infection can lead to death.
Researchers at the USDA are close to developing a "user-friendly" test for food inspectors to use on site to test for these lesser-known E. coli bacteria.
USDA scientists report they're "sorting out 'who's who' among these related pathogens so that the microbes can be identified and detected quickly and reliably."
E. coli bacteria is commonly found on meats and vegetables and is typically the product of poor hygiene or safety practices at a food processing facility.
Early symptoms of E. coli poisoning include fever, nausea, diarrhea and vomiting.

From Parker Waichman Alonso LLP
April 15, 2011




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