Category Science & Research

When is a potato washer not a potato washer? When it’s washing cantaloupes

Opinion Food companies have been at the forefront of technological innovation and scientific research and development for decades upon decades. Cursory attention to the items we eat — how those items are grown, sourced, processed, and packaged – provides ample evidence of scientific research and development and technological innovation in the food industry. Simultaneously, food companies are... Continue Reading Read More

The little mushroom that could, with a little help from its gene-snipping friends

White button mushrooms. For some people, they’re a cooking staple. For others, they’re not even on the shopping list. But no matter where they fall in a consumer’s bank of preferences, these popular mushrooms are in the forefront of what some are hailing as the “latest breakthrough” in crop breeding: gene editing, often referred to as... Continue Reading Read More

EFSA issues second cyanide in food opinion

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has said it is unlikely that there is a health risk from cyanogenic glycosides in foods other than raw apricot kernels. Traces of naturally-occurring compounds called cyanogenic glycosides can be present in some foods and be converted into cyanide after eating. EFSA’s panel on Contaminants in the Food Chain... Continue Reading Read More

Researchers find antibiotic resistance genes on leafy greens

Researchers from a German institute have expanded knowledge about produce harboring antibiotic resistance genes that often escape traditional molecular detection methods. These antibiotic resistance genes might evade cultivation-independent detection, but could still be transferred to human pathogens, according to a team from the Julius Kühn Institut. Fresh fruits and vegetables are increasingly recognized as a... Continue Reading Read More

Penn State researchers find farmers markets’ food safety inadequate; E. coli and Listeria abound

Many vendors at farmers markets take inadequate precautions to prevent the spread of foodborne illness, and they should be trained to reduce food-safety risks, according to Penn State researchers who completed the final phase of an innovative five-year study. Using a comprehensive three-way approach, the research assessed food safety behaviors at Pennsylvania farmers markets using... Continue Reading Read More

FAO and WHO find low risk of histamine poisoning from salmonids

The United Nations’ FAO and the World Health Organization have found that the risk of histamine development in fish of the Salmonidae family is unlikely to reach the levels needed to cause food poisoning. The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations and World Health Organization (WHO) said that under appropriate time-temperature control... Continue Reading Read More

Federal grant funds research to improve safety of oysters on high-priced menus

The USDA has given more than $450,000 for a research project designed to increase the safety of certain commercially farmed oysters from the Gulf Coast that are “bound for the premium half-shell market.” A marine scientist at Auburn University, Bill Walton, is known as one of the driving forces behind the Gulf Coast’s up-and-coming, off-bottom... Continue Reading Read More

Vinegar can help home cooks battle bacteria on leafy greens

The most recent outbreak from Escherichia coli O157:H7 in romaine lettuce spurred me to pull up an old draft, trim it and post it in an attempt to promote public health. Enjoy.  In the Spring of 2017 while sprinkling balsamic vinegar over chopped romaine lettuce, I wondered if anyone had published on the bactericidal effect... Continue Reading Read More

Go ahead, bend your elbows for that morning fix: Coffee’s OK

Java enthusiasts can brew in peace as new research shows that the presence of acrylamide, a known carcinogenic chemical, in nine of the top selling coffee brands is undetectable. The Clean Label Project – a national nonprofit focused on health and transparency in labeling – completed analysis of the research this month, finding that many other foods contain significantly higher levels of acrylamide than does coffee. The 2018... Continue Reading Read More

WHO urges 16 countries to join in fight against deadly outbreak

The World Health Organization is coordinating efforts among 16 African countries in an attempt to contain the world’s largest ever Listeria outbreak as officials in Namibia try to discern whether a sick person in that country contracted listeriosis from processed meat imported from South Africa. In another development this week, officials in Mozambique reported they... Continue Reading Read More