DES MOINES, Iowa – The International Association for Food Protection (IAFP) will present awards recognizing excellence in food safety to the following organizations and individuals at IAFP 2019, July 21–24 in Louisville, Kentucky.
The IAFP Fellow Award is awarded to professionals who have contributed to IAFP and its affiliates with distinction over an extended period of time. This year, four recipients will receive this honor: Francisco Diez-Gonzalez, University of Georgia, Athens; Linda J. Harris, University of California – Davis; Steven Ricke, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville; and Tori Stivers, University of Georgia, Athens.
Gary Acuff, Texas A&M University, College Station, will be awarded the President’s Lifetime Achievement Award. This award, given at the discretion of the IAFP President, recognizes an individual who has made a lasting impact on Advancing Food Safety Worldwide® through a lifetime of professional achievements in food protection.
The Honorary Life Membership Award will be presented to J. Stan Bailey, bioMérieux, Athens, Georgia; Pina Fratamico, Collaborator Scientist (Emeritus), USDA Agricultural Research Service, Wyndmoor, Pennsylvania; Keith Ito, University of California – Davis; John Holah, Holchem Laboratories Ltd., Bury, United Kingdom; and Jenny Scott, U.S. FDA CFSAN, College Park, Maryland. This award recognizes IAFP Members for their dedication to the high ideals and objectives of IAFP and for their service to the Association.
The Harry Haverland Citation Award will be awarded to Randy Worobo, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, for his years of devotion to the ideals and objectives of the Association.
Clean Works Corp., Beamsville, Ontario, Canada, will receive the Food Safety Innovation Award, given for its patent pending processes for sanitizing the surface of produce and other foods without using water.
The International Leadership Award will be presented to Marcel Zwietering, Wageningen University, The Netherlands, for his dedication to the high ideals and objectives of IAFP and for promotion of the mission of the Association in countries outside of the United States and Canada.
Almond Board of California, Modesto, California, will receive the GMA Food Safety Award in recognition of a long history of outstanding contributions to food safety research and education.
The Frozen Food Foundation Freezing Research Award will be presented to Martin Wiedmann, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York. This award honors an individual, group, or organization for preeminence and outstanding contributions in research that impacts food safety attributes of freezing.
Jasna Kovac, Pennsylvania State University, University Park, will receive the Young Investigator Award in Microbial Resistance. This award recognizes an individual who has shown outstanding ability and professional promise as a researcher in food microbiology/food safety focusing on antimicrobial resistance.
The Maurice Weber Laboratorian Award will be presented to Larry Beuchat, University of Georgia (Distinguished Research Professor Emeritus), Athens, to recognize his service for outstanding contributions in the laboratory and recognizing a commitment to the development of innovative and practical analytical approaches in support of food safety.
Andrea Moreno Switt, Universidad Andres Bello, Santiago, Chile, will be presented the Larry Beuchat Young Researcher Award. This award is presented to a young researcher who has shown outstanding ability and professional promise in the early years of his or her career.
Tanya Roberts, Center for Foodborne Illness Research and Prevention, Vashon, Washington, is the recipient of the Ewen C.D. Todd Control of Foodborne Illness Award. This award recognizes an individual for dedicated and exceptional contributions to the reduction of risks of foodborne illness.
Scott Burnett, Post Consumer Brands, Lakeville, Minnesota, will receive the Sanitarian Award to recognize his dedication and exceptional service to the profession of sanitarian, serving the public and the food industry.
The Elmer Marth Educator Award will be presented to Marcel Zwietering, Wageningen University, The Netherlands, to recognize his dedication and exceptional contributions to the profession of the educator.
Updated information is available regarding the National Bioengineered Food Disclosure Standard.
Will each facility be required to validate a process for highly refined ingredients? Or will facilities that use the same processes be able to rely on results from a process that has already been validated?
For purposes of the threshold, what types of records are required to show that the presence of a bioengineered substance is inadvertent or technically unavoidable? If a food manufacturer has specification sheets that require ingredient suppliers to provide inputs with less than or equal to 0.9% BE substance, can they assume that such presence is inadvertent or technically unavoidable?
Answer: At 7 CFR 66.5(c), the Standard exempts from disclosure a food in which no ingredient intentionally contains a bioengineered substance, with an allowance for inadvertent or technically unavoidable bioengineered presence of up to five percent for each ingredient. Any intentional use of a bioengineered food or bioengineered food ingredient requires disclosure.
If a regulated entity’s records indicate they have sourced a non-bioengineered ingredient and they have taken reasonable precautions to keep bioengineered and non-bioengineered ingredients separate, then AMS may presume that any bioengineered presence below five percent is inadvertent or technically unavoidable. A record that indicates an ingredient has less than or equal to 0.9 percent BE presence, without more, is insufficient because the amount up to or equal to 0.9 percent may have been intentionally included. A record that indicates an ingredient was sourced from a non-bioengineered crop, reasonable precautions have been taken to keep that non-bioengineered crop and ingredient separate from bioengineered crops and ingredients, and that any presence of a bioengineered substance is less than or equal to 0.9 would be sufficient to demonstrate compliance with the exemption at 7 CFR 66.5(c).
Travelling can be stressful experience, and that stress extends to piglets, such as when they’re weaned from their mothers and transported to nursery barns. Now, instead of using dietary antibiotics to help the piglets cope and avoid illness, scientists with the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) are investigating a naturally occurring amino acid known as L-glutamine.
Initial laboratory studies in 2017 showed glutamine-fed piglets gained just as much weight as antibiotic-treated ones, among other health benefits. But the researchers, led by ARS animal scientist Jay Johnson, wanted to try and replicate those results on a larger scale that more closely mimicked commercial production scenarios.
The effort, which was supported by the National Pork Board, arose from a need to provide livestock producers with alternatives to using dietary antibiotics as a growth-promoting agent in swine. A federal rule in 2017 restricted the practice amid concerns that microbial resistance to medically important antibiotics could jeopardize their effectiveness in fighting human infection, notes Johnson, with the ARS Livestock Behavior Research Unit in West Lafayette, Indiana.
In the larger-scale trials, groups of piglets were transported to a nursery barn located 12 hours from where they were weaned to simulate the kinds of stress they’d experience commercially, which can diminish the young animals’ immune system function, appetite and weight gain—something antibiotics helped them recover from.
For the nursery phase of the study, one group of piglets was fed a diet containing the antibiotic chlortetracycline, another glutamine and a third group—used as experimental controls—nothing but feed ingredients.
Among the findings, published in the May 29 issue of the Journal of Animal Science:
- Glutamine-fed piglets gained weight as well as the antibiotic group but showed fewer signs of intestinal damage from pathogens.
- Glutamine group members were also somewhat less aggressive in pens with mixed litters than those given the antibiotic.
- Compared to the control group, glutamine- and antibiotic-treated piglets showed lower blood plasma levels of tumornecrosisfactoralpha, a biochemical marker of inflammation and immune system activity that can use energy and divert it from the animals’ growth needs.
The meat quality of market-ready pigs from the glutamine group was no different than that of the antibiotic or control group. Johnson says further research will focus on learning how glutamine works to promote growth and wellbeing in piglets after weaning and transport. -- by Jan Suszkiw
Smithfield Foods, Inc. has released its 2018 Sustainability Report, highlighting key milestones and ongoing efforts to feed the world’s growing population in a responsible way. Smithfield’s robust sustainability program drives all aspects of its business, creating value in the following areas: animal care, environment, food safety and quality, helping communities, and people. As part of Smithfield’s ongoing commitment to transparency, the company also launched an interactive tool that brings to life each stage of its supply chain—from farm to facility to fork—to show where its food comes from and how it gets to consumers’ tables. The virtual tour, which includes videos and case studies on sustainability initiatives that have driven Smithfield to the forefront of its industry, is available at sustainability.smithfieldfoods.com.
“Our people work hard every day to maintain our position as a leader in sustainability, ensuring that we are fulfilling our mission to produce good food the right way. It is extremely gratifying to lead a team that is so passionate about meeting this responsibility,” said Kenneth M. Sullivan, president and chief executive officer for Smithfield Foods. “Sustainability is part of our culture. We have seen first-hand how investing in sustainability by setting bold goals and hard targets—and achieving them—is a win-win for our company and our stakeholders, including our animals, employees, neighbors, and planet.”
“We take a comprehensive approach to sustainability throughout our entire supply chain,” said Stewart Leeth, vice president of regulatory affairs and chief sustainability officer for Smithfield. “We are always innovating and looking for new opportunities to push beyond the status quo. Our groundbreaking efforts are making a real difference in the lives of our animals, employees, suppliers, customers, and consumers, and we will continue to take bold steps to deliver on our promise to produce good food in a responsible way.”
Smithfield’s 2018 Sustainability Report highlights performance metrics, accomplishments, case studies, and progress toward a number of sustainability goals and targets, including:
Advancing innovative vaccine research through the company’s laboratory on the Raleigh campus of North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine to develop better strategies for animal disease prevention;
Expanding the company’s efforts to reduce greenhouse (GHG) emissions with an ambitious, 10-year plan to convert hog manure into clean, renewable energy at hog farms in North Carolina, Missouri, Utah, and Virginia;
Achieving an 8.7% reduction in solid waste (normalized) sent to landfills across the company’s U.S. operations, reducing its environmental impact while simultaneously growing and increasing food production;
Food Safety and Quality:
Completing the global implementation of the company’s industry-leading injury prevention system for employee safety, enhancing its efforts to continuously improve performance beyond industry averages; Exceeding the company’s inaugural diversity goal by 30% for its U.S. internship program.
To read the company’s 2018 Sustainability Report, visit smithfieldfoods.com/sustainability.