Larry M. Stone Food Safety Advocate


Friday, August 20, 2010


Its amazing the FDA moves to seize contents from a rodent infested warehouse destined to prisons while refusing a recall to stop rodent infested meat products from being shipped nationwide from a prison industry to retail stores ,schools ,hospitals and state institutions.
Double click on headline to go to FDA link on the story.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Food-Borne ills have lasting consequences

Read this report on new findings from the Center for Foodborne illness Research & Prevention in Pennsylvania. This report validates our mission to bring accountability to those manufacturers and governmental agencies who ignored our demands for our recall.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

DeLauro Calls for USDA Investigation into Tainted Beef

Since 2005 we have not only called for investigations into tainted beef but also provided this congresswomen and Georgia congressman Tom Price and Senator Saxby Chambliss documents and affidavits showing the USDA and the State of Florida covered up contaminated facilities in the State of Florida. These representatives may call for investigations but the calls are in a faint whisper and have fallen on deaf ears from all agencies.

Read the silent scream:

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Trail of E. Coli Shows Flaws in Inspection of Ground Beef

You must read this front page article -

What is more sickening then the E: COLI contamination is the use of selective journalism to protect those who should be held accountable, that being governmental organizations and officials. The Times many times has covered up their own investigative reporting and information received from public consumer oversight organizations. Where was the Times when it knew of food contamination and the distribution of contaminated meats in 2005 .What has moved this problem to the front pages now? Again members of congress will write letters and ask for USDA reform to protect the consumer. The USDA will take its sweet time in answering the letters, time will again pass, so very slowly, and more and more consumers will be sickened and those responsible will get a reprieve as the media moves on to the next item to get the attention of the public.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

We welcome Medpedia

We are proud to now have Medpedia and their professional organization associated with our quest for accountability within our food industry.

Monday, July 20, 2009

FDA only tolerates contamination for human food but not animal food products

Why are conditions in Florida food processing facilities allowed contamination and protected from recalls but not animal food manufacturers and distributors ?

Filthy conditions, failure to correct violations prompted action at Kentucky facility
At the request of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, U.S. marshals today seized livestock and horse feeds stored under filthy conditions at the Bi-County Farm Bureau Cooperative Association, Inc., in Florence, Ky.

“The FDA will not tolerate a company’s failure to adequately control and prevent filth in its facility,” said Michael Chappell, the FDA’s acting associate commissioner for regulatory affairs. “The FDA is prepared to use whatever legal means are necessary and appropriate to keep potentially contaminated products out of the marketplace.”

During a recent inspection of the Bi-County feed mill, FDA investigators discovered live and dead mice and evidence of bird activity throughout the facility. FDA laboratory analysis of samples collected during the inspection confirmed the presence of rodent urine, rodent feces, rodent hairs, and rodent-gnawed holes in bags, in and around food products.

Saturday, May 30, 2009



"I have reviewed the Investigative Report submitted to your agency by the Government Accountability Project (GAP) as well as the follow up letters from the USDA denying the request to recall the 16 million pounds of questionable product. It appears,
evidence, including sworn affidavits and photographs have been ignored by the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) with .their repeated denial of facilitating this Recall Request. These photographs alone seem to document the contamination of this warehouse - why has the USDA failed to act in the best interests of our consumers on this effort?"

Now read the comments from the USDA to member of Congress Rosa DeLauro.

"In June 2005, FSIS conducted a comprehensive investigation of the Pride Industries processing plant and found no evidence to substantiate Mr. Stone's allegation that adulterated food product was processed or shipped in commerce by Pride Industries. In June 2005, FSIS conducted a separate !investigation at the Pride warehouse,
a detached off premise facility used to store packaging materials and other items used by Pride Industries. In this case, FSIS did find contamination at the warehouse. As a result, packaging material and breading mix that were
stored in the contaminated warehouse were destroyed under FSIS supervision. The warehouse was voluntarily closed by Pride in 2005".

Now ask yourself why did it take two separate investigations to find the warehouse and why did the USDA not take any action when Pride stated to them that it did not have any knowledge of the existence of the warehouse. Never has the USDA accepted the documents supplied to them showing they were being misled in the investigation.

Why is a double standard allowed by the USDA in this investigation? To divert an investigation should not be tolerated by any agency

Friday, April 10, 2009

Needed Improvement and Accountability

U.S. Food Safety No Longer Improving By GARDINER HARRIS
Published: April 9, 2009
This article should be carefully read it has some interesting comments.
1. The safety of the nation’s food supply has not improved over the past three years.
2. Dr. Robert Tauxe, deputy director of the C.D.C.’s division of food borne diseases, suggested that whatever progress the department had made in improving overall food safety might have been lost by the F.D.A.
3. For a case to be included in FoodNet, someone must become sick enough to see a doctor, the doctor must be concerned or well trained enough to ask for and get a stool sample, and the laboratory to which the doctor sends the sample must be part of the government’s system.
4. Dr. Tim Jones, the state epidemiologist in Tennessee, said many of the easy improvements in the nation’s food-safety system had already been made. “You can only tell people so much to wash their cutting boards and wash their hands,” Dr. Jones said. “I think we’re running out of things to do to make dramatic improvements.”

So the buck passing continues, it is almost impossible for many citizens obtaining a food borne sickness of getting any attention unless it passes the FoodNet obstacle course.

What we have been stating, for some time now, holds true. A manufacturers request, like the ATL request, to have potentially Salmonella contaminated food recalled may very well have had an effect on the stagnation being shown by this report. Our repeated alarm was of little concern to our food safety system, it was of no value to the CDC, FDA, USDA or the State of Florida, all who were contacted and made well aware of this meat contamination and our request for a recall.

All authoritative voices, spokesmen and articles which state that these agencies don’t have the authority to initiate a recall , that it can only be initiated by the distributor or manufacturer, are not stating the facts when considering our out cry and outreach to these agencies and reporters. Let all facts speak for themselves.

Friday, March 20, 2009




Thursday, May 15, 2008

You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time.

click on this Abraham Lincoln quote to see full story.
Lawmaker: Nation's food system is collapsing
By David FitzpatrickCNN
Stanley Painter, who was a USDA inspector for 22 years, says the agency, which oversees food safety and inspection, doesn't allow inspectors to enforce regulations. He says that sometimes, plants fix the problems discovered by inspectors, and sometimes they don't.
By federal law, there are inspectors at each of the nation's slaughterhouses. Painter, who now heads the union that represents inspectors, said that in some parts of the country, there are 20 percent fewer inspectors than there should be. Nationwide, the vacancy figure is just under 11 percent.
"They are telling us to 'let the system work,' " Painter told CNN. "Which means that if you see a problem, stand back and watch and see what the plant is going to do with it."
Responsibility for food regulation is splintered among 15 federal agencies. Some influential lawmakers, like Democratic Rep. Rosa DeLauro of Connecticut, are also concerned. She's among those who believe an independent food inspection agency is needed to protect consumers from food-borne illnesses.
Responsibility for food regulation is splintered among 15 federal agencies. Some influential lawmakers, like Democratic Rep. Rosa DeLauro of Connecticut, are also concerned. She's among those who believe an independent food inspection agency is needed to protect consumers from food-borne illnesses.
"It's never going to be perfect," DeLauro said. "But what we have now is a food system that is collapsing."

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

300 Inmates in Florida get food poisoning "I wonder why"

Food poisoning sickens inmates
More than 300 inmates of the Santa Rosa County Correctional Institution fell ill Saturday
Wendy Victora
Tuesday April 29th, 2008
MILTON – More than 300 inmates at the Santa Rosa County Correctional Institution fell ill Saturday from what authorities suspect was food poisoning.
Of those, 177 required treatment, according to Jo Ellyn Rackleff, public information officer for the Florida Department of Corrections.
“The (Santa Rosa) Health Department took stool cultures from a sampling of the cases to help us determine the source of the outbreak,” she wrote in a press release. “At this time, no determination has been made.”
She said there were no new cases as of Sunday.
There are about 1,400 inmates at the facility.
Martheny Burgess of Crestview had heard from her brother, who is an inmate, that they were “quarantined,” but didn’t know why. He did not become ill.
She called the facility to find out what was going on, because she was concerned about her children, who visited their uncle recently.
On Tuesday morning, she got a message that it was food poisoning.
“I was just glad to find out what was going on,” she said. “I was so worried.”
Rackleff said that during the outbreak, no prisoners were accepted or released. The movement of inmates inside the facility was also restricted.
“Whatever was necessary was done,” Rackleff said.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Listen to Senator Williams and Congresswomen DeLauro

They speak on the problems of contaminated meat and the actions needed
but not taken by the USDA:click on this link.

Thursday, March 27, 2008




U.S.D.A. mulls limiting meat recall information
(, March 27, 2008)by Bryan Salvage
WASHINGTON ― The U.S. Department of Agriculture is considering a proposal to not identify retailers where meat cited in recalls was sold except in cases of potential serious health risks to consumers as it puts the final touches on a proposed disclosure rule, according to The Associated Press.
This proposal had reportedly been in draft form for two years until it was pushed to the front burner in February, when 143 million pounds of beef were recalled by Hallmark/Westland Meat Packing Co. in Chino, Calif.U.S.D.A. spokesman Chris Connelly confirmed yesterday that the agency is trying to decide whether to make identifying the stores mandatory only for Class I recalls, which pose the greatest health hazard. The Hallmark/Westland recall was categorized as Class II because authorities determined there was minimal risk to human health.
Currently, U.S.D.A. only discloses a recall has been issued, but does not list which retailers might have received meat or poultry subject to a given recall. Consumer groups and Democratic lawmakers contend that the public should have access to the names of retailers in all meat recalls. As originally written, the rule would have applied to all meat recalls, AP said.Industry groups support the way recalls are currently done, partly for competitive reasons, where a description of the recalled product is released by U.S.D.A.’s Food Safety and Inspection Service along with other information including where it was produced, AP said. Although retailers must remove recalled meat from their shelves, there is no requirement that they notify customers about meat already sold. Some, however, voluntarily disclose this information.

Saturday, March 15, 2008


Food poisoning can be long-term problem
WASHINGTON (AP) — It's a dirty little secret of food poisoning: E. coli and certain other foodborne illnesses can sometimes trigger serious health problems months or years after patients survived that initial bout.
Scientists only now are unraveling a legacy that has largely gone unnoticed.
What they've spotted so far is troubling. In interviews with the Associated Press, they described high blood pressure, kidney damage, even full kidney failure striking 10 to 20 years later in people who survived severe E. coli infection as children, arthritis after a bout of salmonella or shigella, and a mysterious paralysis that can attack people who just had mild symptoms of campylobacter.
"Folks often assume once you're over the acute illness, that's it, you're back to normal and that's the end of it," said Dr. Robert Tauxe of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The long-term consequences are "an important but relatively poorly documented, poorly studied area of foodborne illness."
These late effects are believed to make up a very small fraction of the nation's 76 million annual food poisonings, although no one knows just how many people are at risk. A bigger question is what other illnesses have yet to be scientifically linked to food poisoning.
And with a rash of food recalls — including more than 30 million pounds of ground beef pulled off the market last year alone — these are questions are taking on new urgency.
"We're drastically underestimating the burden on society that foodborne illnesses represent," contends Donna Rosenbaum of the consumer advocacy group STOP, Safe Tables Our Priority.
Every week, her group hears from patients with health complaints that they suspect or have been told are related to food poisoning years earlier, like a woman who survived severe E. coli at 8 only to have her colon removed in her 20s. Or people who develop diabetes after food poisoning inflamed the pancreas. Or parents who wonder if a child's learning problems stem from food poisoning-caused dialysis as a toddler.
"There's nobody to refer them to for an answer," says Rosenbaum.
So STOP this month is beginning the first national registry of food-poisoning survivors with long-term health problems — people willing to share their medical histories with scientists in hopes of boosting much-needed research.
Consider Alyssa Chrobuck of Seattle, who at age 5 was hospitalized as part of the Jack-in-the-Box hamburger outbreak that 15 years ago this month made a deadly E. coli strain notorious.
She's now a successful college student but ticks off a list of health problems unusual for a 20-year-old: High blood pressure, recurring hospitalizations for colon inflammation, a hiatal hernia, thyroid removal, endometriosis.
"I can't eat fatty foods. I can't eat things that are fried, never been able to eat ice cream or milkshakes," says Chrobuck. "Would I have this many medical problems if I hadn't had the E. coli? Definitely not. But there's no way to tie it definitely back."
The CDC says foodborne illnesses cause 325,000 hospitalizations and 5,000 deaths a year. Among survivors, some long-term consequences are obvious from the outset. Some required kidney transplants. They may have scarred intestines that promise lasting digestive difficulty.
But when people appear to recover, it is difficult to prove that later problems really are a food-poisoning legacy and not some unfortunate coincidence. It may be that people prone to certain gastrointestinal conditions, for instance, also are genetically more vulnerable to germs that cause foodborne illness.
For now, some of the best evidence comes from the University of Utah, which has long tracked children with E. coli. About 10% of E. coli sufferers develop a life-threatening complication called hemolytic uremic syndrome, or HUS, where their kidneys and other organs fail.
Ten to 20 years after they recover, between 30% and half of HUS survivors will have some kidney-caused problem, says Dr. Andrew Pavia, the university's pediatric infectious diseases chief. That includes high blood pressure caused by scarred kidneys, slowly failing kidneys, even end-stage kidney failure that requires dialysis.
"I don't want to leave the message that everyone who had symptoms ... is in trouble," stresses Pavia.
Miserable as E. coli is, it doesn't seem to trigger long-term problems unless it started shutting down the kidneys the first time around, he says. "People with uncomplicated diarrhea, by and large we don't have evidence yet that they have complications."
Other proven long-term consequences:
•About 1 in 1,000 sufferers of campylobacter, a diarrhea-causing infection spread by raw poultry, develop far more serious Guillain-Barre syndrome a month or so later. Their body attacks their nerves, causing paralysis that usually requires intensive care and a ventilator to breathe. About a third of the nation's Guillain-Barre cases have been linked to previous campylobacter, even if the diarrhea was very mild, and they typically suffer a more severe case than patients who never had food poisoning.
While they eventually recover, "We don't know a great deal about what happens to those people five years later. What does 'normal' look like?" Tauxe says.
•A small number of people develop what's called reactive arthritis six months or longer after a bout of salmonella. It causes joint pain, eye inflammation, sometimes painful urination, and can lead to chronic arthritis. Certain strains of shigella and yersinia bacteria, far more common abroad than in the U.S., trigger this reactive arthritis, too, Tauxe says.
What about other patient complaints?
A variety of other organ problems might be triggered by HUS, that severe E. coli — because it causes blood clots all over the body that could leave a trail of damage, says Utah's Pavia. Among his hottest questions: HUS patients often suffer pancreatitis. Does that increase risk for diabetes later in life?
But proving a connection will require tracking a lot of patients who can provide very good medical records documenting their initial foodborne illness, he cautions.

Chairmen of house committee states" USDA so completely failed to do its job"

USDA SHOULD IMPROVE PROCEDURES FOR HELPINGSCHOOLS MANAGE FOOD RECALLS, WITNESSES TELL HOUSE EDUCATION COMMITTEEUS Fed NewsWASHINGTON Source of Article: House Education & Labor Committee issued the following news release:The U.S. Department of Agriculture did not provide adequate support to help school districts track, handle, and dispose of tainted beef in the wake of the largest meat recall in U.S. history, witnesses told the House Education and Labor Committee today.The USDA issued the recall last month after a U.S. Humane Society investigation revealed that meat from non-ambulatory (or "downer") cows at a California meatpacking company had been allowed to enter the food supply. Federal law prohibits meat from downer cows from entering the food supply because it poses a greater risk of salmonella and e.coli contamination and mad cow disease. More than a third of the tainted meat - more than 50 million pounds - had gone to federal nutrition programs, including to schools."This incident raises very alarming questions about the U.S. Department of Agriculture's ability to monitor the safety of meat in this country - including the meat that is being served to children in the National School Lunch program," said U.S. Rep George Miller, the chairman of the House Education and Labor Committee. "Schools and parents should have every assurance that the food supplied to their kids' cafeterias by the federal government is safe. It is unacceptable that the USDA so completely failed to do its job."

Monday, March 12, 2007

Autopsy Confirms TGK Inmate Died From Salmonella

MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, Fla. -- A completed autopsy report confirms salmonella poisoning was responsible for the death of an inmate at the Turner-Guilford-Knight Correctional Center last fall.
Arlin Reyes-Madrid was an inmate there when he mysteriously became ill and died Nov. 7. A source told Local 10 at the time that Reyes-Madrid, 22, was being treated for food poisoning. He was taken to a local hospital, where he was later pronounced dead.
Corey Barney, who heads an organization of minority correctional officers who eat from the same kitchen as inmates at TGK, said he never received any memo or advisory warning them that, according to jail logs, another dozen inmates were taken to either the hospital or the corrections clinic exhibiting similar symptoms of vomiting and diarrhea within 24 hours after Reyes-Madrid was hospitalized
"This is never something that was told to my members or to any officers that I'm aware of," Barnes said.
Janelle Hall, a spokeswoman for the Miami-Dade Corrections and Rehabilitation Department, said health and food safety training and procedures have been revised since Reyes-Madrid's death.
"Not only are we comfortable, (but) we are continuing to look at all facets of health and food safety within, not only TGK, but our other six facilities," Hall said.
Health inspectors said they never did find the source of the salmonella, though they did find about 70 other issues, all but three of which have been corrected.
Another inspection is scheduled for March.

Friday, October 06, 2006


October 5, 2006

U.S. Opens Criminal Inquiry in Spinach Scare


Federal investigators have opened a criminal investigation into accusations that some California spinach growers and distributors failed to take adequate measures to ensure that their spinach was safe before selling it.

Yesterday, agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Office of Criminal Investigations in the Food and Drug Administration carried out search warrants at Natural Selection Foods of San Juan Bautista and Growers Express of Salinas.

Natural Selection, a large distributor of fresh produce, had previously recalled its packages of fresh spinach. Its chief operating officer, Charles Sweat, said in a statement that all tests at the Natural Selection plant showed no contamination.

“We continue to believe that the source of the contamination was in the fields from which we buy our spinach,” Mr. Sweat said.

A person who answered the phone at Growers Express said the company would not comment.
The criminal investigation is surprising in a scare that sickened 193 people in 26 states and Canada, resulting in the death of a Wisconsin woman and 98 being people hospitalized, the food and drug agency said.

All the victims had a virulent strain of E. coli bacteria, O157:H7.

With the focus of the investigation narrowing to spinach grown in the Salinas Valley, the agency told consumers last week that they could again eat fresh spinach.

Eleven bags of fresh spinach have tested positive for E. coli O157:H7, the agency reported yesterday. The United States attorney for the Northern District of California, Kevin V. Ryan, said investigators had no evidence that the contamination was deliberate or that it continued.

“We are investigating allegations that certain spinach growers and distributors may not have taken all necessary or appropriate steps to ensure that their spinach was safe before it was placed into interstate commerce,” Mr. Ryan said.

Investigators have also visited Primus Labs of Santa Maria, Calif., which performs routine testing for E. coli among growers, Juan Muniz, Primus operations manager, said.
Mr. Muniz refused to discuss the specifics of the inquiry but said one challenge is the lack of definitive rules on what is an unacceptable E. coli level.

“I can eat something where my immune system is not affected, but my son or my father — one or two colonies could affect them,” Mr. Muniz said.

Growers usually ask Primus to test for general E. coli levels, Mr. Muniz said. If the results are a problem, growers may ask for follow-up tests that look specifically at O157:H7, Mr. Muniz said. But there is no definitive guideline for the level of general E. coli that would initiate the second test, he added.

Farm practices are governed by a voluntary code of good practices that tells growers to “maximize their efforts to minimize contamination,” Mr. Muniz said.

“What does that mean?” he added. “It’s complicated.”

On Tuesday, a top California food safety official announced that eight fecal samples from cattle pastures near the affected spinach fields had tested positive for O157:H7.

“This is not really an unexpected finding,” the official, Kevin Reilly of the Health Services Department, said. “We do know that E. coli O157:H7 can be found in healthy cattle, and that it is something that if we look, we are able to find it. The real thing here is to see if the strain type matches up with the outbreak strain.”

Five companies have voluntarily recalled their spinach products since the outbreak was reported nearly three weeks ago. Natural Selection was first, recalling on Sept. 15 all products containing spinach. The company processes and packages spinach for more than 20 brands, including Dole, Nature’s Basket, Trader Joe’s, Ready Pac and Riverside Farms.

Another company in Salinas, River Ranch, followed two days later, having obtained some of its spinach from Natural Selection. In the next week, companies in Portland, Ore.; Seattle; and West Caldwell, N.J., recalled spinach products.

Some grocery chains began re-stocking fresh spinach last week, taking pains to show that the spinach was grown in places like Colorado and Canada. In the last 11 years, 20 E. coli outbreaks have been linked to “leafy products” grown in the region, including two related to spinach, Dr. Reilly said.

Copyright 2006 The New York Times Company

Letter to the Editor of the New York Times

06 October 2006

Letter to the Editor
New York Times
New York, NY

Dear Editor:

Amazing that the" U.S. OPENS A CRIMINAL INQUIRY IN SPINACH SCARE" but shows no concern for school children or pregnant women who may be affected with the LCMV virus and the effects of Toxoplasmosis. The USDA and CDC have the documented evidence of millions of pounds of rat fecal contaminated meat produced by the State of Florida and their Prison Industries. This meat was distributed to schools, supermarkets and institutions nationwide.

Why is this issue being hidden in the Bush's?!

Gardiner Harris and the New York Times have investigated and failed to take a stand and publish the facts detailing this national health issue. Is the Times just waiting for a crop of sick and possibly dying children to be diagnosed in order to take a responsible stand?

Georgia, Florida, and a multitude of U.S. Senators and U.S. Representatives have been informed and are very aware of this situation and have chosen to do nothing but continue to campaign.

Question: As a concerned citizen I would like to know if the CDC has investigated the relationship between the reported fecal contamination of meats and the increase of babies born with health problems?

Thank you for time and prompt attention.

Sincerely yours,

Laurence M. Stone

Friday, September 29, 2006

Article From the Meating Place In Print Online

THE VOCAL POINT: E. coli spinach outbreak on center of meat industry's plate

Dan Murphy on 9/29/2006 for

You knew this was coming.

Although the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has so far been unable to pinpoint the source of the E. coli O157:H7 in fresh bagged spinach, more than 180 people in 26 states have been infected, and one person has died during the last two weeks.

Worse, CDC reported that more than half of the people infected ended up in the hospital — nearly double the typical rate in O157:H7 incidents. About 15 percent of those patients developed hemolytic uremic syndrome, again a rate that is "higher than normal.

"It's enough to qualify the outbreak as a major food-safety failure.

On the part of the meat industry, to listen to some of the harsher media critics.

In other words, the spinach isn't responsible for the outbreak; cattle producers and meatpackers are.

That's because E. coli O157:H7 is associated with cattle manure, and that's enough evidence to convict producers and packers.

[By the way, anyone know the origins of how the (relatively) innocuous coliform bacteria mutated into such a virulent pathogen? In 1980, Alison O'Brien, a microbiologist at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Md., reasoned that since the toxin produced by pathogenic strains of shigella bacteria mimicked the "new" O157:H7 strain, it was likely that E. coli had somehow incorporated shigella's ability to produce such a toxin.]

What's troubling is that according many media critics, organic growers should be held blameless. For example: In a New York Times story last week, Nina Planck, a food activist and writer, wrote the following screed:

"There is also no evidence so far that Natural Selection Foods, the huge shipper implicated in the outbreak that packages salad greens under more than two dozen brands, failed to use proper handling methods."

Indeed, this epidemic has little to do with the folks who grow and package your greens. The detective trail ultimately leads back to a seemingly unrelated food industry: beef and dairy cattle."

Planck resurrected the notion that O157:H7 thrives in a "new" biological niche: the acidic stomachs of beef and dairy cattle fed a grain-based diet, what Planck indelicately labeled "the typical ration on most industrial farms.

"She then repeated the so-called conventional wisdom that contaminated manure from grain-fed cattle contaminates groundwater, and that's what contaminated the spinach.

Maintaining the mythPlanck referenced a 2003 study in The Journal of Dairy Science suggesting that when cows were switched from a grain diet to hay for only five days, O157 declined 1,000-fold.

This parallels a widely reported 1998 study at Cornell University claiming that switching Holstein cows to an all-hay diet caused the number of acid-resistant E. coli cells in the animals' digestive tracts to decline by nearly 100,000 fold in only five days.

All hail the food-safety savior: Hay.

"In a week, we could choke O157 from its favorite home," Planck wrote. "Even if beef cattle were switched to a forage diet just seven days before slaughter, it would greatly reduce cross-contamination by manure of hamburger in meat-packing plants. Such a measure might have prevented the E. coli O157:H7 outbreak that plagued the Jack in the Box fast food chain in 1993."

And you thought we were past such simplistic exaggerations.

At the time the Cornell study was published, better brains than mine dissected the research from a number of angles, basically concluding that the media's interpretation that grain is the cause of the E. coli O157:H7 problem was impractical, incomplete and inaccurate.

For one, the Cornell researchers were studying "generic" E. coli, not the pathogenic O15:H7 strain. More importantly, a University of Idaho research team just months later experimentally dosed Holstein steers with E. coli O157:H7 and found that the animals harbored the pathogen longer while being fed a hay diet than a grain-based diet similar to feedlot finishing rations. That Idaho study also showed no difference between grain or hay in acid resistance of E. coli O157:H7 found in cattle feces.

At the same time, a group of Washington State University scientists charged that the Cornell study had "gaping holes" in its design and data, and that it should have been subjected to more stringent peer review before it was made public.

Other scientists' research results were contrary to the Cornell conclusion, the WSU team noted, pointing to studies showing no difference in E. coli populations between grass-fed and feedlot cattle. They also expressed concern that a rapid switch in diets could cause metabolic distress, increasing the chance that E. coli O157:H7 would be shed in feces and end up on the hide of the animal at the packing plant.

You find that kind of nuance in most discussions about the relationship of cattle diets — even among scientists.

About three years ago, I happened to be chatting with the veterinary office attached to Australia's U.S. consulate. Since there had never been an E. coli O157:H7 in that country, many critics claim that the grass-based diet of cattle Down Under is proof that grain feeding is the smoking gun.

"We never had an [E. coli O157:H7] outbreak in our country," he said.

"Have you surveyed cattle populations to see if the pathogen is present?" I asked.

He answered, "We don't need to, mate."

Nor do those who already "know" the answer to the food-safety challenge of E. coli O15:H7 need to reason any further. The conclusions drawn by Planck and others who leap to the simplistic conclusion that feeding grain to cattle "created" O157:H7, and that a magical switch from grain to forage — as if that were even possible — would solve the problem are way off the mark.

But like it or not, the meat industry is implicated in the fallout from this current outbreak. As Planck phrased it, "California's spinach industry is now the financial victim of an outbreak it probably did not cause. So give the spinach growers a break, and direct your attention to the people in our agricultural community who just might be able to solve this deadly problem: beef and dairy farmers."

According to her, E. coli doesn't grow on spinach.

Unfortunately for the industry, solutions to the scientific and PR challenges surrounding E. coli O157:H7 aren't exactly growing on trees, either.

Dan Murphy is a freelance writer and former editor of MMT magazine based in the Pacific Northwest . His column, THE VOCAL POINT, appears in this space each Friday.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

"The Marketing Arm Of The USDA Says One Thing, But The CDC Says Another" (Click Link To Read Related Story)

Beef, poultry and pork its what’s for dinner in over 88% of American households on a daily basis. Never before has the industry faced so much doubt when it comes to the safety of these meat products. E coli, mad cow prions, listeria, the avian flu and now salmonella crossing over into beef and pork presents significant dangers. During the past ten years the meat industry has witnessed a rise of meat related illnesses and deaths in conjunction with these pathogens. Is this a natural occurrence or have we created these ailments ourselves through shortcuts and relaxed production standards. Almost all of these pathogens can be avoided with the exception of the avian flu, if the proper care is taken in the slaughterhouses and processing plants of all sizes. We must continue to monitor and protect the feed we give livestock so that we can protect these animals and ourselves from the effects of uncontrolled cannibalism.

Another silent but deadly pathogen is called Toxoplasma; this parasite is found in the fecal matter of rodents and cats. In order to rid themselves of this parasite, cats and rodents shed it in their feces. If by some chance a human came in contact with this parasite, they have it for life. There is no cure, no vaccine and no treatments. The only saving grace is our wonderful and complex immune systems that works proactively and protects us from an environment full of viruses, bacteria and parasites like Toxoplasma. If an individual was unfortunate enough not to have a normal immune systems, then this can become a serious issue. Unborn babies and persons suffering from aliments such as: sickle cell, lupus, common allergies and HIV can face dire consequences when exposed to Toxoplasma according to the CDC. Well I guess you are asking yourself, what does Toxoplasma have to do with the safety of meat products, well let me explain.

There is a meat production facility in the state of Florida; annually they where producing over 8 millions pounds of beef products such as ground beef, hamburger patties and sausage links. In this state operated facility RATS were present and RAT FECAL MATTER was found in the storage and production areas. A cat was also present in these areas, to control the rodent population. CAT FECAL MATTER was also found around the production areas.
Air movement can easily spread the Toxoplasma virus and it can be easily inhaled into the lungs and adsorbed into the system through the skin. In a processing plant the parasite can be absorbed into the meat through contaminated production areas. This is a serious national public health issues that the state of Florida and the USDA are aware of and are not doing anything to remedy. This meat may still be in distribution and in freezers waiting to be consumed and placing consumers at risk, as this meat was never subject to a recall in spite of consistent pleas from the contractor of these meat items.

These meat products were shipped across the United States to public schools, national supermarket chains, hospitals and prisons nationwide. There is a strong possibility that schools in your local area received these tainted meat products and you, your child and your pregnant friends may have consumed them.

We have contacted Governor Jeb Bush, Whitney Meagher of the National PTA, Nancy Cox President of the Florida PTA, Saxby Chambliss of the United States Senate and Tom Price of the United States House of Representatives to name a few. Still we receive no help from these officials in alerting the public of this national health issue. We must protect our ourselves, our children and our food chain from toxins and pathogens like Toxoplasma and salmonella.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

"RECENT NEWS": You Have Dining Choices In Florida, Maggots Or Rat Fecal Matter As Side Dishes! (Click Link To Read Related Story)

Sanitation, precautions, cleanliness; these are words that don’t ring a bell when you think of food safety in the State of Florida. Officials may say that juvenile delinquents do not deserve to eat filet mignon while they serve their term, but no child deserves maggots in their meal. The Miami Herald reports on how maggots found their way into the lunch of kids at a South Florida juvenile hall. In Florida your in a no win situation when your fed by the state, maggot or rat fecal matter, the choice is yours.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

The USDA Even Gives A Member Of Congress The Run Around

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Wednesday, May 17, 2006


Can you imagine contracting with a state agency for the production of millions of pounds of meat products and having this meat distributed nationally throughout the country to countless amounts of Americans? Only to discover that it was infested with RAT FECAL MATTER and RAT URINE? Wait it gets worse, also this meat production plant used Cats a form of pest control for the rodents. CAT FECAL MATTER was also found in the warehouse production areas. Can you also imagine notifying the USDA and a Florida State Agency of this contamination just to have our pleas for a recall of this meat ignored and covered up. Well these facts are true and our quest is to make the public aware of the facts, dangers and extent that the USDA-FDA-State of Florida and Florida Department of Corrections have gone to COVER-UP this issue.

Be aware that the CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL (CDC) has recently published articles and warnings on the dangers of the ingestion of RAT FECAL MATTER/RAT URINE & CAT FECAL MATTER.

(Links are provided to the right of the blog to the CDC website and other heatlh organizations for more detailed information on the dangers of ingesting RAT FECAL MATTER/RAT URINE & CAT FECAL MATTER into the human body.)

The CDC states that RAT FECAL MATTER/RAT URINE can cause up to six diseases that can infect consumers and how one of these -Lymphocytic Choriomeningitis Virus (LCMV) has the potential for a severe infection in immune system compromised patients and developmental defects in fetuses.The CDC also states that CAT FECAL MATTER may contain a single-celled parasite called Toxoplasma, Cats become infected with this parasite by eating infected prey, such as birds or RODENTS. Cats shed this parasite by passing it in their feces. Toxoplasma also has the potential for a severe infection in immune system compromised patients and brain, organ and eye damage in newborns.

This meat was distributed to elementary and middle schools, public health institutions, federal and state prisons, cruise ship lines and supermarket chains nationwide. School children, teachers, parents, pregnant women and consumers should not be kept in the dark about these potentially life affecting diseases and their hidden lingering dangers. They should be able to eat ground beef or other meat products without worrying about possible ill effects later on in life.
Please join us in our quest to bring this growing nation-wide health issue to the full awareness of the public.

(Posted below are documented proof via pictures of the RAT INFESTATION at the meat production warehouse in the state of Florida and letters from government organizations and agencies denying our claims after we demanded a recall of all infected meat products. Just double click on the letters and click the blue google button for an enlarged view.)

This blog invites your inquiry, comments and support by informing a friend or loved one of these hidden dangers in the nations food supply.



Hundreds of documented food safety violations are brought to light every year by USDA inspection teams. Depending on the severity of the infraction, penalties range from paying fines and restitutions, to top-level executives serving jail sentences. So why is their a double standard for the state of Florida, one might ask? How could the same scenario of a RAT INFESTED WAREHOUSE occur throughout the United States where individuals and corporations are held accountable by the USDA, but not in Florida? How does that work?

There have been numerous announcements in recent months from the Federal Centers for Disease Control & Prevention about salmonella and E coli in certain ground beef products. Although the government did issue a recall of these ground beef products, they did not do it in a timely fashion according to the CDC. Those announcements showed an eight-month to two-year delay by the USDA. How can Florida be confident of their actions after just a 7-day investigation?

Posted to the right in our links section are news articles from across the country showing the USDA doing their job. In fact they are doing an good job of insuring that proper meat production methods are in place, everywhere except the state of Florida.






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