As of Sept. 30, 2019, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has tested 1,214 fresh herb samples (746 domestic, 468 imported). And as of Oct. 15, 2019, the FDA has tested 887 processed avocado or guacamole samples (777 domestic, 110 imported).
Of the fresh herb samples, 13 tested positive for Salmonella (four domestic, nine imported), and nine tested positive for Shiga-toxin producing E. coli (STEC) (four domestic, five imported). Further study showed that the STEC were incapable of causing severe illness.
The FDA did not detect E. coli O157:H7 in any of the fresh herb samples. The agency also began testing its fresh herb samples for Cyclospora cayetanensis in July 2018, given that Cyclospora-related illnesses typically occur during the summer. The agency detected Cyclospora in 16 of the 666 fresh herbs samples tested (four domestic, 12 imported). The FDA continues to test more herb samples, so no conclusions can be drawn at this time.
Of the processed avocado or guacamole samples, 15 tested positive for Listeria monocytogenes (13 domestic, two imported), and two tested positive for Salmonella (both domestic samples). The FDA concluded its collection of processed avocado and guacamole samples with the close of fiscal year 2019. The FDA has recently begun its analysis of the processed avocado and guacamole samples, and the results will be published in the final report.
Nestlé Waters has announced that the entire plastic bottle range for the Swiss mineral water brand Henniez is now made of 75% recycled PET plastic (rPET).
Ardent Mills, a flour-milling and ingredient company, has announced its acquisition of Andean Naturals’ quinoa sourcing, cleaning, and packaging operation in Yuba City, Calif.
Dow has launched its call for entries for the 2020 Packaging Innovation Awards, an annual competition to recognize original thinking that is transforming the packaging landscape through enhanced user experience and improved sustainability.
The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has launched the United Nations’ International Year of Plant Health (IYPH) for 2020, which aims to raise global awareness on how protecting plant health can help end hunger, reduce poverty, protect the environment, and boost economic development.
A study published in the American Journal of Agricultural Economics calculated that American households waste, on average, almost a third of the food they acquire—a value of $240 billion annually or $1,800+ per household/year.