Friday, August 20, 2010

Egg Safety - Is a Partnership

To Be Safe Takes Effort on All

It was unfortunate to learn of an egg recall due to suspected bacteria in the egg packs. This casts a shadow on all producers as consumers question are their eggs really safe. In my travels I can say that farms are trying to do the right thing in protecting the safety of eggs and egg products for the consumer. The producers' families often are consuming the same products as the public they serve.

Due to the work of state egg quality assurance programs like the PA
egg quality assurance program (PEQAP) the numbers of eggs with bacteria seen has been reduced significantly. Further, with new FDA regulation on larger farms coming soon, egg testing for bacteria will be strengthened in areas of the country that did not have state programs before. Regardless of flock size food safety should be practiced.

But the important message is that when consuming eggs, the eggs should be cooked fully to kill any harmful bacteria. It was undercooked or raw eggs that were suspected in the current cases. Eggs should be stored in their cartons at the bottom of the refrigerator where it is the coldest. Hand washing and handling foods carefully in the kitchen are important to ensure food safety.

Other links:
CDC - Tips to Reduce Your Risk of Salmonella from Eggs

The Egg Safety Center

Egg Nutrition Center

Monday, August 9, 2010

The First Steps of IPM

Did you see what I saw?

The first cornerstone of good integrated pest management (IPM) is the use of scouting for pests. Whether we are talking mice, weeds or even flies it is very important to determine just what you have and how many. By doing this on a routine basis you can measure how effective your pest control program is running. Without scouting, you are running like a car down the road without a speedometer. You know you are moving - but you don't know how fast.

When making a change to a pest control program, be sure to scout after allowing the program change to fully run. This change then will be measured against past performance. If done on a routine basis scouting will map your progress through time with hopefully good results.