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BUSINESS
October 7, 2013 | By Tiffany Hsu
The U.S. Department of Agriculture issued a public health alert Monday afternoon, saying it had linked some raw chicken products produced in California to a salmonella outbreak. The agency's Food Safety and Inspection Service said it had associated chicken produced by Foster Farms at three California facilities with strains of Salmonella Heidelberg. So far, 278 illnesses have been reported in 18 states, with most cases occurring in California. The outbreak is ongoing, according to the USDA . Investigators have yet to trace the illnesses to a specific product or production period, but said that raw items from the plants in question will bear one of the establishment numbers P6137, P6137A or P7632.
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OPINION
August 2, 2013 | By Felice J. Freyer and Irene M. Wielawski
The debate in Congress about cutting the food stamp program has sparked predictable clashes between those who want to help the poor and those who want to cut government spending. But strangely missing from the arguments is a shocking fact: The public, including Congress, knows almost nothing about how the program's $80 billion is spent. What foods are being purchased by the 47 million Americans who rely on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP (the official name for food stamps)
SCIENCE
June 28, 2013 | By Deborah Netburn
Public schoolchildren have exactly one more school year to buy high-calorie sandwich cookies and sugary energy drinks from vending machines and snack bars at school. Beginning in the 2014-15 school year, public schools across the country will have to comply with new standards for snacks sold on their campuses. Those new standards include limits on calorie, fat, sodium and sugar for all foods and drinks sold during the day at 100,000 schools. Doughnuts and cookies will be out, baked chips and granola bars will be in. Sugary drinks like fruit punch and sports drinks will be replaced by no-calorie flavored water and diet sodas.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 1, 2013 | By Randy Lewis
Musicians can breathe a little easier while traveling, with the submission to Congress of a U.S. Department of Agriculture report addressing provisions of the Lacey Act that protect endangered wildlife, fish and plants. The legislation had been causing snafus for musicians carrying vintage instruments made of materials protected by the act. Since a major amendment to the century-old act was passed in 2008, vintage instruments as well as newer ones made from old stockpiles of exotic woods have come under increased scrutiny by customs officials when musicians enter or re-enter the U.S. with those instruments.
NATIONAL
May 3, 2013 | By John M. Glionna
The battle over the opening of the nation's first domestic horse slaughterhouse since a government ban six years ago has ramped up as a company in Roswell, N.M., moves closer to reinstituting the practice. Activists throughout the West say they are preparing for a public-relations battle if the owners of Valley Meat Co. receive a federal permit to begin killing horses. “This is going to happen and we need to stop it for so many reasons -- moral, healthwise, economic, the whole ball of wax,” animal advocate Yvette Dobbie told the Los Angeles Times.
NEWS
May 1, 2013 | By Russ Parsons
The USDA decision late last week to allow imports of more Italian cured meats already has food lovers salivating. Ask them for particulars and they will reply almost in unison: “ Culatello. ” “I'm looking forward to everything, but the main one would be culatello ,” says Marco Guidi, whose family has run the Italian specialty food distributor Guidi Marcello in Santa Monica for more than 30 years. Almost unknown in this country, culatello is the “heart” of a prosciutto ham, removed and cured separately. It has a silky texture and profound pork flavor.
NEWS
April 30, 2013 | By Russ Parsons
Fans of Italian cured meat products such as culatello , pancetta and salami are already smacking their lips. And so are the folks who make the wonderful salumi , so many of which have been unavailable in the United States -- until now. On Friday, the Department of Agriculture quietly published a determination in the Federal Register that six Italian regions are now clear of an obscure malady of pigs called swine vesicular disease ...
NEWS
April 28, 2013 | By Jonathan Gold
Are weeks gray without a sliver of Tuscan lardo? Do you crave coppa made from Cinta Senese pigs? Have you ever considered attaching a gold chain to a whole prosciutto in an attempt to persuade a customs inspector that it was a kicky Fendi bag? You may be in luck. According to the Italian wire service ANSA, the U.S. Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services announced Friday that the long-standing USDA ban on the import of Italian cured meats will be lifted starting May 28, and presumably the flood of salami, bresaola and pancetta will start washing into U.S. markets and restaurants not long thereafter.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 3, 2013 | By Darren McQuade, Fox40
A 25-pound feral cat was captured and neutered by a San Joaquin County animal rescue group after a neighbor mistook him for a mountain lion. Residents in the community of Mountain House call the big feline Man Face. “Man Face, yeah that's what we call him,” said neighbor Jimmy Sales. “He is a real mean cat. He beats up all the cats in the neighborhood.” Sales told FOX40 in Sacramento he would not mistake Man Face for a mountain lion but reiterated that the cat is really big. Neighbors are hoping Man Face will calm down after his neutering.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 3, 2013
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has launched an investigation into the Dohoney Glatt Kosher meat market as the controversy enters the court system. Join us at 9 a.m. as we discuss the latest on this small-business controversy with Times reporter Matt Stevens. The owner of Doheny, Michael Engelman, faces accusations of selling meat that was not properly certified under kosher rules. Last week, a council of rabbis pulled Doheny's kosher certification and, in a statement Friday, raised the possibility of legal action.
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