An outbreak of illness linked to consumption of tainted ricotta salata cheese has been linked to 3 deaths and 14 hospitalizations in 11 states, according to a release on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's website.
The outbreak - blamed on the bacteria Listeria monocytogenes - is possibly linked to consumption of Frescolina brand ricotta salata from Forever Cheese lot #T9425 and/or production code 441202. The cheese was sold to distributors for retailers and restaurants in California, Colorado, Washington D.C., Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Washington between June 20 and August 9, 2012. The company has issued a voluntary recall.
Alex B. Berezow is the editor of RealClearScience. He holds a Ph.D. in microbiology.
The strain of E. coli that has killed at least 25 people and sickened more than 2,600 others in Europe is a terrifying reminder that killer microbes lurk in places where we least expect them. Though it is not a reason to panic, this incident should force us to rethink some important food safety issues.
One good place to start would be to completely ban the sale of raw milk and juice.
In April, the FDA cracked down on an Amish raw milk producer for selling its product across state lines without proper labeling, both of which are in violation of federal law. This predictably led to cries of "big government" telling people what they can and cannot eat. But given the effects of the deadly microbe that has been creeping across Europe's food supply, the FDA's decision is looking very responsible.
All Sally Jackson Cheeses are being recalled because they may be contaminated with E.coli, the Food and Drug Administration announced Friday.
The cheeses from the company are made from raw cows', goats', and sheep milk. They do not carry labels or bar codes, because they are wrapped in leaves and tied with twine. The cheeses are all soft raw milk cheeses, and were distributed nationwide to restaurants, distributors, and retail stores.
Previous outbreaks have linked E.coli to raw dairy products, according to research.
A stick of butter purchased at a Dallas grocery story contained high levels of a flame retardant used in electronics, according to environmental scientists at the University of Texas School of Public Health.
The butter was contaminated with a chemical called polybrominated diphenyl ether, or PBDE.
"To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of U.S. butter contaminated with PBDEs," said lead research Arnold Schecter, whose study was published Tuesday in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives.
The butter was purchased last year as part of a small research project to test for contaminates. The butter stick's wrapper contained even higher amounts of PBDEs. The source of the contamination remains a mystery.
Read Study: Flame retardant found in small butter sample on CNN Health