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Food News


THIS SECTION IS FOR NEWS AND INTERESTING STORIES RELATED TO FOOD, NUTRITION AND FOOD PROCESSING. THEY ARE NOT NECESSARILY RELATED TO KOSHER BUT MAY BE OF INTEREST TO THE KOSHER CONSUMER, MANUFACTURER OR MASHGIACH.

FDA to update rules on vitamin D fortification of plant-based dairy alternatives

July 19, 2016: from Foodnavigator.com

"The FDA is amending the food additive regulations to allow manufacturers to fortify a wider range of plant-based dairy milk alternatives and yogurt alternatives with vitamin D2, and to increase the current permitted levels of vitamin D3 in dairy milk, in response to a petition filed by Dean Foods and WhiteWave Foods."
"Currently, manufacturers are allowed to fortify soy beverages with vitamin D2 at up to 50IU/100g. After the rule change, manufacturers will be able to fortify soy, rice, almond, coconut and other plant-based beverages and yogurt intended as dairy alternatives at levels not to exceed 84IU/100g. They will also be allowed to add up to 84IU/100g of vitamin D3 to dairy milk (the current upper limit is 42IU/100g)." "The daily value for vitamin D - which is important for bone development and general health – is also increasing from 10 mcg to 20 mcg."

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W452

Arab Meat company challenges law that all meat imported into Israel must be kosher

July 18, 2016: from tabletmag.com

The Ahmad Effendi Meat Co. has petitioned the Israeli supreme court to overturn a 2004 law that all meat that is imported into Israeli must be kosher. They say that this adds 20% to the cost of imported meat.

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W451

GSI Outdoors Recalls Children’s Water Bottles Due to Violation of Lead Standard; Sold Exclusively at L.L.Bean

July 19, 2016: The CPSC

Kids’ insulated water bottles have been recalled because the lead solder at the exterior base of the bottle contains high levels of lead. Lead is toxic if ingested by young children and can cause adverse health issues.
This recall involves five styles of kids’ insulated water bottles with printed graphics. The bottles are 13.5 ounces capacity with the following color prints: Dino Bones, Flower Power, Orange Grid camo, Purple Tie Dye Butterfly and Robo Shark. The item identification number 297684 is printed on a sticker on the bottom of the bottle. Also printed on the sticker are 'PO#844' and 'BB2D2-LLB-R45-0413."
Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled water bottles and contact L.L.Bean for a full refund. Consumer Contact: L.L.Bean at 800-555-9717 from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. ET daily or online at www.llbean.com and click on “Recall & Safety Info” for more information.

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W450

Fire closes Brookline's Butcherie

July 13, 2016: The /brookline.wickedlocal.com
There was a fire at the utcherie in Brookline, MA. The fire was started by careless disposal of smoking materials in a rear storage area and caused an estimated half million dollars in damage. It is not clear when the business will reopen.

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W449

Milk Street Cafe Takes Issue with Chris Kimball’s New Venture Milk Street Kitchen

July 8, 2016: The BostonEater.com
"Marc Epstein, who owns Milk Street Cafe, is suing Christopher Kimball, who recently announced plans to open a new venture called Milk Street Kitchen on Milk Street, down the road from Milk Street Cafe."
"Epstein’s place (at 50 Milk St.) thrives on catering and has been around for 35 years, while Kimball’s (at 177 Milk St.) will be an America’s Test Kitchen 2.0 — a cooking school, a set for his forthcoming new TV show, and the birthplace of a magazine."
"Epstein apparently sent letters to Kimball asking him to change the name to no avail, prompting the lawsuit. He told the Globe there have already been instances of confusion, where people have asked if Kimball is associated with the cafe and have even applied for jobs there, thinking it is Kimball’s new venture."

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W448

Korean Gov't to foster halal, kosher industries

July 7, 2016: The The Korea Times

The (South) Korean Government announced that it will provide administrative and technical support to food and comsmetic industries to assist them in obtaining kosher and halal certification.
"To nurture the kosher industries, the government said it will first focus on expanding an understanding of the kosher market among domestic companies. So far, only about 25 companies have earned kosher certification on items such as kimchi, rice pasta and salt, which the government has attributed to lack of information on kosher foods."
"In order to address this, the government will provide food makers with kosher glossaries and lists of companies processing those. Also, it will support kosher food makers to join Kosherfest, the world's largest and most-attended kosher-certified products trade show."
The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W447

Belgian court rules shechita bans unconstitutional

June 29, 2016: The Arutz7

"A constitutional court in Belgium ruled on Wednesday that traditional Jewish shechita is permitted under Belgian law and will be allowed to continue unimpeded."
"'Restrictions on kosher shechita', the judge ruled, 'contradict basic human rights laws and religious rights in Belgium.'"
"In recent months some members of the Flemish parliament have proposed bans on kosher shechita, prohibiting exceptions to a Belgian law requiring animals be stunned before being slaughters. Such a move would effectively outlaw kosher shechita, which cannot be performed while an animal is stunned."

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W446

Tommee Tippee Electric Bottle and Food Warmers Recalled by Mayborn USA Due to Fire Hazard

June 21, 2016: The CPSC

Tommee Tippee® Closer to Nature® electric bottle and food warmers have been recalled because the warmers can overheat and catch on fire, posing a fire hazard to consumers.
This recall involves Tommee Tippee® Closer to Nature® electric bottle and food warmers, sold separately or as an accessory with the Complete Starter Kit or the All in One Newborn Set. The bottle and food warmer is white with a gray adjustable control dial located next to the on/off light. Tommee Tippee is stamped in gray on the front of the unit. It measures about 5 inches high, 5 ½ inches wide and 5 inches long. Bottle and food warmers included on this recall have "Min" or "0" stamped on the left-hand side of the control dial and have the UL logo and a six alpha-numeric batch code that begins with a number and ends with “GY” stamped on the underside. Consumers should visit www.tommeetippee.us/bottle-warmer to complete the free replacement registration form.
Consumers should immediately unplug and stop using the recalled bottle and food warmers and contact Mayborn for free replacement warmers.
Sold at Mass merchandise stores including Baby Depot, Baby Heaven, Bealls Outlet, BuyBuy Baby, CVS, Giant, Ideal Baby and Kids, Kohl’s, Marco Baby, Marshalls, Meijer, Ross Stores, Sam’s Club, Target, TJ Maxx, Toys R Us, Walgreens and Wal-Mart nationwide and online at Amazon.com, Diapers.com, Drugstore.com and Quidsi.com from July 2011 through April 2016 for about $21 for the individual bottle and food warmer and about $120 for the starter kit or newborn set.

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W445

Enough With the Gefilte Fish. I’ll Have Sushi

June 16, from the NY Times:
The NY Times just figured out what I noticed a long time ago when I saw most kosher restaurants selling sushi. Sushi is poputlar in the kosher community. They said that 80 to 90 percant of kosher restaurants sell sushi. It is popular because it is a pareve item that is easy to make kosher.

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W444

Spate of recalls doesn't mean food is more risky: expert

June 8, from the CBC Canada:
Recently there have been a lot of "recalls have involved a range of foods, including granola and other grain products, frozen vegetables and salad greens."
Martin Wiedmann, a professor of food safety at Cornell was intereviewed by the CBC:
"And he says we really are seeing far more food recalls and outbreaks these days. "But that doesn't mean our food is less safe," he noted.
"It's the opposite. What happened over the last 20 years and really accelerated over the last two years is the use of completely new DNA fingerprinting tools to detect disease outbreaks," he said.
"Today, we are 100 times more likely to detect an outbreak than we were 20 years ago."
Salad is not more 'risky' than raw milk because fewer people consume raw milk than lettuce.
"Most recalls are precautionary and the products haven't actually made anyone sick."
" 148 shares Canadians have seen a spate of food recalls lately, thanks to possible Listeria and E. coli contamination. The recalls have involved a range of foods, including granola and other grain products, frozen vegetables and salad greens. Quaker Harvest brand granola bars recalled over Listeria concerns Listeria recall: frozen foods list for Canada Listeriosis outbreak in packaged salad highlights risk of lettuce If it seems to you like these recalls are a dime a dozen these days, you're not imagining things, says Martin Wiedmann. He's a professor of food safety at Cornell University's food science department. And he says we really are seeing far more food recalls and outbreaks these days. "But that doesn't mean our food is less safe," he noted. "It's the opposite. What happened over the last 20 years and really accelerated over the last two years is the use of completely new DNA fingerprinting tools to detect disease outbreaks," he said. "Today, we are 100 times more likely to detect an outbreak than we were 20 years ago." Cornell University's Martin Wiedmann Cornell University food safety expert Martin Wiedmann says we're seeing more food recalls thanks to better testing. (Jason Koski/Cornell University) Health officials have developed a system to track the genetic makeup of salmonella, Listeria and E.coli. Once a food-related illness outbreak is identified, scientists can match the DNA from contaminated food with the bacteria making people sick, and potentially trace it to the originating food processing plant. Is salad more 'risky' than raw milk? A lot of the recalls we're seeing now seem to apply to foods that aren't traditionally associated with bacterial contamination, like granola. But traditional wisdom, and modern public health rules, steer at-risk consumers (including children, older adults, pregnant women, and those with a weakened immune system) away from unpasteurized cheese. Pregnant women are told to avoid sushi. And hold off on pre-sliced deli meat, health officials say, because it might be tainted with Listeria. In light of that long list of recalls, and the fact that we're detecting more outbreaks, shouldn't they also be steering us away from salad and cantaloupes? After all, based on the recalls, they might sound like risky foods. Wiedmann says that's not really so. He points to the reason we see few cases of issues arising from raw milk consumption as an example of why. "Much, much fewer people consume raw milk," he said. "So we don't hear much about raw milk outbreaks. But we hear about outbreaks with lettuce, so [people think] lettuce must be less safe. Quite the opposite, because you need to consider the total amount of the food produced — what is your chance of getting sick from eating one of these servings." Most recalls precautionary Wiedmann also points out tha. A recall isn't the same as an outbreak. In most cases, food recalls are precautionary, and the products haven't actually made anyone sick."
"We call them outbreaks now because we can easily link a specific product in California, for example, with a handful of sick people in separate provinces or states, thanks to the DNA fingerprinting Wiedmann mentioned."
"The bottom line, he says, is that those high-risk products health officials advise against, like unpasteurized cheese, are actually riskier than the products making news headlines."
"It's just not like 'risk' or 'no-risk.' There's a gradation... And then somewhere in the middle, someone puts a line," he said.
"And that line is arbitrary, because no food is risk free."

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W443
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