Category Archives: Food science

Food composition and contamination, Bacterial and physical contamination, General pollutants (heavy metals), Food labelling, food trace metals, compliance with Foods Standard Code, food forensics and/or contamination, toxins in shellfish or seafood.

New York scientists sequence DNA to fight foodborne disease outbreaks

BioPrepWatch Paul Tinder July 30, 2014

Scientists at the New York State Department of Health‘s Wadsworth Center Laboratories are using next-generation DNA sequencing techniques to pinpoint the source of Salmonella outbreaks.
By using benchtop whole genome sequencing equipment, clinical and public health labs are able to rapidly identify strains of Salmonella and speed up responses to potential outbreaks. Scientists at Wadsworth are applying the technology to follow outbreaks in real-time and test its effectiveness in a public health laboratory, according to a New York State Department of Health press release.
“Having this technology at our disposal will greatly enhance our capacity for protecting the public from foodborne illnesses, which sicken thousands of Americans every year,” Howard Zucker, the department’s acting commissioner, said. “Knowing the exact source of an outbreak can prevent illness from spreading and prevent many people from getting sick.”

Read more

Link to EID journal article

No beef or alcohol in our juice, says Golden Circle

Brisbane Times Anne-Louise Brown 29 July 2014

It boasts of being made under the sun, but some of the products used in the production of Golden Circle juice are far from fruity.

Heinz Australia, which owns Golden Circle, told Fairfax Media last week a clarifying agent derived from beef and alcohol-based flavours were used across its drinks range.

It was a revelation that caused outrage in sectors of the Hindu community, many of whom avoid meat and alcohol for religious reasons, and vegetarians and vegans, who do not consume animal products or by-products.

Now the iconic Queensland-born company has hit back at the claims, saying they were taken out of context.

A chemical-free solution to stop bread from getting mouldy

ScienceAlert Australia 27 July 2014

Scientists have finally found a way to make bread last longer—and the new method replaces chemical preservatives with ingredients sourced from plants.  Called ‘active packaging’, this alternative adds natural preservatives to the packing material instead of chemicals to the fresh bread. The compounds used in active packaging come from plants such as oregano and clove, which have natural antimicrobial properties.

Read more

Request a copy of the article (QH Staff only)

Pork industry calls for Australian-made bacon labelling overhaul

ABC News | Landline Pip Courtney, Peter McCutcheon 27 July 2014

Australian pork producers say their industry is being undermined by weak labelling laws that make it easy for foreign pig meat to be portrayed as home-grown.

Read more

Royal Society of Chemistry’s flagship journal goes Gold open access

(Royal Society of Chemistry 15 July 2014) The Royal Society of Chemistry’s flagship journal, Chemical Science, is going Gold open access from 2015 — making it the world’s first high-quality open access chemistry journal.

The Royal Society of Chemistry’s flagship journal, Chemical Science, is going Gold open access from 2015 – making it the world’s first high-quality open access chemistry journal.  From January 2015 onwards, all new content in Chemical Science will be free for anyone to access.

To ease the transition to open access, the Royal Society of Chemistry is waiving all Article Processing Charges (APCs) for two years.

Read EurekAlert Summary

View RSC Chemical Science webpage

Preventing foodborne illness, naturally — with cinnamon

(Washington State University 16 July 2014) Cinnamomum cassia oil was shown to be effective as a natural antibacterial agent against several strains of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli, known to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as ‘non-O157 STEC’. The study results add to a body of knowledge that will help improve food safety and reduce or eliminate cases of food poisoning and related deaths.

Read EurekAlert Summary

Request a copy of the article (QH Staff only)

China shuts meat factory supplying McDonald’s, KFC

ABC News 21 July 2014

Authorities in Shanghai have shut down a factory of the US food provider OSI Group for selling out-of-date meat to restaurant giants including McDonald’s and KFC.  A Shanghai television channel has reported that workers at the plant mixed expired meat with fresh meat product and deliberately misled quality inspectors from McDonald’s.

Read more

McDonald’s, KFC ’sold old meat’

Do you want flies with that?

Courier Mail Matthew Killoran 20 July 2014

COCKROACHES in the kitchen, rat droppings in the deep fryer and salmonella are just a few of the nasties that Brisbane’s food safety inspectors are finding on the menu at some of the city’s most popular restaurants.

Read more

Study sparks organic foods debate

BBC News James Morgan 11 July 2014

A new scientific review claims organic foods are higher in nutrients and lower in pesticides compared with conventionally grown varieties.  Its authors carried out an analysis of 343 peer-reviewed studies looking at the composition of crops and foods.  The meta-analysis found differences between organic and non-organic varieties which the team concluded were “significant and meaningful”.

Read more

Request a copy of the article (QH Staff only)

‘Coachroach was standing up in my bowl’

Courier Mail Brittany Vonow 15 July 0214

A FOUR-STAR rated Brisbane restaurant at South Bank was fined more than $25,000 after a customer found a live cockroach in her chicken and mushroom risotto.

Read more