Meatingplace – where all information about Food Safety and Inspection Service seems to be leaked, reported this evening that Food Safety and Inspection Service Administrator (FSIS) Al Almanza was named deputy under secretary for food safety.
According to Meatingplace , Almanza, a 36-year FSIS veteran, will work alongside Brian Ronholm, who will also have the title of deputy undersecretary (a.k.a. – a “twofer”). Ronholm has been serving as the acting undersecretary since Elisabeth Hagen left the post in December 2013. The undersecretary office remains vacant – well, sort of.
Meatingplace reported that sources said Almanza had been considered for the top job but had to withdraw his name in exchange for finalizing new poultry inspection rules.
An email forwarded to Meatingplace and apparently authored by Almanza addressing colleagues also states, “… I have been named by the Secretary as Deputy Under Secretary for Food Safety.
Also tonight – it seems they have their work cut out for them:
Caviness Beef Packers, a Hereford, Texas establishment, is recalling approximately 23,100 pounds of Beef Trimmings products that may be contaminated with E. coli O157:H7, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.
The Beef Trimmings products were produced on August 14, 2014 and August 20, 2014. The following products are subject to recall:
Combo bins containing “Beef Trimmings, BNLS, 90 L”
Combo bins containing “Beef Trimmings, BNLS, 84 L”
The products subject to recall bear the establishment number “EST. 675” inside the USDA mark of inspection. These products were sent to establishments for further processing and will likely not bear the establishment number “EST. 675” on products available for direct consumer purchase. These products were shipped to fast food restaurants and retail distribution locations in Texas.
The problem was discovered during a food safety assessment. The products subject to recall are lots that tested negative, however were produced consecutive to the positive lots and were subsequently processed into raw ground products and distributed to retailers.
E. coli O157:H7 is a potentially deadly bacterium that can cause dehydration, bloody diarrhea and abdominal cramps 2–8 days (3–4 days, on average) after exposure the organism. While most people recover within a week, some develop a type of kidney failure called hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). This condition can occur among persons of any age but is most common in children under 5-years old and older adults. It is marked by easy bruising, pallor, and decreased urine output. Persons who experience these symptoms should seek emergency medical care immediately.
FSIS and the company are concerned that some product may be frozen and in consumers’ freezers.