2017 was somewhat of a quiet year for significant, yet still deadly, outbreaks.

Listeria – Cheese

The first to be noticed was announced by the CDC in March of 2017.  By then the CDC had been collaborating with public health and regulatory officials in several states and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to investigate a multistate outbreak of Listeria monocytogenes infections (listeriosis). According to the CDC, Listeria specimens were collected from ill people from September 1, 2016 to March 13, 2017. Ill people ranged in age from less than one year to 89 years, with a median age of 52 years. Five of eight ill people were female. All eight (100%) ill people were hospitalized, including two people from Connecticut and Vermont who died. One of the illnesses was reported in a newborn. Victims came from Connecticut (1), Florida (1), New York (5) and Vermont (1)

Epidemiologic and laboratory evidence indicated that soft raw milk cheese made by Vulto Creamery of Walton, New York, was the likely source of this outbreak. State and local health departments interviewed ill people or their family members about the foods they ate or other exposures in the month before their illness started. Based on those interviews, eight (100%) of eight people ate a soft cheese. The ill resident of Florida reported traveling to New York state and eating soft cheese there before becoming ill. Available information indicated that cheese made by Vulto Creamery was for sale at stores where at least seven of the ill people bought cheese before getting sick.

The Connecticut Department of Public Health collected leftover cheeses from the home of the deceased person in Connecticut. The outbreak strain of Listeria was identified in a leftover cheese that the family identified as Ouleout cheese from Vulto Creamery. The New York Division of Milk Control and Dairy Services collected three intact wheels of Ouleout cheese from Vulto Creamery. The outbreak strain of Listeria was identified in samples taken from the three wheels of cheese. On March 7, 2017, Vulto Creamery recalled all lots of Ouleout, Miranda, Heinennellie, and Willowemoc soft wash-rind raw milk cheeses. On March 10, the company expanded the recall to include four other cheeses: Andes, Blue Blais, Hamden, and Walton Umber. The raw milk cheeses were distributed nationwide, with most sold in stores in the northeastern and Mid-Atlantic states; California; Chicago; Portland, Oregon; and Washington, D.C.

E. coli – Soy Nut Butter

The CDC reported on May 2017, that although the outbreak investigation is over, illnesses may continue for some time. The recalled SoyNut Butter products have long shelf lives and may still be in people’s homes or in institutions. People who don’t know about the recalls could continue to eat the products and get sick.

Thirty-two people infected with the outbreak strains of STEC O157:H7 were reported from 12 states. Arizona 4, California 5, Florida 2, Illinois 1, Massachusetts 1, Maryland 1, Missouri 1, New Jersey 1, Oregon 11, Virginia 2, Washington 2 and Wisconsin 1. Twelve people were hospitalized. Nine people developed hemolytic uremic syndrome, a type of kidney failure. Twenty-six (81%) of the 32-ill people in this outbreak were younger than 18 years. Epidemiologic, laboratory, and traceback evidence indicated that I.M. Healthy brand SoyNut Butter was the likely source of this outbreak. Several soy nut products were recalled.

On March 28, 2017, the FDA issued a Suspension of Food Facility Registration Order to Dixie Dew of Erlanger, Ky., after an inspection revealed insanitary conditions at the firm that could affect the safety of finished products. Dixie Dew is the contract manufacturer for SoyNut Butter Company’s soy nut butter products. The close out of the outbreak investigation does not affect the suspension order.

Botulism – Cheese Sauce

Also in May, the California Department of Health reported an outbreak of foodborne botulism originating from the Valley Oak Food and Fuel gas station in Walnut Grove left 10 people hospitalized, the state Department of Health reported Friday, and an Antioch resident died as a result.

The botulism outbreak was reported to have come from nacho cheese sauce sold at the Valley Oak Food and Fuel gas station in Walnut Grove. Inspection reports for the Valley Oaks Food and Fuel station show that on May 6 and 7, officers impounded bags of Montecito nacho cheese tortilla chips and closed the facility. On May 8, health officers from the state Department of Health impounded four bags of Gehls cheese sauce and reopened the store to sell prepackaged food items only.

Let’s hope for even fewer outbreak in the coming New Year.

A bit(e) more history:

Poisoned: The True Story of the Deadly E. Coli Outbreak That Changed the Way Americans Eat, By Jeff Benedict

2017 – This Food Poisoning Expert Revealed The 6 Things He Refuses To EatHealthyWay, R.J.Wilson, May 18

2016 –  How one Attorney Is Trying to Make Food Safer Civil Beat News, Rui Kaneya, August 22

2016 – This genius lawyer is our best hope against deadly food poisoning Mother Jones, Kiera Butler, May 20

2016 – 7 Things We Learned About Food Safety Oversight From A Foodborne IllnessExpert Consumerist, Ashlee Kieler, February 2

2015 – Profile in Obsession: Bill Marler, Naomi Tomky, March 24

2015 – The New Yorker – A Bug in the System The New Yorker, Wil S. Hylton, February 2

2014 – Q&A: Food Safety Lawyer Bill Marler on What Not to Eat The National Law Journal, Jenna Greene, November 3

2012 – Bill Marler, Attorney, Blogger, and Food Safety Advocate, Talks Turkey (Or Spinach, Rather) Miami New Times, Ily Goyanes, November 2

2012 – Bill Marler Interview, Part Two: His Most Difficult Cases and Lobbying Congress Miami New Times, Ily Goyanes, November 14

2012 – Profiles in Public Health Law: Interview with William “Bill” Marler CDC Public Health Law News, July

2012 – Food Safety Lawyer Bill Marler On Sprouts, Raw Milk, and Why “Local” Isn’t Always Safer Blisstree.com, Hanna Brooks Olsen, March 5

2011 – Listeria outbreak draws Seattle lawyer to battle Associated Press, Shannon Dininny, October 9

2011 – Food-Borne Illness Attorney: Top Foods to Avoid ABC News, Neal Karlinsky, September 29

2011 – How to Keep Food Free of Salmonella: Lawsuits The Atlantic, Barry Estabrook, August 31

2011 – More Stomach-Churning Facts about the E. Coli Outbreak New York Times, Mark Bittman, June 8

2011 – Bill Marler: A Personal Injury Attorney and More The Xemplar, Nicole Black, June 1

2011 – Good Food Hero: Bill Marler, Food Safety Attorney Good Food World, Gail Nickel-Kailing, May 23

2011- Poisoned: The True Story of the Deadly E. coli Outbreak that Changed the Way Americans Eat Inspire Books, Jeff Benedict, May 15

2011 – New Book Chronicles Islander Marler’s Work Bainbridge Island Review, Connie Mears, May 13

2010 – Food Safety Lawyer Puts His Money Where Your Mouth Is AOL News, Andrew Schneider, September 29

2009 – Bill Marler: Taking on E.coli, BigAg, Raw Milk, Conspiracy Theorists, and the USDA Simple, Good, and Tasty, Shai Danielson, December 16

2009 – Food Safety Lawyer’s Wish: Put Me Out of Business Seattle Times, Maureen O’Hagan, November 23

2009 – WSU Discourse on Food Safety, Courtesy Seattle Lawyer Kitsap Sun, Tristan Baurick,  August 29

2009 – Calling for Real Food Safety Reform: Bill Marler for FSIS Civil Eats, David Murphy, June 24

2009 – When Food Sickens, He Heads for Courthouse Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Matt McKinney, June 24

2009 –  Bill Marler, The Food-Safety Litigator Culinate, Miriam Wolf, April

2009 – Food Fight:Bill Marler’s Beef (PDF) Washington Law & Politics, David Volk, May

2009 – Candidate for Top FSIS Job talks E. coli Testing, Irradiation, Education The Meating Place, Ann Bagel Storck, February 6

2009 – Five Minutes with Bill Marler, Well Known Lawyer, Food Safety Activist CattleNetwork, Chuck Jolley, February 5

2009 – Outspoken Food Safety Attorney Wants In The Washington Post, Ed O’Keefe, January 27

2008 –  E. Coli Lawyer Is Busier Than Ever Associated Press, February 4

2007 –  Legally Speaking: The Food Poisoning Lawyer The Southeast Texas Record, John G. Browning, November 20

2007 –  The Nation’s Leading Food-borne Illness Attorney Tells All Washington State Magazine, Hannelore Sudermann, August

2007 – Food Fight Portland Oregonian, Alex Pulaski, March

2006 –  How a Tiny Law Firm Made Hay Out of Tainted Spinach The Wall Street Journal, Heather Won Tesoriero and Peter Lattman, September 27

2001 –  THE INSIDE STORY: How 11 Schoolkids Got $4.75 Million in E. coli Lawsuit MeatingPlace.com, Bryan Salvage, March 7

2001 –  Hammer Time: Preparation Pays When Disputes Escalate to Lawsuits Meat & Poultry Magazine, David Hendee

2001 –  For Seattle Attorney, A Bacterium Brings Riches—and Enemies The Wall Street Journal, Rachel Zimmerman

2001 –  The Bug That Ate The Burger Los Angeles Times, Emily Green, June

1999 –  Courting Publicity, Attorney Makes Safe Food His Business Seattle Post, Maggie Leung, September 7

Green Cuisine, a San Fernando, Calif. establishment, is recalling approximately 36,854 pounds of chicken and turkey salad products that may be contaminated with extraneous materials, specifically hard silica and glass fragments, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.

The ready-to-eat chicken and turkey salads were produced from Nov. 4 – 15, 2017. The following products are subject to recall:

  • 10.5-oz. clear plastic individual serving packages containing “TRADER JOE’S White Meat Chicken Salad with celery, carrots and green onions” with a “Use By” date of November 10 – 21, 2017.
  • 11.0-oz. clear plastic individual serving packages containing “TRADER JOE’S CURRIED WHITE CHICKEN DELI SALAD with toasted cashews, green onion and a bit of honey” with a “Use By” date of November 10 – 21, 2017.
  • 10.25-oz. clear plastic individual serving packages containing “TRADER JOE’S TURKEY CRANBERRY APPLE SALAD TURKEY BREAST MEAT WITH SWEET DRIED CRANBERRIES, TANGY GREEN APPLES, PECANS AND SAGE” with a “Use By” date of November 10 – 21, 2017.

The products subject to recall bear establishment number “P-40299” inside the USDA mark of inspection. These items were shipped to retail locations in the following states: Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Louisiana, New Mexico, Nevada, Oklahoma, Oregon, Texas, Utah and Washington.

The problem was discovered when the company received consumer complaints and subsequently notified FSIS Inspection Program Personnel on November 17, 2017.

The Food and Drug Administration knows the names and locations of supermarkets and other retailers which sold Maradol papayas that are contaminated with Salmonella and that are the subject of a nationwide recall.

But the agency is suppressing public release of that list of retailers—even after a Freedom of Information Act request filed by the nonprofit Center for Science in the Public Interest.  Today the nonprofit nutrition and food safety watchdog group is appealing the government’s denial of its request.

“The typical consumer isn’t going to recognize the brand of papaya they buy or the farm it was grown on, but they know where they bought it,” said CSPI chief regulatory affairs counsel Sarah Sorscher.

The Salmonella outbreak linked to Maradol papayas imported from Mexico is ongoing.  To date, 200 people from 23 states have become infected with Salmonella.  65 patients have been hospitalized.  One has died.  CSPI filed its request for the list of retailers on August 17.  The FDA admitted this week it has 451 pages of documents that are responsive to CSPI’s request.  But it is withholding them, citing exemptions for “trade secret and confidential information” and others.  Consumers, the FDA said on its website, would have to ask retailers where the papayas came from.

“The typical consumer isn’t going to recognize the brand of papaya they buy or the farm it was grown on, but they know where they bought it,” said CSPI chief regulatory affairs counsel Sarah Sorscher.  “The FDA is supposed to be helping Americans avoid foodborne illness.  It could improve by consistently disclosing retailer names and locations, along with brand names, dates of sale, lot numbers, and other useful information when it communicates with the media or with the public about recalls.”

The FDA’s reluctance to disclose retailers who might have sold contaminated products is not new, but it is also not consistent.  In May, the FDA did disclose the names of retailers that sold tuna, imported from Indonesia, that tested positive for Hepatitis A.  The Consumer Federation of America, Pew Charitable Trusts, CSPI, and other health groups wrote to FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb in August, explaining why lists of retailers of recalled food are not exempt from disclosure under FOIA.

RELATED LINKS AND DOWNLOADS: 

Read CSPI’s appeal here

Seattle Attorney Bill Marler is often thought of as a bug…an agitator…an annoyance to the beef and poultry industries, and even the companies that grow leafy greens. He’s the guy you call if you are unfortunate enough to fall victim to E. coli, salmonella, listeria, or any other bacteria that somehow works its way into mass food production and into your stomach.

E. coli entered everyday lexicon when three people died and hundreds of others were sickened after eating Jack In The Box hamburgers back in 1993. One of the epicenters of the outbreak was here, in Washington State.

The E. coli victim who launched Bill Marler’s career was 9 year old Brianne Kiner of Redmond. She was one of the survivors. Marler got her a $15 million dollar settlement from Jack In The Box.

When Bill Marler graduated from law school, he was aiming for a career in politics. When he was 19 he was elected to Pullman’s city council in Eastern Washington. He wanted to be U.S. president by age 35. But as we hear in this interview, Brianne’s case and the Jack In The Box E. coli outbreak tossed this plan out the window.

Link to the Audio

If you are eating leftover pork chops that have not been cooked well-done, you’re putting yourself at risk for Salmonella and Listeria exposure. While many individuals prefer to consume their pork medium, a new study published in Risk Analysis: An International Journal revealed that cooking pork chops to an acceptable temperature does not completely eliminate pathogens, providing these cells with the opportunity to multiply during storage and harm consumers.

The study, “Impact of cooking procedures and storage practices at home on consumer exposure to Listeria monocytogenes and Salmonella due to the consumption of pork meat,” found that only pork loin chops cooked well-done in a static oven (the researchers also tested cooking on a gas stove top) completely eliminated the Listeria and Salmonella pathogens. Other levels of cooking, i.e. rare and medium, while satisfying the requirements of the product temperature being greater than or equal to 73.6 degrees Celsius and decreasing the pathogen levels, did leave behind a few surviving cells which were then given the opportunity to multiply during food storage before being consumed.

It is generally believed that when meat is heat treated to 70 degrees Celsius for two minutes, a one million cell reduction of E. coli, Salmonella and Listeria is achieved and thus the meat is free of pathogens and safe to eat. However, a report by the European Food Safety Authority revealed that more than 57 percent of Salmonella outbreaks in 2014 were in the household/kitchen, and 13 percent were associated with inadequate heat treatment.

“The results of this study can be combined with dose response models and included in guidelines for consumers on practices to be followed to manage cooking of pork meat at home,” says Alessandra De Cesare, PhD, lead author and professor at the University of Bologna.

In order to assess the pathogen levels in cooked pork, the researchers, from the University of Bologna, the Institute of Food Engineering for Development and the Istituto Zooprofilattico delle Venezie, tested 160 packs of loin chop. The samples were experimentally contaminated with 10 million cells of L. monocytogenes and Salmonella to assess the reduction in pathogens after cooking, in accordance with the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) and British Retail Consortium (BRC) specifications (ensuring a reduction of at least 100,000 and 1,000,000 cells, respectively). The samples were contaminated on the surface, to mimic contamination via slaughter and cutting.

The samples were divided into groups to be cooked either on gas with a nn-stick pan or in a static oven. In each setting, the pork chops were cooked to rare, medium and well-done. For each cooking combination, 40 repetitions were performed for a total of 240 cooking tests.

The researchers also interviewed 40 individuals between the ages of 20 and 60 to determine household consumer habits regarding doneness preferences. Prior published research was referenced to define meat storage practices and the probability that consumers store their leftovers at room temperature, in the refrigerator or discard them immediately. Growth rate data for the pathogens at each temperature were obtained using the software tool ComBase.

The only cooking treatment able to completely inactivate the pathogens was oven well-done, which achieved a reduction between one and 10 million cells. Statistical analyses of the data showed significant differences related to level of cooking and cooking procedure. However, the researchers explained that factors such as moisture, water activity, fat levels, salts, carbohydrates, pH and proteins can impact the cooking treatment and effectiveness and, as a consequence, on bacteria survival. These results emphasize the needs to consider the form of pork (such as whole muscle versus ground) being cooked, in addition to the final temperature necessary to inactivate pathogens.

The results show that a reduction between one and 10 million of pathogen cells was reached when applying all of the tested cooking treatments, with product temperatures always reaching 73.6 degrees Celsius or greater. However, according to the simulation results using the obtained cell growth rates, the few surviving cells can multiply during storage in both the refrigerator and at room temperature, reaching concentrations dangerous for both vulnerable and regular consumers.

After storing leftovers, there was a probability for the concentration of pathogens to reach 10 cells ranging between 0.031 and 0.059 for all combinations except oven well-done. Overall, the mean level of exposure to Listeria and Salmonella at the time of consumption was one cell for each gram of meat. The results obtained from this study can be implemented in guidelines for consumers on practices to follow in order to manage cooking pork meat at home.

This research was funded by the European Union Seventh Framework Programme, grant no. KBBE 222738 BASELINE.

Risk Analysis: An International Journal is published by the nonprofit Society for Risk Analysis (SRA), an interdisciplinary, scholarly, international society that provides an open forum for all who are interested in risk analysis, a critical function in complex modern societies. Risk analysis includes risk assessment, risk characterization, risk communication, risk management, and risk policy affecting individuals, public- and private-sector organizations, and societies at a local, regional, national, or global level. To learn more, visit www.sra.org.

This news release was issued on behalf of Newswise(TM). For more information, visit http://www.newswise.com.

View original content:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/new-study-finds-properly-cooked-pork-chops-still-contain-threat-of-listeria-and-salmonella-for-consumers-300526954.html

SOURCE Society for Risk Analysis

Seattle-based food safety advocate and attorney Bill Marler has been listed among The Best Lawyers in America©. The 24th edition of this prestigious publication was released this month.

Marler, who began his career representing those made sickest during the 1990s Jack in the Box E. coli outbreak, was chosen by his peers for inclusion on the list in the category Personal Injury Litigation and Product Liability Litigation.

Through his firm, Marler Clark, Marler has represented thousands of victims of foodborne illness from all over the country. He is a highly sought after public speaker—by both corporate and public entities—lending his expertise on topics related to food safety.

Through his blog, Marlerblog.com, he writes about the latest news and information about foodborne outbreaks and food safety. Marler is also the founder and publisher of Food Safety News, which covers the stories intersecting food, health, and safety.

ABOUT Best Lawyers in America

Best Lawyers is the oldest and most respected peer review publication in the legal profession. For over three decades, their lists of outstanding attorneys have been compiled by conducting exhaustive peer review surveys in which tens of thousands of leading lawyers confidentially evaluate their professional peers. If the votes for an attorney are positive enough for recognition in Best Lawyers, that attorney must maintain those votes in subsequent polls to remain in each edition. Lawyers are not permitted to pay any fee to participate in or be recognized by Best Lawyers.

ABOUT Bill Marler

An accomplished attorney and national expert in food safety, William (Bill) Marler has become the most prominent foodborne illness lawyer in America and a major force in food policy in the U.S. and around the world .  Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, has represented thousands of individuals in claims against food companies whose contaminated products have caused life altering injury and even death.

He began litigating foodborne illness cases in 1993, when he represented Brianne Kiner, the most seriously injured survivor of the historic Jack in the Box E. coli O157:H7 outbreak, in her landmark $15.6 million settlement with the company.  The 2011 book, Poisoned: The True Story of the Deadly E. coli Outbreak that Changed the Way Americans Eat, by best-selling author Jeff Benedict, chronicles the Jack in the Box outbreak and the rise of Bill Marler as a food safety attorney.

For the last 25 years, he has represented victims of nearly every large foodborne illness outbreak in the United States.  He has filed lawsuits against such companies as Chili’s, Chi-Chi’s, Cargill, ConAgra, Dole, Excel, Golden Corral, KFC, McDonald’s, Odwalla, Peanut Corporation of America, Sheetz, Sizzler, Supervalu, Taco Bell and Wendy’s, securing over $600,000,000 for victims of E. coli, Salmonella, and other foodborne illnesses.

Among the most notable cases he has litigated, Bill counts those of nineteen-year-old dancer Stephanie Smith, who was sickened by an E. coli-contaminated hamburger that left her brain damaged and paralyzed, and Linda Rivera, a fifty-seven-year-old mother of six from Nevada, who was hospitalized for over 2 years after she was stricken with what her doctor described as “the most severe multi-organ [bowel, kidney, brain, lung, gall bladder, and pancreas] case of E. coli mediated HUS I have seen in my extensive experience.”

New York Times reporter Michael Moss won a Pulitzer Prize for his coverage of Smith’s case, which was settled by Cargill in 2010 for an amount “to care for her throughout her life.” Linda’s story hit the front page of the Washington Post and became Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s touchstone for successfully moving forward the Food Safety Modernization Act in 2010.

Bill Marler’s advocacy for a safer food supply includes petitioning the United States Department of Agriculture to better regulate pathogenic E. coli, working with nonprofit food safety and foodborne illness victims’ organizations, and helping spur the passage of the 2010-2011 FDA Food Safety Modernization Act.  His work has led to invitations to address local, national, and international gatherings on food safety, including testimony before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce.

At little or no cost to event organizers, Bill travels widely and frequently to speak to food industry groups, fair associations, and public health groups about the litigation of claims resulting from outbreaks of pathogenic bacteria and viruses and the issues surrounding it.  He gives frequent donations to industry groups for the promotion of improved food safety, and has established numerous collegiate science scholarships across the nation.

He is a frequent writer on topics related to foodborne illness.  Bill’s articles include “Separating the Chaff from the Wheat: How to Determine the Strength of a Foodborne Illness Claim”, “Food Claims and Litigation”, “How to Keep Your Focus on Food Safety”, and “How to Document a Food Poisoning Case” (co-authored with David Babcock.)  He is the publisher of the online news site, Food Safety News and his award winning blog, www.marlerblog.com is avidly read by the food safety and legal communities. He is frequent media guest on food safety issues and has been profiled in numerous publications.

In 2010 Bill was awarded the NSF Food Safety Leadership Award for Education and in 2008 earned the Outstanding Lawyer Award by the King County Bar Association.  He has also received the Public Justice Award from the Washington State Trial Lawyers Association.

Bill graduated from the Seattle University School of Law in 1987, and in 1998 was the Law School’s “Lawyer in Residence.”  In 2011 he was given Seattle University’s Professional Achievement Award.  He is a former board member of the Washington State Trial Lawyers, a member of the board of directors of Bainbridge Youth Services, former President of the Governor-appointed Board of Regents at Washington State University.

Bill is married to Julie Marler and has three daughters, Morgan, Olivia, and Sydney.

EDUCATION

1987 –  J.D. Seattle University School of Law

1982 –  B.A.s Political Science, Economics, English, Washington State University

AWARDS AND DISTINCTIONS

2013 – Seattle University Distinguished Law Graduate Award

2011- Seattle University Professional Achievement Award

2011 to Present – ABA Journal “Blawg 100” Best Legal Blogs

2010 – NSF Food Safety Leadership Award: Innovation in Education

2009 to Present –  Best Lawyers in America

2002 to Present –  Bar Register of Preeminent Attorneys

2008 –  Public Justice Award, Washington State Trial Lawyer’s Association

2008 – Outstanding Lawyer Award, Seattle/King County Bar Association

1998 to Present – “Super Lawyer”, Washington State Attorneys

1998 – 2004 Governor Appointee, Washington State University Board of Regents Chairman

1997 –  Distinguished Achievement Award, WSU College of Liberal Arts

PUBLICATIONS

2011 – Separating the Chaff From the Wheat: The Reality of Proving a Foodborne Illness Case. White Paper June.

2010 – Laywers, Microbiologists, and Safe Food
Microbiologist Magazine, Vol 11, No 2, June

2009 – Legal Issues for Food Safety:  What Every Food Professional Should Know
Food Safety and Quality Magazine, Volume 5, Issue 3 September

2009 – Serving Up Trouble
American Association of Justice Trial Magazine, Vol 45, No 2 February
2007 –  Food Safety and the CEO:(PDF) Keys to Bottom Line Success
Food Safety Magazine, October/November.

2005 –  Food Claims and Litigation (PDF)
Food Safety In-sight Newsletter by Environ Health Associates, Inc., February

2005 –  Separating the Chaff from the Wheat: How to Determine the Strength of a Foodborne Illness Claim (PDF)
Paper presented at Defense Research Institute meeting on Food Liability

2005 –  How to Keep Your Focus on Food Safety
Food Safety Magazine, June-July.

2004 –  How to Document a Food Poisoning Case
(co-authored with David Babcock) Trial Magazine, November

PROFILES

Poisoned: The True Story of the Deadly E. Coli Outbreak That Changed the Way Americans Eat, By Jeff Benedict

2016 – How one Attorney Is Trying to Make Food Safer, Civil Beat News, by Rui Kaneya August 22, 2016

2016 – This genius lawyer is our best hope against deadly food poisoning, by Kiera Butler Mother Jones May 20, 2016

2015 – Profile in Obsession: Bill Marler, By Naomi Tomky March 24, 2015

2015 – The New Yorker – A Bug in the System
The New Yorker, Wil S. Hylton, February 2, 2015.

2014 – Q&A: Food Safety Lawyer Bill Marler on What Not to Eat
The National Law Journal, Interview with Jenna Greene, November 3, 2014.

2012 – Bill Marler, Attorney, Blogger, and Food Safety Advocate, Talks Turkey (Or Spinach, Rather)
Miami New Times, Interview with Ily Goyanes, November 2.

2012 – Bill Marler Interview, Part Two: His Most Difficult Cases and Lobbying Congress
Miami New Times, Interview with Ily Goyanes, November 14.

2012 – Profiles in Public Health Law: Interview with William “Bill” Marler CDC Public Health Law News, July.

2012 – Food Safety Lawyer Bill Marler On Sprouts, Raw Milk, and Why “Local” Isn’t Always Safer Blisstree.com, Hanna Brooks Olsen, March 5.

2011 – Listeria outbreak draws Seattle lawyer to battle
Associated Press, Shannon Dininny, October 9.

2011 – Food-Borne Illness Attorney: Top Foods to Avoid
ABC News, Neal Karlinsky, September 29.

2011 – How to Keep Food Free of Salmonella: Lawsuits
The Atlantic, Barry Estabrook, August 31.

2011 – More Stomach-Churning Facts about the E. Coli Outbreak
New York Times, Mark Bittman, June 8.

2011 – Bill Marler: A Personal Injury Attorney and More
The Xemplar, Nicole Black, June 1.

2011 – Good Food Hero: Bill Marler, Food Safety Attorney
Good Food World, Gail Nickel-Kailing, May 23.

2011- Poisoned: The True Story of the Deadly E. coli Outbreak that Changed the Way Americans Eat.
Inspire Books, Jeff Benedict, May 15

2011 – New Book Chronicles Islander Marler’s Work.
Bainbride Island Review, Connie Mears, May 13.

2010 – Food Safety Lawyer Puts His Money Where Your Mouth Is
AOL News, Andrew Schneider, September 29

2009 – Food Safety Lawyer’s Wish: Put Me Out of Business
Seattle Times, Maureen O’Hagan, November 23

2009 – WSU Discourse on Food Safety, Courtesy Seattle Lawyer
Kitsap Sun, Tristan Baurick,  August 29

2009 – When Food Sickens, He Heads for Courthouse
Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Matt McKinney, June 24

2009 –  Bill Marler, The Food-Safety Litigator
Culinate, Miriam Wolf, April

2009 – Food Fight:Bill Marler’s Beef (PDF)
Washington Law & Politics, David Volk, May

2009 – Candidate for Top FSIS Job talks E. coli Testing, Irradiation, Education
The Meating Place, Ann Bagel Storck, February 6

2009 – Five Minutes with Bill Marler, Well Known Lawyer, Food Safety Activist
CattleNetwork, Chuck Jolley, February 5

2009 – Heath Surveillance the Key to Fresh Produce
The Packer, Tom Karst, February 3

2008 – Seattle Food Contamination Expert in China as Tainted Milk Sickens Thousands of Kids
Seattle Health Examiner, September 23

2008 –  E. Coli Lawyer Is Busier Than Ever
Associated Press, February 4

2007 –  Legally Speaking: The Food Poisoning Lawyer
The Southeast Texas Record, John G. Browning, November 20

2007 –  The Nation’s Leading Food-borne Illness Attorney Tells All
Washington State Magazine, Hannelore Sudermann, August

2007 –  Back to Court: Burst of E. coli Cases Returns Jack in the Box Litigator to the Scene
Meat and Poultry News, Steve Bjerklie, June 8

2007 – Food Fight
Portland Oregonian, Alex Pulaski, March

2007 –  Mr. Food Illness Esquire
QSR Magazine, Fred Minnick, February

2006 –  Seattle Attorney Dominates Food-Borne Illness Litigation
KPLU, October 20

2006 –  How a Tiny Law Firm Made Hay Out of Tainted Spinach
The Wall Street Journal, Heather Won Tesoriero and Peter Lattman, September 27

2005 – Bill Marler – Education Holds Key in Tainted Food Fight
King County Bar Association Bar Bulletin, Ross Anderson, November

2001 –  THE INSIDE STORY: How 11 Schoolkids Got $4.75 Million in E. coli Lawsuit
MeatingPlace.com, Bryan Salvage, March 7

2001 –  Hammer Time: Preparation Pays When Disputes Escalate to Lawsuits
Meat & Poultry Magazine, David Hendee

2001 –  For Seattle Attorney, A Bacterium Brings Riches—and Enemies
The Wall Street Journal, Rachel Zimmerman

2001 –  The Bug That Ate The Burger
Los Angeles Times, Emily Green, June

1999 –  Courting Publicity, Attorney Makes Safe Food His Business
Seattle Post, Maggie Leung, September 7

Texas officials say all raw milk and other unpasteurized products from K-Bar Dairy should not be consumed and should immediately be discarded because the dairy has been linked to an antibiotic-resistant strain of Brucella bacteria that has hospitalized at least one person.

“At this time, it is uncertain how long Brucella (bacteria) may have been present in the raw milk from this dairy. Testing is ongoing in an attempt to answer that question,” according to the Monday alert from the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS).

Especially at risk is anyone who has consumed raw milk or other unpasteurized dairy products from K-Bar Dairy, which is in Paradise, TX, since June 1. These individuals are considered to be at high risk of contracting brucellosis.

However, all unpasteurized dairy products sold since Jan. 1 this year are suspect at this point. Anyone who has become ill this year after consuming raw dairy products from K-Bar should seek medical attention, even if the symptoms have subsided, according to the state health alert.

The health department did not indicate whether the dairy, which is licensed for on-farm sales of unpasteurized milk, is continuing to operate.

Grocery store chain Trader Joe’s is voluntarily recalling all lot codes of its Matcha Green Tea Ice Cream (SKU# 055740). There may be small metal pieces in the product.

No injuries or illnesses have been reported to date.

All potentially affected products have been removed from store shelves and destroyed.

Anyone who purchased Trader Joe’s Matcha Green Tea Ice Cream shouldn’t eat it. They are advised to discard the product or return it to any Trader Joe’s location for a full refund.

Last month, Trader Joe’s recalled its Mikawaya Chocolate Chocolate Mochi Ice Cream because it possibly contained peanuts, which weren’t listed on its ingredient label.

Garfield County Public Health staff hopes to speak with individuals who attended the Rifle Rodeo Monday, June 5. The agency is investigating several dozen calls from people who became ill after attending the event. The department began receiving calls June 6 from citizens with gastrointestinal complaints. Symptoms of the illness included nausea, cramping and diarrhea. These individuals had all attended the Rifle Rodeo, a private event at the Garfield County Fairgrounds the previous evening. Approximately 200 people attended the rodeo.

Public Health is asking people who attended the event to contact the department, even if they did not become ill.

“It appears that people became ill approximately six hours following the end of the rodeo event Monday night,” said Billy Harkins, Environmental Health Specialist with the Garfield County Consumer Protection Program. “We are still investigating the cause of the outbreak, and are taking all possible factors into consideration. The total number of individuals who became ill and the duration of their illness has not been confirmed.” Garfield County officials are working with the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment to determine the cause of the illness.

To pinpoint the source of the outbreak, Garfield County is attempting to contact individuals with and without symptoms who attended the Rifle Rodeo at the Garfield County Fairgrounds on Monday, June 5.

Due to the short onset and short duration of the illnesses reported to Public Health staff following a privately organized event at the fairgrounds, it has been determined the reported illnesses did NOT develop from a waterborne issue, an airborne issue, e-coli, salmonella, Hepatitis A, or anything transferred person to person.

Due to the quick reporting by event attendees, Public Health was able to respond in an immediate and comprehensive manner to contain further outbreak.

Samples have, and are being sent to a state lab for testing. Public Health staff hopes to receive data next week, but this depends on the number of investigations of both ill and well people that staff is still in the process of conducting.

June 5 Rifle Rodeo attendees are asked to call 970-625-5200, ext. 8128, and a Public Health representative will return the call to complete a brief questionnaire that will help to track down the source of the outbreak.

Screen Shot 2017-05-07 at 10.57.32 AMPerdue Foods LLC., a Gainesville, Ga. establishment, is recalling approximately 2,148 pounds of chicken sausage products that may be contaminated with extraneous materials, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.

The Italian chicken sausage links were produced on March 27, 2017. The following products are subject to recall:  [View Labels (PDF Only)]

  • 24-oz. plastic packages containing eight links of fully cooked ready to eat “PERDUE HARVESTLAND Italian Style Organic Chicken Sausage” bearing package code 64405 and a sell or freeze by date of 6/25/17.

The products subject to recall bear establishment number “P-2617” inside the USDA mark of inspection. These items were shipped to a retail distributor in Connecticut and Maryland.

The problem was discovered on May 5, 2017, when FSIS was notified by the firm that they had received three consumer complaints of blue plastic materials in the sausage.

There have been no confirmed reports of injury due to consumption of these products.  Anyone concerned about an injury or illness should contact a healthcare provider.

Consumers who have purchased these products are urged not to consume them.