Tuesday, March 17, 2009
Food Contamination: Everything You Should Know
By: Robert Sondak
In the three years from 2006 to 2009 there have been three major food- borne illnesses that have taken a toll on the U.S. food system. In 2006, California bagged spinach tested positive for E-Coli; in 2008, the United States Department of Agriculture issued a food advisory on salmonella contamination in tomatoes; in March 2009 the Food and Drug Administration's Center for Nutrition and Food Safety issued a recall of all Peanut Butter Corporation of America peanut butter products due to salmonella. E-Coli, as found in the California spinach in 2006, is a highly toxic bacteria strain that can cause severe food poisoning or death. The E-Coli was found to be a result of growing the spinach in the same region where cattle was farmed. The 2008 finding of salmonella in tomatoes was found to be the result of cross contamination with peppers from Mexico. The FDA website and Whole Foods website have more information on the peanut butter recall and past recalls.