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Simon

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Posted 23 May 2005 - 08:19 PM

I watched a TV programme tonight about a couple who were buying a property in Morocco. As they wandered through the winding medieval streets of Fez I couldn't help but notice the street sellers plying their bread, fish, and vegetables in the narrow and dusty alleyways. It was a truly amazing site and the scene has probably remained the same for many centuries. To my sanitary eyes the food was stored and handled in less than hygienic conditions, and I thought if food safety is that important how come everyone in Morocco isn't dead?

Am I missing something? :dunno:

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Simon


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Charles Chew

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Posted 24 May 2005 - 07:34 AM

Simon,

When you buy safety-compromised food BUT you cook them well enough before consumption, the problem of food poisoning is basically not an issue. But if not sufficiently cooked, you either have strong "antibodies" or you fall sick or worse "die"

Its really the ready-to-eat food (modern world foodstuff) that is "perceived" to be safe and where further home processing is NOT NEEDED that really is the main cause of food poisoning............for various reasons often talked about in this forum.

So don't be surprised, people do not "die" in Morroco despite ???????

Charles Chew


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Simon

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Posted 24 May 2005 - 08:45 PM

So its all in the cooking? :dunno:


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Charles Chew

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 04:14 AM

Another great example of modern foodstuff that had gone very wrong........can't resist posting this recent event on a US Airline.

Charles Chew

U.S. FDA warns airline food supplier over filth
May 17, 2005
Reuters

WASHINGTON - Gate Gourmet, Inc., an airline catering company which provides food and beverages to a number of airlines at Honolulu Airport, must, according to a letter from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration released Tuesday and cited in this story, take major steps to clean its Honolulu location or risk the unit's closure after U.S. health inspectors found live cockroaches, dirty utensils and an oozing, pink slime earlier this year.

The letter was further cited as saying the firm also kept "dirty uncovered" trash cans near food, let workers handle ice cubes with bare hands, and did not keep food at proper temperatures, adding, "Specifically, in the pot wash area, salad area and hallways were dirty uncovered trash cans and trash carts with fruit flies and cockroaches in and near them."

The story notes that FDA officials also found a greasy stirring paddle and a "dirty oily" utensil rack at the Hawaiian facility during a February inspection. All refrigerator handles "were dirty and sticky with old food residue" and one unit "had mold growing on the windows," the agency said.
The story explains that Memphis, Tennessee-based Gate Gourmet, Inc. is one of the largest airline food suppliers and operates 115 flight kitchens in 30 countries, according to the company. It serves 200 airlines worldwide.

A spokesman for the privately held company could not be reached for comment on the letter.
The agency gave company officials 15 days to respond after it received the letter, which is on the FDA's Web site at http://www.fda.gov/f...ters/g5318d.htm - An FDA spokeswoman could not immediately confirm if the company had done so.


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Simon

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 07:44 AM

Hello Mr Chew,

That's surprising and pretty poor for a large company. Maybe it's a franchise and I'm sure they will be under a lot of price pressure from the airlines and we the consumers - but there's no excuse for some of the conditions there. It doesn't cost much to empty a few bins and clean up with soap and water.:bug:

I'm surprised the FDA gave 30 days to put it right, it sounds like there is an immediate threat to consumer safety - most of the actions in the letter could be actioned pretty much immediately.

Thanks for that Charles I didn't know the FDA posted notifications on their web site, they are interesting cases.

:off_topic:

I got your mail and will reply later.

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Simon


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Edwina Chicken Currie

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 12:57 PM

When you buy safety-compromised food BUT you cook them well enough before consumption, the problem of food poisoning is basically not an issue.

Charles - what about thermostable toxins created by the bugs which are not 'made safe' by heating but have the ability to cause food poisoning? (eg. S.Aureus)

I think your point about "strong antibodies" is more likely to be appropriate.

If a person is wrapped in cotton wool, they do not develop immunity to bacteria.

My brother used to eat soil from the garden (don't ask!!!!!!) and has never had food poisoning (and as a keen drinker / kebab eater, I'm sure he's had 'high-risk' moments!!!!)


Charles Chew

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Posted 26 May 2005 - 01:09 PM

Charles - what about thermostable toxins created by the bugs which are not 'made safe' by heating but have the ability to cause food poisoning? (eg. S.Aureus)



Fiona,
I am absolutely in agreement with you but .......shhhhhh!......Simon does not know about Thermophilic Bacteria so did not want to alarm him too much or we will get drawn into another round of "Micro" Forum again. Anyway, commercial production has no answer to heat-resistant and toxin producing bacteria unless specific process takes place.

I thought proper heat treatment would generally take care of most generic micro problems otherwise we will end up getting too paranoid. I feel common sense should always prevail or we will end up eating overlly sanitized food.

Question - If a scoop of CAVIAR falls on the floor of your house (and you know its "clean" - would you pick it up or throw it away. :spoton:

Charles CHew

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Simon

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Posted 26 May 2005 - 07:29 PM

I am absolutely in agreement with you but .......shhhhhh!......Simon does not know about Thermophilic Bacteria so did not want to alarm him too much or we will get drawn into another round of "Micro" Forum again.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Doh! What's Fermofylick bacteria? :ejut:

Question - If a scoop of CAVIAR falls on the floor of your house (and you know its "clean" - would you pick it up or throw it away. :spoton: 

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Oh that's gross I'd throw it in the bin immediately! :thumbdown:

Regards,
Simon

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Posted 31 May 2005 - 12:08 PM

Thermophilic bacteria can resist high temperatures. Highness depends at the species (Remember that there are bacteria at the black smokers in deep sea?)
We find bacteria like bacillus species that resist 55 °C in food. Some of them and some mesophilic (they like it like human beeings around 15 - 39°C) produce toxins that are heatresistant, too. Some toxins resist even cooking!
A prominent example is Bacillus cereus - toxin that causes vomiting. If its there, you could not destroy it anymore!
Bacillus cereus is found in dust... fortunately it produces his toxin only if you have higher cell counts in the medium (from 10000 / g) so its no problem - if you do not think its nasty - if you have a bit of dust on your meat in marocco...

...some more questions?
:rolleyes:

:bye:



Simon

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Posted 31 May 2005 - 08:02 PM

...some more questions?
:rolleyes:

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Not just yet Witch - thanks for the lesson in microbiology. :beer:

Regards,
Simon

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