Swine Fever, E. Coli Warning
Before planning your holiday dinner or giving raw meat treats to your dog, learn about this food adulteration and continued risk of e-coli contamination.
November 30, 2018 | TheDogPress.com Staff
We hope you skipped the Romain lettuce and avoided any food poisoning or e-coli risk at Thanksgiving. But if you’re planning Christmas dinner, the food choices you make this year are more important than ever. 2018 was a bad year for foodborne illness but it began in 1983 when the Center for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) announced the “Western States E. coli outbreak." Note there was no warning from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
You may remember the fast food poisoning that sickened 723 people including children. Almost 10% died from E. coli (Escherichia coli) and many survivors suffered permanent kidney and/or brain damage.
Although not much science is taught in public schools today, we trust you know that E. coli is often found in ground beef and other foodstuffs. In fact, the USDA and FSIS (Food Safety Inspection Service) consider this nasty pathogen an adulterant. We won’t say there’s been a FDA lid put on the subject of food safety but food adulteration is the process in which the quality is lowered by adding (cheaper) inferior quality material or by extraction of valuable ingredients which can then be marketed as “health food” or as a separate supplement.
One of our staff whose mother is a livestock breeder made this astute observation “to sell or transport food animals, USDA requires ‘name-rank-serial number’ but produce farmers are not required to provide labeling or point of origin.” That fact brings us to the point and what food safety means to you as someone who reads labels or who is concerned about the safety of today’s dog food.
When food items are condemned for human consumption they are usually sold to pet food producers where they are “denatured”. While it’s true that carnivores occasionally eat carrion (dead animals) that is not the same as eating diseased/infected carcasses day after day. In nature, animals die from injury or old age, rarely from disease or overcrowding…
“Keeping trade-limiting foreign animal diseases, such as ASF (African Swine Fever) out of the United States is critical to pork producers,” said Steve Rommereim, National Pork Board president. “We all need to improve the overall level of preparedness. We hope for the best, but we must prepare for the worst.”
We are told “the origin of the disease remained unclear and the matter (is) still under investigation.” Translated into truth, that means we’ll never know what caused the infection in pork but here’s something to chew on: African swine fever, which cannot be cured and has no vaccine, is known to survive for weeks in feed ingredients like soymeal. Another top food analyst warned “major pig producers are already worried about how to verify the safety of their feed supplies.
We don’t mean to worry you, only to offer “food for thought” in pointing out the gaps and gasps (!) of safety certification in both produce and meats. If you feed raw meats to your dogs, their system can probably handle some E. Coli or other germs but YOU must use care in handling that raw meat. That is also why we are told to “wash food” before preparing or eating any fresh food or vegetable.
Merry Christmas and have a healthy wealthy New Year.
Reference 11/11/18 Reuters.com China Swine Fever
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