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Friday, 27 February 2015

From the Pleasure of Eating to Dead Silence

They would have been convincing firsthand experience advocates if they had survived. Sadly, they are no longer around to tell us how they feel about this matter of food safety. They have left the rest of us to speculate. We consider statistics like the tonnage of food sold everyday around the world compared to the number of food poisoning casualties and we say “it is not that bad”. What gives us this confidence?
The number of casualties is much deflated, of course. Not all deaths caused by the carelessness or callousness of food purveyors are counted. Well, the dead are no longer around to counter the "food sales tonnage versus the small number of casualties" argument. They can no longer engage in any campaign for the safety of food. They are silenced. What power do you have to avoid a similar fate? Do you feel invincible and untouched? If so, I hate to break this to you but I must: We are vulnerable and may be the next victims of those missed bacterium cells, the undeclared allergens, or other instant or slow killers in food that has been carelessly prepared and sold to us.

Posted February 12, 2015: Seven deaths in a Multistate Outbreak of Listeriosis Linked to Commercially Produced, Prepackaged Caramel Apples  - http://www.cdc.gov/listeria/outbreaks/caramel-apples-12-14/

We must act but how?

In what direction should food safety assurance effort head? 

To what should food companies direct more of their product safety and quality management resources? 

Where should the industry be looking for the results of its effort? 

Which individuals should the industry be training and entrusting more with the assurance of food safety and quality?

Posted By Felix Amiri
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Felix Amiri is currently the chair of GCSE-Food & Health Protection, and a sworn SSQA advocate.