Filtering by Tag: Tempeh

Food Safety Talk 47: But that's not science

Added on by Ben Chapman.

The guys started by talking about their office and home podcasting set-ups; how Don inspired his son Zac; podcast sponsorship (thanks Dr. Indian Clarified Butter); the Food Science short course at Rutgers; MC-ing; Ben’s wedding; and, customer service at Frito Lay’s and General Mills.

In the bug trivia segment the guys talked about the protozoan parasite Toxoplasma gondii, recently reviewed by Beniamino and colleagues. T. gondii was ranked the second worst pathogen in terms of quality adjusted life years (QALY) by Mike Batz (guest on FST 4) and colleagues, and recently featured on Back to Work.

The discussion took a short detour to food thermometers, including the PDT 300, iGrill, and ThermaPen, before coming around to the retiring Pete Snyder, from HI-TM. Pete is held in high regard by both Ben and Don, not only because he wasn’t afraid to ask questions, like Don did in the comment exchange to the Snapper barfblog article. Thanks to Pete’s guidance Ben is always seeking the primary information for creating his Infosheets.  A classic example of Pete’s drive for the scientific justification relates to the information produced on thawing poultry at ambient temperatures, which was picked up by barfblog.

Ben then talked about the CDC report on the tempeh related outbreak discussed in FST 18. He found it interesting that many of the illnesses appeared to be caused by cross-contamination rather than consumption of the contaminated, unpasteurized tempeh. Don was bummed that his own work wasn’t cited by the CDC, but he noted that Michelle’s recent work showed that cross-contamination was facilitated by moisture. This then turned into a broader discussion around managing risks in a food service setting.

Don then wanted to hear Ben’s thoughts about Bill Marler’s question on what cantaloupe and baseball have in common. Bill’s suggestion to change the incentives had the flavor of a Modest Proposal, but without the satire. Ben agreed that retailers and restaurants should be held responsible, as without them there isn’t enough pressure on the suppliers. The guys then discussed third party audits and the setting of supplier standards. Both agreed that the current system doesn’t work how it should and that proper data analysis could provide significant insights.

In the after dark the guys talked about Ben’s upcoming trip to Brazil, the PCV show, food safety a-holesMexican wrestling masks, the Conference for Food Protection councils, laws and sausages, and getting hurt at the doctor's office.


Food Safety Talk 18: Bunkum!

Added on by Don Schaffner.

The show opens once again with the requisite Skype complaints. Don tries to impress Ben with his use of the 5by5 soundboard, but to no avail. The guys briefly discuss Ben's son Jack, Don's student (and fan of the show), Dane, and other fan of the show Michelle, who was inspired by e16 to spend the day listening to "The Hip".

As usual, the guys eventually get around to discussing food safety and the current Tempeh-borne outbreak, which is occurring in Bunkum County, North Carolina. Where Alice B. Toklas might have once lived, or not. The Tempeh in question was produced by a company called Smiling Hara, where according to Wikipedia, Hara might be a Japanese term referring for the stomach, feces in Maltese language, or pigsty in Latin. Ben has actually visited Buncombe County, because it is well established, he is a hippie. Surprisingly, or maybe not, the food safety risks of tempeh have actually been documented in the scientific literature, including the observation that "Active mycelial growth on the beans resulted in a sharp increase in pH. This was always accompanied by a sharp increase in the growth rate of the test organisms".

After the discussion of tempeh food safety, the guys move on to a discussion of the safety of cut leafy greens and proper refrigeration temperature and the FDA model food code. Of course, this leads to a mention of the Conference for Food Protection, where issues like time out of temperature control get debated. Ben points out that the Federal regulations for food processors require refrigeration at 45 F, while the more up to date Food Code says 41 F is the right temperature. He has this on good authority, as he's checked this with Kevin Smith... er... anyway, the Kevin Smith from the FDA Office of Food Safety. Ben's interest in cut leafy greens lead his student to do research, which may have lead her neighbors to think she was cooking meth in her car. In the interest of public safety, we are passing on Randy Phebus's sage advice: if you see a cooler by the side of the road, don't open it.

The guys discuss a bunch of stuff in the after-dark, and discover the amazing fact that Rochester, NY is equidistant from their respective home towns.

Food Safety Talk 18: Bunkum!