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Egg Recall, Salmonella, and the Foods We Eat

September 1st, 2010

 

As if factory farming does not already have many consumers concerned over the foods they eat, the recent egg recall is another stark reality into the price we pay when we put our faith in large, industrial-scale farms and feedlots. Foods produced and/or raised on many industrial-scale farms are exposed to chemical fertilizers, synthetic pesticides or extremely unhealthy conditions, as we’re finding out from the egg recall.

According to Bloomberg Businessweek’s August 30, 2010 story ‘FDA Finds Rodents, Manure Piles at Farms in Egg Recall,’ violations at two Iowa farms included the presence of manure pits, rodents and dead flies, as well as other disturbing observances. The story also notes that at least 550 million eggs have been recalled so far. It’s beyond awful and enough to prompt more and more people to consider local farmers markets and/or grow their own, for the mere fact that they can get to know their local farmers and their farm practices and have more control over knowing how the foods they eat are being produced, cared for and handled. If you’re concerned or wondering if your eggs are safe, here is a list of what numbered designations are included in the egg recall from the Food and Drug Administration.

Salmonella germs, named after an American veterinarian named Daniel E. Salmon (1850-1914), are microscopic living creatures that are transmitted from the feces of animals or people to other animals or people. In humans, Salmonella are generally transmitted to humans by eating foods contaminated with animal feces. Contaminated foods can include beef, eggs, milk, poultry and vegetables. Vegetables can be contaminated with Salmonella because many vegetables are fertilized with animal manure. If the manure is contaminated with Salmonella it can spread to vegetables.

Abdominal cramps, diarrhea and fever are symptoms of Salmonella and can develop 12 to 72 hours after infection. Salmonella generally lasts 4 to 7 days. Click here to learn more information about Salmonella from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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