Neogen blog: A look back at 2012

Ah, nostalgia. It’s been a busy year here at the Neogen blog. We’ve covered quite a range of stuff, from food safety reforms to happy elephants in Thailand (scroll down for details – hint, hint) to decoding DNA.

So kick back, relax and take a stroll down the Neogen blog’s memory lane.

Food safety

Three countries have either approved or introduced legislation to majorly overhaul food safety

While the U.S. still awaits rules stemming from the 2011 Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), Canada passed its own major food safety overhaul. The Philippines also introduced food safety legislation.

Report: Despite food safety reforms, illnesses continue to rise

Safe Food for Canadians Act moves to the next round of legislative process

Philippines may overhaul food safety system

Although FSMA rules are delayed, plenty of others came out

Almost two years after the signing of FSMA, rules have yet to come out. Still, many other new rules aimed at upping food safety were imposed this year.

Final portion of Egg Safety Rule in effect

FSIS to step up residue testing in eggs, poultry and meat

FSIS to being routine sampling in June for six Shiga toxin-producing strains of E. coli in raw beef trim

FSIS aims to change E. coli O157:H7 testing program for beef trim

Rhode Island Senate approves new food allergen bill, while U.S. Congress considers additional food allergen-related legislation

Full coverage here.

Deadly methanol poisoning outbreak in the Czech Republic

The outbreak, caused by counterfeit alcohol tainted with the industrial solvent methanol, killed more than two dozen people and led to a crackdown on counterfeit booze.

Some liquor sales to resume in Czech Republic following methanol poisoning outbreak

Full coverage here.

Ractopamine usage and regulations caused uproar

It’s been a rollercoaster year for ractopamine, from new residue limits set by an international standards body to Russia restricting U.S. beef and pork.

Russian imposes restrictions on U.S. meat

Codex Alimentarius Commission sets new maximum residue limit on ractopamine

Full coverage here.

U.S. fourth confirmed case of mad cow disease

The dairy cow was never destined for human consumption.

Two farms quarantined, offspring of BSE infected cow tested

Full coverage here.

The “Aporkalypse” – Bacon shortage 2012

The Internet went nuts after a United Kingdom industry group announced there would be a shortage of the Web’s most beloved food – bacon. Other industry groups said there might not be a shortage, but prices may rise.

Bacon, pork shortage is “unavoidable,” according to U.K. industry group

 

Animal safety

West Nile infections spike

The U.S. saw the worst outbreak of West Nile virus since 1999.

CDC: West Nile infections climb another 25 percent

For full coverage, click here.

Hero dog gets treated at the University of California-Davis

A dog named Kabang saved her owner’s daughter and niece by throwing herself into a motorcycle that was about to hit the girls. The girls were saved but Kabang’s snout and upper part of her jaw were ripped from her face. After fundraising, she travelled from her home in the Philippines to UC-Davis for treatment.

Dog that lost half of snout saving two girls to get reconstructive surgery

Swine flu outbreak hits ag fairs

Hundreds of people fell ill in the Midwest after being exposed to sick pigs at fair exhibitions. Luckily, symptoms generally were mild.

CDC: Number of H2N2v confirmed cases hits more than 220

Avian flu hurts egg industry in country with world’s highest egg consumption

Millions of chickens had to be culled following the outbreak in the Mexican state of Jalisco, following an outbreak of avian flu. Jalisco produces roughly 50 percent of the eggs in Mexico.

Egg shortage in Mexico follows avian flu outbreak

We got a lot of great advice from Neogen’s vets and experts

Neogen’s vets and experts are on the front lines of animal safety. From pigeon fever and biosecurity in equine facilities to hatchery water cleanliness to swine health, our experts have tackled a range of important animal safety topics.

Mosquito woes: Protecting horses from insect-borne illness

 Implementing a hatchery water treatment system is crucial to poultry health

Re-emergence of swine dysentery reinforces need for biosecurity

For posts from Neogen’s experts, click here.

 

Genomics

The wheat genome was unraveled

Officials hope it will help increase wheat yields and food security.

USDA project sequences wheat genome

 

Agriculture

Drought 2012 and the ensuing aflatoxin outbreak

More than half of the lower 48 states in the U.S. experienced drought this summer, leading to a spike in aflatoxin, which is produced by mold that thrives in drought conditions.

U.S. drought causes concern domestically and abroad

Drought 2012 and aflatoxin: What you need to know

For all drought coverage, click here.

Michigan lost almost all of its cherry crop

A warm spring followed by a cold snap caused the crop to drop 97 percent from the previous year.

Report: Michigan cherry crop almost a total loss

 

Toxicology

Concerns about designer drugs grew

Designer drugs linked to several high profile violent crimes raised concerns about their usage.

Synthetic marijuana leads to more than 10,000 hospital visits a year

Breaking down bath salts: Reports increasing in recent years

 

Corporate

We gave back

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

Between donations of products or funds, Neogen donated to range of causes this year, from elephants in Thailand to therapy and service pets.

MSU students study aflatoxin, fumonisin in Africa

A life-changing journey: MSU vet student works with elephants in Thailand

Neogen partners with Companions for Heroes

Leading the way: Neogen donates to Leader Dogs for the Blind

We grew

Neogen’s acquisitions of two businesses this year have enhanced our standing as a leader in food and animal safety.

Neogen acquires Igenity from Merial

 Neogen acquires Macleod Pharmaceuticals

 

From all of us at Neogen, here’s to a fantastic 2013!

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