You could also read the book Poisoned.

A 1993 E. coli outbreak linked Jack in the Box hamburgers sickened 700 people and acted as a wake up call about the dangers of food-borne illness. More than 20 years later, how far have we come?

In early 1993, the Washington State health department warned that a bacterium most Americans had never heard of, E. coli O157:H7, was making dozens of people sick—and spreading rapidly. The likely culprit: undercooked hamburgers from the Jack in the Box fast-food chain. Ultimately, more than 700 people fell ill and four children died during what proved to be one of the most significant food poisoning outbreaks in U.S. history.

The “Jack in the Box” outbreak was a wake-up call about the dangers in the food supply, the first time that many Americans realized that eating dinner could be deadly. It led to major changes in industry practices and government oversight of the food supply. But, more than 20 years later, how safe is the food supply?

  • sanitarian

    Perhaps a better questions to ask are “what are the benchmarks for food safety, and who controls or regulates food safety?” (–think carfully on this and one may realize that regulators are not in control….)

    Much has happened to shape and redefine food safety since E.coli O157:H7, anything from Norovirus to food allergens. The one common thread as this food safety definition continues to evolve, (as in one definition of public health, a redefining of the unacceptable), oversight at the very top of a food supplier, purveyor, food manager, restaurant, (insert your food supplier/venue/vendor, etc. here), you will find that management oversight is perhaps the most critical link in protecting the food/food supply. Sadly, regulatory mechanisms are not a constant and perhaps (through case law, redefining codes), those that manage and control a food/food product may be found the only party that can fully assure food safety. How can we shore up management control and oversight? Many of our systems have failed, and have been I’ll prepared to anticipate new hazards.

    • LogicPolice

      So are you saying the foxes guarding the hen house is how it is….or how you wish it to be?