Author Archives: James Peth

Cantaloupes

Cut cantaloupe on a plate

Cantaloupes are a healthy, low-calorie source of vitamin A (β-Carotene), vitamin C, potassium, folic acid, iron, some dietary fiber, and calcium. However, the complex surface of cantaloupe makes it well suited for harboring pathogens. In recent years, cantaloupe has been the third most common produce item associated with foodborne illness outbreaks. Read more

Carrots

carrots

Carrots are a popular vegetable grown in all 50 states. They are naturally sweet, high in Vitamin A (β-carotene), and low in saturated fat and cholesterol. Proper washing, storage, and preservation methods are especially important with carrots since they are root vegetables (grown in soil). Several foodborne illness outbreaks have been associated with carrots and their juice. Read more

Eggs

eggs

Key Facts U.S. shell egg production totaled 7.96 billion as of June 2014, which is 3% percent higher than it was in 2013. It is estimated that for every 100 hens, 76 eggs are produced per day. A 2010 multistate outbreak of Salmonella Enteriditis was attributed to eggs following an investigation by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The source of contaminated eggs was linked to two Iowa farms and a recall of potentially affected eggs was put into effect. Between May and November 2010, approximately 2,000 illnesses resulted from this outbreak making it one Read more

Herbs

herbs

Key Facts Introduction Foodborne Outbreaks Production Food Safety Consumption References

Jalapeño Peppers

jalapenos

Key Facts The majority of the U.S. commercial jalapeño supply is grown in New Mexico, Texas, and California but many small farms throughout the southwest grow peppers for sale to local markets. Jalapeños are also imported to the U.S. and imported peppers were the source of a large Salmonella Saintpaul outbreak in 2008.       Peppers are often an ingredient used in making fresh salsa and guacamole and their role in foodborne illness outbreaks may not have been fully credited in the past. Between 1973 and 2008, 136 salsa- or guacamole-associated outbreaks were reported with over 5600 total Read more

Mushrooms

creminis

Mushrooms provide selenium and vitamins B and D. Of 300 edible species, 30 have been domesticated, and 10 are grown commercially. Wild harvest is the largest source of commercially important species, despite advances in domestication. Food safety issues with edible mushrooms are mostly due to improper food preservation and handling. Read more

Pomegranates

Photo from http://granatumplus.co.uk/

Key Facts Due to high amounts of antioxidants, vitamins, potassium, folic acid and iron, pomegranates are frequently categorized as ‘superfoods’. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) confirmed as of September 20, 2013 that approximately 162 people, primarily in the western U.S., became ill after consuming contaminated pomegranate arils. The interior of the fruit is segmented by membranous walls into compartments packed with red, pink, or white flavorful pulp-filled sacs (arils). Ready-to-eat arils in plastic cups have become popular because of their convenience, unique taste, and health benefits. Pomegranate roots and stems are not believed to be Read more

Potatoes

potatoes

Key Facts The potato is the top non-grain food crop in the world (following corn, wheat and rice) and the number one vegetable crop in the U.S. Native to South America, potatoes have been cultivated for many centuries and belong to the Solanaceae family. Potatoes are an important source of several nutrients, especially Vitamin C. A single medium sized potato provides nearly half the daily adult requirement (100 mg) of Vitamin C and it is also a source of Vitamin B6, niacin, and potassium. Pound for pound, potatoes are one of the best values in the produce Read more

Strawberries

strawberries

Strawberries are grown in every state in the U.S. and almost every country in the world. They are an excellent source of nutrients and are a great addition to a healthy diet. Strawberries have been associated with several foodborne illnesses highlighting the importance of following recommended food safety practices from the farm to the table. Read more