- About Us — Food Safety Talk - episode zero link found here
- Food Safety Talk
- Lifting the lid on toilet plume aerosol: a literature review with suggestions for future research
- The Vomiting Machine: How Researchers Are Using Fake Barf to Help Protect Public Health
- Prevalence of Human Noroviruses in Commercial Food Establishment Bathrooms
- Multistate Outbreak of Salmonella Mbandaka Infections Linked to Kellogg’s Honey Smacks Cereal (Final Update) | Multistate Outbreak of Salmonella Mbandaka Infections Linked to Honey Smacks Cereal
- Recalls, Market Withdrawals, & Safety Alerts > Kellogg Company Voluntarily Recalls Honey Smacks Cereal Due to Possible Health Risk
- Salmonella Saintpaul Infections Linked to Raw Produce
- Jensen Farms Rocky Ford Cantaloupe Listeria Outbreak | About Listeria
- Pomegranate arils from Egypt blamed in hepatitis A outbreak | Food Safety News
- An Outbreak Of Listeriosis Has Been Linked To Cantaloupes
Filtering by Tag: Norovirus
The show opens with a deep dive on Ben's adventures before during and after hurricane Florence. From there the guys proceed through listener feedback talking about cured meats, dried food debris, microbiological quality of money, kitchen sanitation, revisiting Ben's recent experience with human subjects, revisiting how to learn more about the organism that may have made you sick, pasteurizing eggs, exclusion of ill workers, thermometer calibration, and food out of temperature control. The show ends with discussion of a recent scholarly article on raw milk outbreaks, as well as a news article on an E. coli outbreak at a daycare center.
- Hurricane Florence - Wikipedia
- Leave a Coin on a Cup of Ice Before Leaving Home to See If the Power Went Out While You Were Away
- NC State Charcuterie School Teaches Art, Science of Cured Meats | College of Agriculture and Life Sciences | NC State University
- Surface sanitation and microbiological food quality of a university foodservice operation 1996
- Handbook of Fermented Meat and Poultry, 2nd Edition - Wiley
- Meat Fermentations Lecture.pdf - NCSU Charcuterie School Fermented and Dry Sausage Dana J Hanson Associate Professor of Food Science North Carolina
- Amazon.com: Matfer Bourgeat 062005 Black Steel Round Frying Pan, 11 7/8-Inch, Gray: Skillets: Kitchen & Dining
- Dirty Money: An Investigation into the Hygiene Status of Some of the World's Currencies as Obtained from Food Outlets | Foodborne Pathogens and Disease
- Handling money and serving ready‐to‐eat food - Michaels - 2002 - Food Service Technology - Wiley Online Library
- Fate of Escherichia coli O157:H7 and Salmonella Enteritidis on Currency | Journal of Food Protection
- Aladdin Sane - Wikipedia
- Food Safety for Farmers Markets: A Guide to Enhancing Safety of Local Foods | Judy A. Harrison | Springer
- Reduction of faecal coliform, coliform and heterotrophic plate count bacteria in the household kitchen and bathroom by disinfection...
- Outbreaks > FDA Investigation of Multistate Outbreak of Cyclospora Illnesses Linked to Del Monte Vegetable Trays Ends
- FOIA.gov - Freedom of Information Act: How to make a FOIA request
- Development of a quantitative risk assessment model for Salmonella enteritidis in pasteurized liquid eggs. - PubMed - NCBI
- Guidelines for restaurant sous vide cooking safety in British Columbia
- Sous vide style cooking practices linked to Salmonella Enteritidis illnesses
- Sushi rice acidification
- Food Safety Scares Are Up In 2018. Here's Why You Shouldn't Freak Out | New Hampshire Public Radio
- Food Workers Working When They Are Sick | EHS-Net | EHS | CDC
- Population-level impacts of excluding norovirus infected food workers: a mathematical modeling study | American Journal of Epidemiology
- Kitchen Confidential Updated Edition: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly (P.S.): Anthony Bourdain: 9780060899226: Amazon.com: Books
- Fluke- Triple Point of Water Cells
- CFP Emergency Action Plan for Retail Food Establishments Second Edition
- Recent Trends in Unpasteurized Fluid Milk Outbreaks, Legalization, and Consumption in the United States – PLOS Currents Outbreaks
- Science, or ‘scapegoat’? E. coli outbreak leaves day-care owners frustrated
In keeping with our current practive, here is a bulleted list of link to the topics we mentioned on the show:
- Cyndi Lauper - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
- Caddyshack (1980) - IMDb
- Gunga Galunga clip on YouTube
- Veronica Bryant (@NoroNerd) on Twitter
- Conference for Food Protection - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
- Noro Couch (@norocouch) on Twitter
- Barbara Kowalcyk and CFI
- Farm To Table Talk podcast, @FarmToTableTalk on Twitter
- A Pissed-Off Tampa Chef Explains The “Farm To Fable” Controversy on Food Republic
- At Tampa Bay farm-to-table restaurants, you’re being fed fiction, Farm to Fable from the Tampa Bay Times
- Farm to Fable discussion featuring Laura Reiley on Farm To Table Talk podcast on SoundCloud
- What is Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)?
- Philly's newest takeout option: Food from a stranger's kitchen
- Omar "It's all in the game" on YouTube
- 2016 Biennial Meeting of the Conference for Food Protection
- Conference for Food Protection, Issues for Council I pdf, Ben's issue was 2016 I-037
- Conference for Food Protection, Issues for Council III pdf, Ben's issue was 2016 III-017
- The Right Way to Wash Your Hands according to the WSJ, anyway
- A Pragmatic Randomized Controlled Trial of 6-Step vs 3-Step Hand Hygiene Technique in Acute Hospital Care in the United Kingdom
- A meta-analysis of the published literature on the effectiveness of antimicrobial soaps
- Daring Fireball comment on Dyson Hand Dryers post on Ars
- Joe Smith's excellent TED talk on How to use a paper towel
- Using a Dyson hand dryer is like setting off a viral bomb in a bathroom from Ars Technica
- Evaluation of the potential for virus dispersal during hand drying: a comparison of three methods from the Journal of Applied Microbiology
- Big Tissue wants you to believe bathroom hand dryers spread disease. Here's what science says. from Vox
- Julia Belluz (@juliaoftoronto) onTwitter
- Effects of 4 hand-drying methods for removing bacteria from washed hands: a randomized trial.
- Hamburger buns found stored next to toilet at Checkers restaurant fromWRCBtv.com
- Everyone’s got a camera: Hamburger buns stored next to toilet at Tennessee Checkers from barfblog
This week Don and Ben open with the usual popular culture talk and then move into a discussion of Norovirus laden couches, Chipotle (again), and the safety of petting zoos. From there the discussion moves to lady balls, duck sliders, balls to the wall, and Blue Bell Ice Cream. The After Dark features more cowbell.
Below are some links to some of the things that they talked about:
- New Jersey State Grange
- Barry Gibb Official Website
- River (TV series) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
- House of Cards (season 4) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
- True Grit (2010) on iTunes
- The Hunt for Red October (1990) - IMDb
- Veronica Bryant (@NoroNerd) | Twitter
- Desk Bell on the App Store
- Service Bell on the App Store
- Guideline for the Prevention and Control of Norovirus Gastroenteritis Outbreaks in Healthcare Settings
- Stigma is hard to shake: Chipotle edition, from barfblog
- Chipotle Considering Rolling Back New Food Safety Changes
- IEH Labs
- Ben's department: NC State University Department of Youth, Family, and Community Sciences
- Chipotle founders letter
- More victims anticipated in E. coli outbreak linked to goat farm, from Food Safety News
- Ben's colleague Megan Jacob at NC State in Veterinary Medicine
- Observation of public health risk behaviours, risk communication and hand hygiene at Kansas and Missouri petting zoos
- Lady Balls Science
- Your dog wants duck batch sliders; but without Listeria and Salmonella | barfblog
- Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams
- Balls to the wall Cynthia Decker, Ph.D. from Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams
- Blue Bell reports on root causes of five-year Listeria outbreak
- FDA Bell Bell root cause analysis
- Blue Bell to return Aug. 31, faces new lawsuit
- The official bell of Food Safety Talk on Amazon.com
- Need more cowbell!
Ben begins the podcast by praising Everything Zen. He then recounted an incident where he dropped the iPhone in the toilet and discovered that it was not waterproof. The conversation continues with talk about family vacations, The Wire, Making a Murderer, Jessica Jones, The Affair, Death in Paradise, and Star Wars. The guys reminisce about Food Safety Talk 85, (I am the Jerky Police) as Ben talks about a Beef Jerky outlet near his house.
The guys talk about Chipotle (again) and FDA’s report that two Chipotle outbreaks were linked to two different strains of E. coli O26. Don predicts at least one more Chipotle-related outbreak in 2016, while Ben predicts zero. The guys weigh in on claims that Chipotle was a victim of cooperate sabotage in retaliation for their anti-GMO menu. The guys also offer their thoughts on Chipotle’s decision to fire Norovirus infected employees and managers. Ben thinks that both the Chipotle outbreak and the recent Blue Bell incident are learning opportunities on what not to do.
The discussion turns to a recent paper by Larry Beuchat on the survival of Salmonella in cookies and cracker sandwiches, as well as an older paper by Scheinberg and others on the pathogens in poultry in farmers markets.
They conclude with a discussion on science communication.
Don and Ben start the show by talking about the drastic weather in Raleigh, NC and Freehold, NJ. They quickly changed topics to beverage preferences, including Starbucks and eggnog. Ben notes he is not a fan of eggnog although his grandparents used to drink consistently. Ben also reminisces about other old-timey eating habits including pickled beets, and buttermilk. Don will stick with eggnog plus whiskey during the holiday season. Ben shared his excitement about a Sloan concert that he recently attended with his wife. Ben also mentioned a thoughtful gift that he received from his wife: a poet (Matthew) wrote a poem for Ben on the topic of barf and Ben was very thrilled. Don also shared his excitement as well as he recently celebrated his birthday, and Merlin gave him a shout out on his podcast.
Twenty minutes in, food safety talk officially began and Ben commented on a blog post where the interviewed the research chief of ABC Research laboratories. She was interviewed about raw honey and recommended honey pasteurization to prevent infant botulism. Ben disagreed with her statement, and noted that pasteurization does not destroy the spores present in honey. Don supported Ben and added that pasteurization is even less effective in low water activity foods like peanut butter or honey. According to this fact sheet, honey is pasteurized to reduce the likelihood of fermentation and crystallization over time.
Don turned the topic to Ebola in the US, and mentioned Peter Sandman’s post on The public health establishment and the quarantine debate. Sandman complained about how the US handled the Ebola issue. Ben agreed with some (not all) of the post and concluded that risk talk should always be frank.
From Ebola the topic turned to Hepatitis E as an emerging foodborne disease. A UK article stated, 1 in 10 sausage carries the risk of Hepatitis E, which seems high to Ben and Don. Don thought that Hepatitis E in the UK might be a worker sanitation issue. Both guys were intrigued by the apparent low risk of Hepatitis E in the US. Peer reviewed research published in Epidemiology and Infection states that Hepatitis E is associated with unprocessed sausage, and 90% of British pigs have exposed to Hepatitis E and produce antibodies. Cooking suggestion including cooking for 20 min at 70 °C or better yet, using a thermometer.
Don mentioned a recent contact by a local company asking about safe practices for cooked brown rice preparation. Although the company had a detailed and meticulous workflow, additional information (like product time and temperature) would be needed to insure control of Bacillus cereus, according to Ben.
Despite raw milk drinker's hatred of epidemiologists, Don confessed that maybe he wants to be an epidemiologist, while Ben noted that he has admired them ever since the Jalapeno Saintpaul outbreak. Don also praised Petran, White and Hedberg, for their efforts to identify what items in a restaurant inspection were predictive of the possibility of an outbreak, and Ben's comments to USA Today on the topic.
A quick round of "I think you're thinking of" with Howard Dean, and Roger Dean, not to be confused with Roger Dean followed. The guys then hopped back in time with the whizzinator before moving on to food storage mistakes and tortilla safety as prompted by Listener John Kimble.
The guys covered the 1990's in the IAFP history segment, which also featured a discussion of 808, the Beastie Boys and the speed of Joe Walsh's Maserati. Ben identified the 1990's with the adoption of PFGE and rapid methods, while Don though the Mega Regs characterized the time. Ben recalled a recent discussion with Cathy Cutter about meat processing and how HACCP shaped other food safety regulations.
The discussion then turned to Norovirus, prompted by a couple of recent noro outbreaks on the "Explorer of the Seas" and the Caribbean Princess, the boat that Chris Gunter boarded. Unfortunately, Chris couldn't find out whether the hand sanitizer on the ship was the one that works, though he was assured that it was "alcohol based". Ben wrapped up the noro discussion with the MoChunk resort outbreak. The guys talked about Netflix in the short after dark.
The guys started the show dreaming about a Red Mac Pro. They then turned to the passing of Bill Keene. Bill has been mentioned in various FST episodes and was a well respected epidemiologist as seen in the articles by the Oregonian and Doug Powell. The guys then turned to their beverages, Coffee Club, Napoleon Dynamite, Homeland, and Car Talk. Ben shared his preference for Aussie Rule football and Arcade Fire's album Reflektor. The conversation then turned to Don's limited iPhone music library, Privateering and Dire Straights, which reminded Ben of Money for Nothing and WWE Wrestling (not WWF Wrestling). To finish they talked about Christmas music, Bad Religion's Christmas Songs, Coulton and Roderick's One Christmas at a Time and Horrible Christmas songs.
The discussion then turned back to Bill Keene and some of the outbreaks he had been involved in. This included a Salmonella Panama outbreak (not to be confused with Van Halen's Panama), which was the first outbreak that was solved through the innovative use of supermarket loyalty cards and that Bill and others were sued for (the lawsuit was eventually dropped.. The guys then discussed outbreak investigation in some detail and that public health officials are damned if they do and damned if they don't name commodities and suppliers. There is of course always a risk of getting the epidemiology wrong, as was the case with Salmonella Saintpaul in peppers. Finally, Bill's investigation of a Norovirus outbreak reminded Ben of a recent Norovirus outbreak in Las Vegas.
Then Ben commented on an exchange with Chris Gunter, who was presenting on traceability for small producers at the 2013 Strawberry Expo. Chris' presentation is based on the investigation of an E. coli O157 outbreak related to strawberries, in which Bill Keene played a part.
After congratulating Don on his birthday, the guys talked about their recent travels, including 10 slaca, the 3rd Asia Pacific International Conference on Food Safety, the China International Food Safety & Quality Conference & Expo, and then they compared their favorite David Tharp stories.
In follow up to FST 49: Less Risky Bathroom Event, Don shared some information about the microbiome of urine though he couldn't comment on which way to wipe. Ben also asked Don about the hygiene of hockey locker rooms, which was prompted by Pekka Rinne's E. coli infection. The discussion about locker rooms then reminded Ben about a big Norovirus outbreak of basketball players and Don that his student Hanna will be visiting some public bathrooms as part of the NoroCore project. And somehow the conversation turned to North America's most photogenic Major Rob Ford, aka Major McCrack.
In the Food Safety History segment, Don returned to the 1940's of IAFP's history, where advances in food safety were largely due to the requirements for supplying troops in World War II. This was not the first time that great advances in food safety were made in response to military needs, see for example the invention of canning.
Ben then wanted to talk about road kill, which has earned him the title of Dr Roadkill. This discussion originated from this recent article about a planned Montana permit system for salvaging road kill. The guys didn't agree with Fred Pritzker's arguments against the system.
The discussion then turned to the FDA Risk Profile Pathogen and Filth in Spices. The guys were disappointed by the Spice Producers response. It reminded them about the importance of good risk communication. Foster Farms provided another example of 'not to get it quite right', who added to their recent woes by showing that they can't count. Don wondered about their social media strategy and why so many media managers are dipsh*ts.
To finish off the guys prepared for Thanksgiving with a Lifehacker article on leftovers. While the article was OK, the comments made their stomachs turn. Clearly they need to continue their battle to fix the internet one comment at a time.
In the after dark the guys discussed the latest OS X Mavericks upgrade, the TV show Veep, rejecting journal articles, Ben becoming a grumpy old man, Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, End of the World, Adventure Time (Season 3)), Bronies and the Pulling the String podcast.
The guys started the show with a Flamingo flash back, Don's iTunes Radio "Grateful Dead" channel experiment (sans Katy Perry and Kanye West), New Girl with Zooey Deschanel, She & Him, Steve Earle, The Walking Dead, the Pulling the String podcast, and The Lone Ranger.
Ben then turned to an NPR article about the Niche Meat Processor Assistance Network and a Kickstarter campaign to create an open source HACCP plan. This lead into a broader discussion of the work undertaken by extension specialists, Don's 'useless' Twitter exchange and how to find out about food safety using Let Me Google That For You.
In the Food Safety History segment, Don shared information from the IAFP History book about the 1950's and an increased focus on preventing foodborne illness.
Don then returned to his recent Twitter exchange about hand washing with @Frankly and @danbenjamin, which included this article from About.com. The article, which referenced unpublished work from 2000 by Barbara Almanza on hand sanitizers, got the guys fired up about the regulatory system and undertaking effective research on the assessing the efficacy of hand sanitizers. After taking yet another detour into the world of The Wire, the guys returned to hand sanitizers and discussed some research articles, including:
To finish this monster show, the guys briefly touched on Foster Farms fiasco, which they've kept on their list of things to discuss next time.
By the time the after dark came around Don was contemplating a career in pottery, while Ben favored rolling cigars for a living.
The guys started with some follow up on The Wire, The Newsroom, what colored food does to your poop, Mike Batz’ link to Craig Goldwyn’s Huffington Post article on sprouts, T. gondii in Romanian animals, and F’ed up.
Aaron’s email then prompted a discussion about Plague Inc., the CDC’s interest in it and CDC’s own game Solve the Outbreak. The guys were impressed by how progressive the CDC is in terms of social media and new ways of engaging the public.
Don then provided some info about HDScores a company that plans to make Restaurant Inspection Scores from 3100 jurisdictions from the US, Canada and UK widely available. This prompted a discussion about making restaurant scores available to the public in an interpretable way.
Ben shared his experiences from a recent trip to Calgary, where his 4 year old son Jack got sick, possibly with Norovirus. Ben was fascinated by Delta Airlines’ approach of dealing with the vomit problem, which involved plastic bags to contain the risk and coffee pods to manage the smell. Don was familiar with the approach thanks to Roderick on the Line. Ben didn’t agree with Delta’s decision to take them off plane first (thus inoculating the plane). It reminded him of two different articles. Both Don and Ben were glad Delta had a plan, even if they didn’t quite agree with the whole plan.
Don then wanted to ask Ben about a Meatingplace article by Richard Raymond entitled Is our food safer than five years ago? (free registration needed to read). Ben explained why he didn’t agree with Richard’s arguments. Don agreed and asked aloud about conspiracy theories, not dissimilar from those surrounding New Coke.
Don then wanted get Ben’s take on the IFT’s March 2013 media update. In fact both Ben and Don thought that these updates were way over the top and it reminded them of "The louder he talked of his honor, the faster we counted our spoons” and Doug Powell’s comment on Barfblog “I'm immediately suspicious of people … who say trust me.” Ben especially didn’t like that organizations say “trust us” and without telling people what the risks are and why they should be trusted. The discussion of food processing reminded Don of Richard Wrangham’s great book "Catching Fire: How Cooking Made Us Human.”
The last thing on Ben’s agenda was Doug’s comparison between the porn industry and the food industry, which had resulted in a fair bit of backlash against the legendary Doug. Ben noted that Doug’s point was how the two industries differed in how they manage the risks, which people missed. And boy… you mention porn and people get excited.
After some initial expected Skype problems the guys talked about a range of topics including their favorite beers, Apple phobias, The Wire, about (not) working from home and Telecommuting policies, writing papers using DragonDictate, Don’s Squarespace 6 trial and Ben’s The Newsroom sharing system.
The guys then critiqued some obfuscated food safety messages about Listeria put out by the Partnership for Food Safety Education. The discussion then turned to the horse meat scandal and that audits are a tool rather than the tool. This reminded Don of the Chinese melamine incident and labeling fraud.
The guys then took a short podcasting detour to Scott Simpson’s Your Monkey Called article for The Magazine entitled You’re boring. It made them think about the stories they are trying to tell in podcast episodes, blog articles or presentations.
This reminded Ben of the story of Ashley’s lack of emotion to a Norovirus outbreak on UNC campus, but we don’t know how she would react to Carolyn Dunn’s story on Food Myths and Memes of no baby carrots. This turned into a chat about kale, Brussels sprouts, beets, asparagus and bodily functions.
Ben then shared his surprise of reading about accelerated aging canned food, which prompted Don to think about a couple of early food science books – Ted Labuza’s “Shelf-Life Dating of Foods” and Harold McGee’s “Curious Cook.” Though Don wasn’t too keen on the idea of aging canned food.
The guys then wondered about how a Michigan firm could be operating without a HACCP plan and the subsequent recall. Don then got grumpy about Candy eggs that have all been cleared of Salmonella. Then Ben got on his favorite soap box about the lack of information that is being provided.
Ben was in a holiday mood after spending time in Florida and catching up with friend of the show, Michelle Danyluk. He also met up with Doug Powell for the annual barfblog editorial team meeting and had lunch with Bert Mitchell. The guys exchanged their holiday MP3 picks, including Sloan’s Merry X’mas Everybody and Jonathan Coulton & John Roderick’s Christmas in Jail. Some non-Christmas and non-food safety-related ramblings included The Good Lovelies, The Comic Book Club of Ithaca, Doctor Doom, Teen Titans, the comiXology app, and Saga.
The guys then talked food safety communication and Ben praised this system for restaurant inspection disclosure, as well as jurisdictional approaches (such as this one in Plano) that provide access to restaurant inspection histories. Don was excited about "Variability Among States in Investigating Foodborne Disease Outbreaks", but felt let down as there was little information about the reason for this variability. Ben and Don wondered whether it had to do with the caliber of epidemiologists – or was it related to how hard they were looking for foodborne illness problems and the things that define their food safety culture?
The discussion then turned to smartphone apps, which was prompted by Ben’s barfblog article about a soon to be released app by Food Sentry. The guys were curious about what they’d be getting for the subscription fee and how rankings were magically created, and noted that some of the information is already publically available through the FDA’s Product Recalls app and others. The serious discussion about risk rankings quickly degraded into poop-a-licious fun with the Poop the World app. While Don was a little freaked out he was pleased that the app included a hand washing reminder. Ben was wondering whether the data could be used similar to Google’s Flu Trends to identify and track food borne illness outbreaks.
The guys then talked about several food safety related papers, including a paper co-authored by Don entitled “Fate of Escherichia coli O157:H7, Listeria monocytogenes, and Salmonella on fresh-cut celery”. The second paper was “Efficacies of Sodium Hypochlorite and Quaternary Ammonium Sanitizers for Reduction of Norovirus and Selected Bacteria during Ware-Washing Operations” and Ben wondered what the implications for cleaning up after a vomiting event in a restaurant setting are (like the one Ben lived through in Episode 22). The article “Outbreaks of Acute Gastroenteritis Transmitted by Person-to-Person Contact – United States, 2009-2010” blew Don’s mind as he found at that the CDC was not tracking person-to-person transmission of acute gastroenteritis prior to implementation of the National Outbreak Reporting System (NORS) in 2009.
The guys then finished off talking about some recent Kansas City Star articles about the beef industry, especially one about problems with needle tenderised beef, as well as the recent barfblog article about a paper on food safety and social media.
Don was excited that Chuck Haas and Aamir Fazil are now listening to the podcast and he invited listeners to comment on the discussion during the show. They guys also urged listeners rate the podcast on iTunes.
In the after dark, Don told Ben about the Spaceteam app, which he wants to play with Ben and Mike Batz (like these guys). And planning a Skype call between the guys and Andreas in Australia was proving a little difficult, because of the time difference.
The guys jumped right into the deep end and discussed the risks, or perceived risks, associated with salad bars and whether irrigation water or someone sneezing over the salad would pose a bigger risk. The guys also chatted about Don’s recent apparent food poisoning, new listeners to the podcast and Ben’s musical taste. Ben also admitted to being hooked on The Wire.
The discussion then turned to a barfblog article about research articles by Petran et al. on restaurant inspection, entitled “Health department inspection criteria more likely to be associated with outbreak restaurants in Minnesota” and “Using a theoretical predictive tool for the analysis of recent health department inspections at outbreak restaurants and relation of this information to foodborne illness likelihood”. While restaurant inspection per se may not improve public health, Petran et al. investigated whether the answers to specific inspection questions would help predict whether a given restaurant is at increased risk of a foodborne illness outbreak. The guys specifically discussed Table 4 of the first article, available here, which looked at the risk of norovirus, Salmonella or Clostridium perfringens outbreaks as related to different inspection questions.
Ben and Don then turned their attention to the recent Multistate Outbreak of Salmonella Bredeney Infections Linked to Peanut Butter Manufactured By Sunland. This isn’t the first time that Salmonella and peanut butter caused trouble – previous examples include this this 2006/7 outbreak and this 2008/9 outbreak. As a result of the Sunland Outbreak, IAFP will be running a webinar on Best Practices in Peanut Butter and Peanut Production. Don noted the challenge wasn’t a lack of knowledge of how to control Salmonella in peanuts, but getting the information to those who most need it. Ben was particularly critical of companies who have testing schemes on which their food safety programs are built, but which continue to ship product despite detecting 9 different Salmonella strains. Ben also noted that denying test results is counterproductive when the epidemiological evidence is pointing at your product. A better communications approach was discussed in Food Safety Talk 25 in relation to the Salmonella outbreak linked with cantaloupe.
Don shared about his recent food poisoning in Hawaii, and noted that while foodborne outbreak investigations in Hawaii might be good, publicizing anything related to outbreaks wasn’t good for tourism. This reminded Ben of the heightened requirements for vendors at farmers markets in Hawaii. Don mentioned his dinner with Linda Harris, and her comment that the all of Hawaii fell under the Tester Amendment of the FSMA Act.
This brought to guys to an article that Don had recently reviewed, which had made him query who does the work of cooperative extension in Canada. Ben provided a bit of history and his understanding of the current situation. Ben believed that it fell mainly to the regulatory authorities, for example Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health. Don was worried that this was likely to result in important research findings not being developed into useful extension programs, especially with the influx of Canadian food safety extension specialists invading the US.
In the After Dark, Don talked a bit more about his trip to Hawaii and how he got so angry on his first night. The guys talked about their Thanksgiving plans and they finished where they started: Chick-fil-A.
Don and Ben started the show with the compulsory technology discussion. The guys were excited about being up-to-date with publishing previous episodes and that the show was attracting new listeners. Don noted that any listener who would like a Food Safety Talk fridge magnet should email him. He also requested that listeners rate the show and leave a comment on iTunes.
The guys then talked about the Annual Bridge School Benefit Concert, including The Flaming Lips, and their cover of the Pink Floyd's 'The Dark Side of The Moon', She Don't Use Jelly and Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots.
The discussion then turned to the efficacy of hand washing versus hand sanitizers. A question was posed by a North Carolina extension agent and was related to the recent E. coli O157:H7 outbreak associated with animal contact at a North Carolina fair. Don noted that the CDC recommends the use of hand sanitizers in hospitals as an alternative to hand washing, although FDA does not currently recommend this in restaurants. Don mentioned his publication on the efficacy of alcohol-based hand sanitizer during frozen burger handling. Don felt that hand sanitizers would be beneficial when there are no hand washing facilities available, though he also questioned the risk of petting zoos and whether they can be made safer. Ben cautioned that sanitizers may not work equally well for all microorganisms, but that it was still a good tool in the face of low hand washing compliance. Don agreed and stressed that the important point wasn’t the comparison of efficacy between sanitizers with hand washing, but the effect on overall public health.
The guys then turned their attention to recent XL Beef related E. coli O157 outbreak and recall. Don questioned the lack of common sense when E. coli O157 is detected in many combo bins on a single day. XL Beef simply followed the apparently standard practice of rejecting the affected combo bin as well as the one before and after, despite many combo bins yielding E. coli O157 detections. Apparently nobody had realized that XL beef had hit what FSIS refer to as a High Event Period.
Ben then talked about a recent interview where he was asked about the impact of centralized food processing on food safety and public health. Ben and Don agreed that mistakes in large organizations can result in large public health problems. However, they also thought it more likely for smaller companies to screw up, because it may harder for them to stay up-to-date, and that any subsequent illnesses are more likely to fly under the public health radar, or track back to the source.
The discussion then focused on the large norovirus outbreak in Germany which was linked to frozen strawberries and Ben highlighted the finger-pointing that goes on between companies or countries at such times. While epidemiology pointed at the strawberries, the Chinese government maintained that 'No viruses [were] found' on berries blamed for food poisoning, though Ben wondered which companies were actively looking for norovirus in food.
The guys then discussed the case of a 7 year old who died after kissing her grandfather who was sick with E. coli O157. It reminded Don of the book “Poisoned” and the earlier discussion of petting zoos – a combination of increased risk, young children and potential lack of hand washing.
Ben and Don started the podcast with a discussion about Lego. Ben has finally started his homework – watching Episode 1 from Season 1 of The Wire. This evolved into a discussion of music, including Tom Waits, Neil and Pegi Young’s Annual Bridge School Benefit Concert and the Kronos Quartet. Then Don had little Skype hiccup, which turned out to be pibcak.
The guys then turned their attention to food safety and Don started it off with a mention of Back to Work, Episode 85: "Schrödinger's Soap Holder", which focused on safely navigating a public restroom with or without hot water, soap and paper towels. After a short sports excursion, including a walk down “No-Hockey Lane” (which apparently had Michele Catalano fired up) the guys found their unique spiritual connection… through peanut butter, but not jelly. Andreas suggested Aussie Rules in the event there is no hockey.
The discussion then focused on the current peanut butter related illness outbreak and related recalls. Ben wondered allowed how a regulatory agency might determine the period of production that is to be recalled. Don guessed that it was related to the company being able to document the last comprehensive cleanup. A potential difficulty for this relates to the use of rework, as seen with the ever-expanding Hudson beef recall. While knowing how recall decisions are made may not be of interest to everyone, but Ben noted that this information would be useful to other companies who face recall decisions in the future.
Ben then asked about the magnitude of the risk of Salmonella in peanut butter as he hadn’t seen any published risk assessment. Don guessed that it was low (relative to many types of produce) because the Microbiological Data Program 2009 data summary didn’t show any Salmonella detections in 1542 peanut butter samples. Don then raised the issue that the MDP recalls were never or rarely linked to outbreaks. He was particularly interested in this because of an upcoming talk he was preparing, in which he combined prevalence estimates from the MDP 2009 data, under-reporting estimates from the Scallan et al article, and a rough dose-response estimate. Don’s reasoning indicates that it’s not surprising that the MDP program would result in detections (and hence recalls) that aren’t linked to outbreaks.
Using the example of cilantro, which had many detections of Salmonella reported in the 2009 MDP data, Ben noted that he would really like to know more about where and how the hazard is introduced into the product. Don then suggested that a better way of reporting the MDP results would be to report the positive rate, rather than just the number of positives, as clearly the denominator is important.
Ben then mentioned the current large norovirus outbreak in Germany, where more than 8400 children have shown symptoms. Ben hypothesized that it might be related to water in a fresh produce washing and packing plant. Turns out he might just be right since frozen strawberries have now been implicated. Ben wasn’t sure whether a surveillance program like the MDP would ever detect viruses in fresh produce, and while he accepted the utility of the MDP he was also sure that it could be improved.
Ben then discussed his recent experience of visiting Jeanne Gleeson, Barb Chamberlain and their army of programmers, who produced Ninja Kitchen. He was talking to them about producing stop motion animations to illustrate how and where hazards are introduced into the fresh produce supply chain – from farm to the consumer. Ben is keen on using these for educational presentations to producers as well as consumers shopping at farmers markets. This reminded Don of the norovirus cross-contamination modeling work his student Di Li is working on, and also the excellent videos of Jim Mann from Hand washing for Life.
Then Don offered to send a free FoodSafetyTalk.com fridge magnet/thermometer to listeners who contact him via email or Twitter. He’s also using them for distribution at MaxFunCon East with the aim of increasing listener numbers, which has just exited the equivalent of the bacterial lag phase.
In the After Dark Ben announced that he was going to watch some more of The Wire and then proceeded to assign Don some homework – to watch Canadian TV Series "The Newsroom".
Today’s guest was Mike Batz, um, Joe Smith, who Skyped in from a hotel room while emptying the mini bar. Ben still hasn’t done his homework from last Season – watching The Wire. And to Mike's disappointment Ben hasn’t even watched The Lego Wire. The discussion then turned to playing with Lego, Ben’s vandalism activities as a teenager, craft paper maze making, Dungeons and Dragons and The Wire characters' D&D alignment.
The guys then got serious about food safety and discussed the Salmonella Typhimurium outbreak that CDC has linked to cantaloupes. At the time of the recording, the FDA hadn’t specifically commented on the potential source, though Chamberlain Farms had begun recalling cantaloupes. The guys thought it was strange that no FDA/CDC update on the situation has been issued for days and the overall lack of communication around this outbreak. However, Don noted that the lawyers are getting their ducks lined up and Bill Marler had already blogged about a lawsuit. Don asked Ben whether there is ever a right time to say nothing in a case like this. Ben didn’t think there was, but suggested that there was a right time to say “we’re uncertain” instead. He recalled the discussion mentioned in FST episode 6 about an outbreak of E. coli O157:H7 associated with the North Carolina State Fair, where the North Carolina Division of Public Health updated the information of what was known on a daily basis. Ben thought that this was better than the five-day cone-of-silence.
Mike was bothered by regulators implicating a whole growing region or commodity rather than naming the implicated farm, especially since the farm had already initiated a recall. It reminded him of what happened to Florida tomato growers a few years ago. Mike pointed out that implicating a whole region does not provide any incentive to an individual farmer to follow GAPs and do the right thing – since a neighbor who doesn’t do the right thing could wipe out all that effort.
In contrast, the Burch Farms recall, which was initiated after Listeria was detected on cantaloupes, but without an outbreak having occurred, did not result in the same level of concern. But Ben noted that the Burch Farms recall nevertheless resulted in questions being raised by buyers and cancellations of contracts, and as such the recall still impacted on the whole industry.
Don noted the fundamental differences between Listeria and Salmonella. He reminded the guys that the risk depends on the dose and that the dose-response relationship differs between the two organisms. Ben also noted the problem of applying a zero tolerance standard for ready-to-eat-foods to these agricultural commodity products, and Don highlighted the need for quantification when testing in addition to simple presence/absence testing.
Ben then explained the differences in the post harvest systems between California, where cantaloupes are not washed, compared to North Carolina, where cantaloupes are regularly washed. He noted that the use of water might provide an opportunity for cross contamination, which Don totally agreed with. The discussion then turned to Ben explaining that cantaloupes are washed because that’s what the industry has always done, though his experience indicates that farmers might be open to re-engineering their processes.
Don then produced a smorgasbord of potential topics for discussion and the guys settled on a 2002 blog post by John Gruber about Bagel Tongs on Fedora Review. In the article Gruber worried about bagels and that the “tong-arms are covered with some sort of moist, brown sediment.” Ben agreed with Gruber and would rather use tissue paper to pick up the bagels, though mainly because he feared contracting Norovirus from the tong handles. Don agreed with Ben that it’s not the crap at the end of the tongs, but the crap you can’t see that’s the problem. He also recalled that some cruise liners have a norovirus risk reduction measure, which involves staff serving passengers at the self-serve buffet on the first three days of the cruise.
Ben then reminisced about his high school days, when he wasn’t vandalizing his neighbors’ backyards but when he was working in a bulk food store. He had to clean and sanitize the scoop on a weekly basis, though he actually did this only when the prunes got really gunky. He never sanitized the handles – got to hold on to something while washing the scoop. Mike thought that the epidemiological evidence, that placed Ben at the epicenter of foodborne illness outbreaks, was building.
The show finished by Don telling the guys about wanting to order some Food Safety Talk promotional refrigerator temperature sensing magnets for inclusion in the MaxFunCon EAST show bags.
By now Mike Joe had sobered up somewhat and was eyeing the Arrogant Bastard that he’d been contemplating and this evolved into a broader discussion of alcohol consumption patterns.
In the after dark the guys talked about a range of “stuff” including Mike’s five-day FAO/WHO meeting bender on foodborne parasites in Rome.
The discussion started with an IAFP meeting round-up, including some discussion of the official app (iPhone or Android) and why Ben was hiding from his ‘stalkers.’ Chip and Ben both loved how the app gave them the schedule in the pocket, but noted a few minor annoyances. Don was pleasantly surprised how many people at the meeting had used the app.
At IAFP, Chip chaired the student Professional Development Group (PDG) and helped organize the student luncheon, at which Don presented. Don felt somewhat unloved, since none of the students came up to him during the conference to say “Hi” afterward (even after offering free drinks), but Chip questioned why Don hadn’t joined the students at Karaoke. Ben didn’t have the same problem as Don, so maybe students are intimidated because Don is the IAFP president. However, Ben felt that there were few non-students to mix with during the IAFP Student Mixer and maybe a speed networking between students and professionals will take place next year.
Ben didn’t go to any symposia or round-tables unless he was presenting in them, because he concentrated on the technical talks to find really new, fresh and interested things. Don noted that the “clicker” audience feedback was really useful and Ben enjoyed the clickers from a speaker’s perspective as it helped shape the talks on the fly.
The guys then explored their paranoia for double booking themselves for talks. This reminded Ben of a talk he gave on “Using multiple media and messages to create and foster a good food safety culture” in Tennessee. After the talk he was stumped by an audience question about a rumor that Ben had floated his Fanny down the Ganny, which was related to a festival in Port Hope.
The discussion then turned to follow up. Ben forgot his homework to watch “The Wire” as he’d been watching the Olympics. The conversation turned to the Olympics and sports more broadly and Ben recalled some watching a women’s soccer game while working at a bar.
Related to the vomit incident discussed in the previous podcast, third biggest fan, Mike Roberson sent a message asking whether Ben offered some food safety suggestions with Swiss Chalet. Ben noted that he hadn’t, but that it would involve sectioning off the contaminated area and avoiding moving contaminated mops, buckets and staff back into the kitchen area. This led to Chip providing some information about his scientific background and his current work on Norovirus nested PCR assays with Lee-Ann Jaykus. Chip agreed with Ben’s approach for dealing with the vomit incident. In particular he mentioned the importance of separating the clean-up from food preparation and also the need to use validated decontaminants to inactivate Norovirus.
The guys the explored their scientific family trees. In particular, Chip’s scientific grandfather is Martin Videman, which makes Karl Batt his scientific great-grandfather and Myron Solberg is great-great grandfather.
Ben then raised an issue he became aware of as part of his involvement with North Caroline Fresh Produce Safety Taskforce. Listeria monocytogenes had been found on cantaloupes though MDP surveillance, though no illnesses had been reported. Product was tracked back to Burch farm and cantaloupes were recalled over a number of days. Ben posed some questions about what such a recall says about production practices, especially in comparison to the Jensen’s farm outbreak last year. He also wondered whether cantaloupes were in a different risk category compared to other fresh produce. Don thought that Listeria would be found on other fresh produce and that cantaloupes clearly are a risk (as seen from last year’s outbreak – though there were apparently a number of processing issues). But at the same time he cautioned that to understand the risk better one would need to know the levels and how growth of Listeria might occur. Chip hadn’t found much Listeria in soil as part of his Master’s Thesis, despite Listeria having been reported as “ubiquitous” in soil. However, this discrepancy may be related to specificity issues with the diagnostic methods previously used, such as the simplified Henry technique. Ben felt that cantaloupes, and watermelon, do belong into their own risk category as they are grown on the ground, but unlike other produce they are eaten raw and can support the growth once they are cut. In addition, after cutting they are often stored for a number of days at temperatures that will promote the growth of Listeria.
The FDA had described Burch farm as having unsanitary conditions, but Don questioned whether other farms would actually be similar and whether this is in fact a risk factor for a fresh produce farm. Don then wondered whether it’s “blaming consumers” when the increase in risk comes from the practices in the home, i.e. storage, temperature and handling. And what is the solution to this? Is it the farmer’s or retailers responsibility to produce a Listeria-free cantaloupe or would an education campaign on proper storage and usage be more effective? And what would that proper storage be? Don also floated his pipe dream of retailers being able to avoid recalling food products because they are doing an excellent job at educating their consumers (of the risks). Chip found it interesting that all five Listeria isolates stored as part of the MDP program, were linked to human isolates on PulseNet and he wondered what would happen for this recall.
Don then gave kudos to Evan Henke for some cryptic tweets that managed to confuse Mike Batz. He also recalled how impressed he was when he shopped at Shaw’s supermarket, because they provided wipes for sanitizing hands and shopping cart handles. He was even more impressed by the public food safety announcement in the store that color was not an indication of doneness. Ben then recalled some work by Sandy McCurdy on emotion-based messaging in retail stores for thermometer usage.
The guys then discussed three pieces of Don’s follow up. First was an article on eco-contamination in hotel rooms from which Ben learned not to lick the light switch or TV remote, though noodling for catfish seems to be OK. The guys then discussed an article by Dr David Acheson on the intersection of food safety and politics, which reminded Ben of Creekstone’s request for 100% BSE testing. But Don warned of the danger that regulators need to watch out for, namely that increased food safety standards aren’t used as non-tariff trade barriers. The final piece of follow up related to the discussion in the last podcasts on visual inspection of chicken carcasses. The guys are still wondering how an inspector can see anything on a chicken carcass that they have a third of a second to thoroughly examine and Don got grumpy at the chicken processor who didn’t want to be responsible for the food safety of the chicken he produces.
The guys finished off with a quick chat about their crazy upcoming travel schedules. Ben mentioned his involvement in the development of a ‘video game’ for farmers markets, which reminded Don of testing the beta version of Ninja Kitchen.
The guys started with the usual technical problems but this time they were self-inflicted rather than Skype induced.
Don started off by talking about FSIS Risk Assessment for Guiding Public Health-Based Poultry Slaughter Inspection, which he is currently reviewing. The risk assessment is part of FSIS’ attempt to modernize their meat inspection system. Despite the introduction of HACCP in the mid 90’s, the current system relies on inspecting every carcass for visually observable contamination, obviously missing microbiological contamination, like in Gary Larson’s “Early microbiologists.” The risk assessment was undertaken to assess whether allowing FSIS personnel to undertake off-line inspection verification activities would result in reductions (or at least no increase) in the occurrence of Salmonella or Campylobacter on finished poultry carcasses.
The risk assessment is largely based on a data rich and complicated regression model, which attempts to model the prevalence of Salmonella or Campylobacter from different types of inspections activities. While ultimately nothing is clear-cut, the risk assessment does indicate that moving inspectors from on-line inspection to more risk-based off-line activities will not result in more foodborne illness. However, the coding system used in the risk assessment was turning Don into 'grumpy pants' and reminded Ben of Bingo, and it shows an apparent communication disconnect between those undertaking the modeling and those writing up the risk assessment.
The conversation then turned to FSMA and the delay in the regulations. Ben’s worried that some companies may be holding off on undertaking certain activities until the regulations come out. For example, he thinks that some business may be holding off on training staff until the training standards are better defined. Both agreed that concern for food safety and public health didn’t stop due to the lack of regulations and that any effort expended in planning and thinking about food safety is not wasted. Don is hopeful that even if the FSMA is repealed that the good ideas in FSMA will not be lost, and neither will the activities of the Food Safety Preventative Control Alliance be wasted.
Since the last podcast, Don had been to his favorite restaurant, Moosewood in Ithaca, NY while Ben started his visit to Canada with a trip to Tim Hortons to bask in the Canadian ambiance and slang, such as beauty and giver, eh? Ben also went to Swiss Chalet with his mom and dad. When a child on a nearby table vomited, Ben’s neurotic father wanted to know whether they should move. But Ben assured him that they were OK, having ulterior motives in mind. One of the kitchen staff then came out of the kitchen to clean up the vomit with a bucket, mop and some cleaning cloths, before disappearing back into the kitchen, clearly not following CDC’s guidelines for cleaning up vomit. Ben was of course aware of the risks associated with airborne Norovirus infection as shown by his Food Safety Info Sheet and his careful reading this article. But he wanted to see how the restaurant handled the cleanup, even at the risk of his own heath and that of his parents!
On the social media front, Don recommended that Ben follow Michele Catalano and John Roderick (from Roderick on the Line) on Twitter. Don was totally in awe of Mike Batz’s Twitter-awesomeness when Mike replied to John’s tweet about the bactericidal effects of coffee with “Coffee kills gut demons, miniature blood Nazis, and vampire nanobots. But not milk devils. Everybody knows this.” Ben is again trying to engage more on Twitter, but he wasn’t impressed with McDonald’s Executive Chef’s video on how to do a Big Mac at home.
The guys then discussed scientific writing. Despite Don’s best efforts he can’t get his students to write better, though maybe collaboration with Michelle Danyluk on “How to write a paper that won’t piss off your advisor” might help. He’d even be happy if students learned to use a reference manager like Sente. Ben is trying out some advice he’d received from Gord Surgeoner during his graduate studies – with a bit of luck it’ll earn him some beers.
While Don is generally happy with his own scientific writing he wasn’t happy with the reviewer of his recent JFP manuscript entitled “Issues to consider when setting intervention targets with limited data for low-moisture food commodities: A peanut case study” which arose out of an ILSI North America sponsored meeting. The reviewer thought that the approach was very simplified and not novel enough. He clearly didn’t understand the complexities of making decisions from limited data – something the smartest people in this field in the country struggled with.
Finally, the guys got excited about the upcoming IAFP meeting, for which Don had done an IAFP webinar for students and IAFP meeting first timers, which was all about how to meet people. Don also offered to a buy a beverage of choice for any listener who mentions to podcast to Don at the IAFP meeting.
The guys are still having some problems with Skype though maybe some of it is related to Don hitting the permanent mute button.
Don prepared for his colonoscopy with the Suprep innards-cleansing purple sponge kit. He couldn’t stomach the diarrhea inducing preparation and Ben thought he could have achieved the same effect with some of Lee-Ann Jaykus’ fecal-harvested norovirus. But Don longs for a magic pill instead of eating poop (or drinking Suprep).
The discussion then turned to the inter-relations between food safety, social networking and the Internet. Don explained that the Internet was an interconnected series of tubes invented by Al Gore. This surprised Ben. Don then briefly detoured by reminiscing about the dinner he and Kristin had with Merlin Mann at the House of Prime Rib while on a trip to San Francisco, where the WWDC Apple nerds overlapped with the ASM micro nerds. This led to the story how Dan Benjamin asked Don to talk some food safety sense into Andy Ihnatko and Dave Nanian. This inspires Don to proclaim himself food safety consultant to the Apple nerds, truly a golden god.
Bill Marler retweeted a reference to Don’s post on barfblog about hand-washing which received some criticism from a be-sandeled curmudgeon for lack of credit. Maybe he could use The Malcolm Gladwell Book Generator which (essentially) made Don an overnight Internet semi-celebrity thanks to a re-tweet by Merlin Mann.
When Ben (finally) got a word in he thought it was important to contribute to the food safety conversation on the Internet and for food professionals to know what is being talked about. Ben’s biggest challenge is finding the best way to engage with all the various social media outlets. Ben believes that people are only trusted if others can see they are real – such as Bill Marler as compared to USDA live tweet session about food safety “Ask Karen.”
While Ben and Doug’s twitter feeds are clearly food safety related, Don felt that his own was more random, such as asking Jesse Thorn for a link to the audio file for Jesse’s classic interview with Dick Dale. Don also uses Twitter as an outlet for his frustrations with a life in academe, but he was also curious about trying to socially engage random strangers reporting vomiting, diarrhea and food poisoning. Ben monitors some of these terms with TweetDeck, though he may switch to Hibari. Ben also pitched Lee-Ann on the idea of a team of graduate students engaging with those who are already reading and talking about foodborne illnesses and outbreaks as part of the NoroCore project.
Don recounted his recent appearance on Dr. Radio, a satellite radio show hosted by nutritionist Samantha Heller. He gave the podcast a plug, though the causal link with the growth in the FST podcast listenership is unknown. Don did note that about 40% of blog traffic was thanks to links from barfblog. The guys were grateful to those who had left reviews, including Mike Batz, who struggles with multiple twitter personalities.
While Don knew that the guys from Car Talk were retiring, he found out from Jesse Thorn about a post written by Ira Glass about what public radio shows should do with the slot and the response to it. The success of Car Talk reminded Don of John Gruber and Merlin Mann’s South by Southwest Interactive 2009 talk about building a blog to be proud of. All you need is Obsession + Topic + Voice, something the guys are striving to perfect.
Another opportunity for a podcast plug will be Don’s IAFP webinar on “Making the Most of Your IAFP Annual Meeting: Tips for Students and First-Timers” Tuesday, 10 July 2012, 9:00 AM - 10:00 AM (Central Time). Ben recalled FST Episode 0 (on StoryCorps) and their first IAFP meeting experiences. The guys then talked about what they do and don’t do at conferences. This includes leaving sessions if they are bored.
Finally, the discussion turned to music and Ben shared that wishes he was food safety’s Neil Young. Don agreed that Neil Young’s Americana was amazing, but that he hasn’t quite got into Sloan, like Ben and Merlin.