Researchers identify strain linked to Irish Potato Famine

A plant pathogen strain responsible for a famine that killed a million people in 19th century Ireland has been identified by United Kingdom researchers.

The study, led by The Sainsbury Laboratory, identified an early strain of Phytophthora infestans as the pathogen responsible for the blight that caused the Irish Potato Famine, according to the BBC.

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U.S. BSE status changed to “negligible”

The U.S. recently achieved an important distinction in regard to its mad cow disease status.

At its annual meeting, the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) voted to recognize the U.S. as having “negligible risk” for bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE, or mad cow). Israel, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands and Slovenia also received the same distinction.

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USDA publishes final COOL rule

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued its final version of the changes to country-of-origin labeling (COOL) for muscle cut commodities last week.

The rule changes how these commodities are labeled to require the origin designation to include information not only on where the meat came from (currently often listed as “Product of the U.S.”), […]

The belated links: Your midweek news fix

Editor’s note: Happy Wednesday, all! The links will be back to their normal home on Monday next week.

Don’t have time to scour the internet for the latest food safety, animal safety, life sciences and agriculture news? Relax, we’ve got it covered.

Food safety

Court extends deadline for FSMA rules – Food Safety News

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Tox Tuesdays: Spice

Welcome to the first edition of Tox Tuesdays, our new biweekly post that will highlight an ongoing issue related to toxicology, from drugs of concern to the latest discoveries. For more information on Neogen’s toxicology division, please click here.

Courtesy of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency

In recent years, designer drugs such as synthetic […]

Get ready to grill with these food safety tips

Summer sun and warmer weather have arrived just in time to break out the grill for Memorial Day weekend.

For many, it is a long weekend as Monday marks Memorial Day, a time to remember those who died serving in the U.S. military.

Memorial Day always is the last Monday in May. Many have the […]

Practicing pet safety in the summer

Warm days are upon us!

We aren’t the only ones who enjoy summertime – pets also seem to relish the sun and warmth. However, it’s important certain precautions are taken to ensure pets are kept healthy and happy, especially given how toasty it can get.

Check out these tips from the American Kennel Club (AKC) […]

A permanent place: MSU alum newest vet at Thailand’s Elephant Nature Park

Erica and Mae Tee (Photo courtesy of Erica Ward).

Big changes are coming for Erica Ward.

The Fowlerville, Mich. native, who recently graduated from Michigan State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine, is the newest staff veterinarian at Thailand’s Elephant Nature Park (ENP), where she’s volunteered for several years.

She first traveled to the park, […]

U.S. to allow imports of some Italian cured meats

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is set to lift a decades-old ban on many cured meats from Italy on May 28.

The lifting of the ban – which has been in place for about 40 years – comes after the USDA declared certain areas of Italy free of swine vesicular disease, which can survive […]

Safe Food for Canadians Act implementation begins

The Canadian government has taken the next step in rolling out the Safe Food for Canadians Act.

Last week, officials unveiled the government’s action plan, which aims to provide additional information to consumers, create more effective inspections and enhance food safety rules, according to a statement from the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA).

Several food […]