from the urls-we-dig-up dept
Penicillin and its derivatives haven’t actually been around for that long in the scheme of things, but antibiotics have enabled an incredible age of prosperity without people having to worry about common infections killing us off. Unfortunately, nature has a way of evolving and adapting to our not-so-clever use of antibiotics, and we’ve been breeding superbugs in our hospitals and in our industrialized food chain. Sketchy meats have been around for a long time, but hopefully, it won’t take a public health nightmare to get folks to take a closer look at food safety.
- The overuse of antibiotics in the meat industry could be creating superbugs in our food chain — and a surprising amount of these resistant microbes are already in commercial foods. Consumer Reports looked at a variety of meat samples and found over 80% of the turkey meat it tested contained superbugs. Ugh. Cook your Turkeys thoroughly next Thanksgiving…. [url]
- The 1993 E. coli outbreak from hamburger meat killed at least four kids and poisoned hundreds of people. That outbreak was followed years later by other infectious contamination in produce, cheese and cookie dough… and the food safety system still isn’t perfect. Salmonella in chicken is another potential problem, and the food industry is responding — though perhaps a bit slower than some would like. [url]
- Bacteriophages as biocontrol agents in foods were approved by the FDA in 2006, but it’s not approved for infant formula. Bacteriophages — viruses that specifically attack bacteria — are abundant everywhere, so they’re presumably safe and environmentally friendly — and could prevent babies from getting terrible illnesses. These phages could be an important tool to combat food-borne microbes, but we may still want to be careful not to over-use them or over-engineer them to the point that they might attack microbes indiscriminately. [url]
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