Posted by: Bike Rider | January 21, 2009

FDA confirms the source for the Salmonella Typhimurium Outbreak

<<copied  from the FDA’s web page>>

January 19, 2009: The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is conducting a very active and dynamic investigation into the source of the Salmonella Typhimurium outbreak.  At this time, the FDA, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and state partners have traced sources of Salmonella Typhimurium contamination to a plant owned by Peanut Corporation of America (PCA), which manufactures peanut butter and peanut paste—a concentrated product consisting of ground, roasted peanuts—that are both distributed to food manufacturers to be used as an ingredient in many commercially produced products including cakes, cookies, crackers, candies, cereal and ice cream. In addition, PCA peanut butter is distributed to and institutionally served in such settings as long-term care facilities and cafeterias.

The FDA has notified PCA that product samples originating from its Blakely, Georgia (GA.), processing plant have been tested and found positive for Salmonella by laboratories in the states of Minnesota and Connecticut.  Connecticut and Minnesota have reported to FDA that samples of King Nut peanut butter tested in those states are a genetic match to the strain of Salmonella associated with the nationwide outbreak of Salmonella Typhimurium.  The results from the Connecticut Department of Health Laboratory are from an unopened container of King Nut peanut butter.  FDA wishes to acknowledge the Connecticut laboratory, Infectious Disease Section and Department of Consumer Protection as well as health officials in Minnesota for their efforts.
King Nut is a distributor of PCA product. This information, along with the results available from laboratory testing and the CDC epidemiological analysis, have now led FDA to confirm that the source of this outbreak is peanut butter and peanut paste produced by PCA at its Blakely, Ga. processing plant.

Click here to read more–>

Among several products affected under this recall, Clif has initiated a voluntary product recall of several of their items which contain peanut butter or peanut butter paste.  Read more here.

The list of companies who have decided to recall their products is quite extensive.  Please check on the FDA’s web page for a complete list of companies affected by this action.

Posted by: Bike Rider | January 20, 2009

What’s a cyclist to do?

Let’s look at the last several weeks, shall we?

  • The temperature hasn’t been above 40 F in…well, along time.  If it has, it either rained, snowed or both.
  • There’s about 4″ of snow on the ground from what the National Weather Service called “snow showers”.
  • A stiff westerly wind has been blowing since October bringing cold Arctic air from Alberta, Canada.
  • Salt, ciders, brine and other nasty materials litter the roads.
  • What hasn’t melted and dried is now ice and solid-packed snow.

So…what’s a cyclist to do?

Well, you could just wait it out for a nice sunny day-like in late April or you can brave the elements and saddle-up your trusty steed and head out on the road.  Of course you will need to contend with all the above, but at least you’re riding.

or

You could sign-up for a spinning class at the local gym or Y.  Sure, you’ll get on a “bike” and pretend to ride, but let’s be honest…it’s not the same, is it?  Not that I’m against spinning, it’s just that I really don’t get much from it.

Then there’s the trust, albeit painfully boring, trainer.  Like spinning, it’s just not the same.  Especially when the kids are hawking around the bike asking, “What’s that?”, “Whatcha doing Daddy?”, “Why are you riding your bike in the living room?”, etc..  So, for some peace-and-quite I moved the trainer to the basement.  Mind you, I’m probably breathing lethal amounts of Radon gas and other toxic airborne contaminates, but at least I can train with relative immunity.  That is until my cat comes down and starts investigating the noise.  Ugh!

I still ride the trainer every morning (much to my wife’s disapproval), but again, it’s not the same as being on the road.

Last weekend (during one of our Arctic freezes) I decided to participate in a indoor cycling ride at Hootfoot Cycles (and no, this is not a shameless plug either).  Unlike riding my antique trainer, this particular indoor ride adds a element of competition against 7 other riders.  Plus, the computer controls the resistance based on the terrain program selected.  A heart-rate and a cadence allow the rider to view their heart-rate, cadence and power output (in watts).  Pretty cool!

Beats the snot out of riding in the basement staring at the workbench.

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