Hepatitis A Frozen Berry Outbreak Sickens More in Europe | Food Safety News

At least 71 people in Europe have been sickened with Hepatitis A in an outbreak believed to be linked to frozen berries served in smoothies, according to the latest report from Eurosurveillance. That’s an increase of 15 cases since Food Safety News first reported on the outbreak April 17.

There are at least 35 people sickened in Denmark, and another 36 sickened between Finland, Norway and Sweden. Swedish authorities say the country is experiencing ten times the normal number of Hepatitis A cases so far this year.

Most case patients reported consuming berries or smoothies around the time of exposure, but investigators have not identified a specific brand or berry origin.

via Hepatitis A Frozen Berry Outbreak Sickens More in Europe | Food Safety News.

Chinese Silkies seized at Dulles Airport | WJLA.com

Customs and Border Protection authorities seized 20 small, raw chickens, known as Chinese Siklies, from the man on April 22 after a flight from Vietnam to Washington.

Officials say that the chickens, which seems to still be fully intact, ran the risk of spreading infectious disease, including avian flu.

“Highly pathogenic avian influenza and Exotic Newcastle diseases are serious threats, which, if introduced into the U.S., could adversely affect our nation’s poultry industry and hurt our international trade,” according to Christopher Hess, the port director for CBP in Washington.

The Chinese Silkies were taken from the man and burned.

via Chinese Silkies seized at Dulles Airport | WJLA.com.

Homosexuals Not Allowed To Enter Lebanon?

A Separate State of Mind | A Blog by Elie Fares

Our minister of interior Marwan Charbel, also known as the gift that keeps on giving, issued a statement on the matter:

The above statement hasn’t been altered. It’s what the minister said verbatim (link). “Lebanon is against gays,” he said. “The Lebanese law considers them a felony and I wonder if after France allowed same-sex marriages, we allow them to enter Lebanon?”

Beware gay people, Lebanon will enforce some new airport regulations to ban homosexuals entry to its land. Lebanon is a no-gay zone, according to Marwan Charbel that is.

The statement will resonate with all the people who approve of what the mayor of Dekwane did (link), the people who will applaud Marwan Charbel for “protecting their families,” the people who are busy putting up posters such as this around their towns:

Lebanon, the country with entrenched homophobia, isn’t changing anytime soon.

PS: Mr. Charbel…

View original post 13 more words

Chickpea Farmers Wanted in America for Hummus Invasion: Move Over Tobacco! | Green Prophet

Wonder why smart Lebanon or Palestinian farmers and investors are not marketing to US and Canadian markets?


As hummus, a staple of Middle Eastern cuisine, gains popularity among Americans seeking healthful snacks, tobacco farmers open their fields to chick peas as Pepsico starts to develop new hummus food science with an Israeli company, Strauss. Both businesses see massive potential in developing American chick pea strains for a number of good reasons, some perhaps less good. Let’s start with the good: homemade hummus or that bought from a kiosk which makes it fresh, is high in protein, low in salt and fat, and can be free of artificial additives.  Made with inexpensive chickpeas, it can easily be whipped up at home.

But in America, the Mecca of fast food, the quickest way to a consumer’s heart is through store-bought pre-made, conveniently packaged eating opportunities.

Market-research firm Information Resources Inc. says US food retailers rang up $530 million in sales of “refrigerated flavored spreads” (a food category dominated by hummus), a 25% jump over 2010.

via Chickpea Farmers Wanted in America for Hummus Invasion: Move Over Tobacco! | Green Prophet.

The awakening of the German ‘netizen?’ | Transatlantic Voices | DW.DE | 02.05.2013

The clash of opinions about DT’s move essentially stems from divergent views of what the Internet really is all about. Obermann and the economists consider the Internet a marketplace where customers choose between service packages and companies struggle for survival (especially the major telecoms which have seen their old business model evaporate). If you accept these premises, DT’s arguments actually make sense.

However, the picture looks radically different for those who take a citizen-centric view. From this vantage point, the web is primarily a public space in which citizens should be able to express themselves freely. It is for citizens to fight for and use the freedoms of the digital commons – as “netizens.” Lawmakers and regulators should do their part to ensure a free Internet. Upholding “net neutrality” (alongside privacy and data protection) is a cornerstone of this effort. Its foundation is the conviction that all Internet traffic should be treated equally.

via The awakening of the German ‘netizen?’ | Transatlantic Voices | DW.DE | 02.05.2013.

Saudi Press Release On Novel Coronavirus (nCoV-EMC) Cases

Saudi Press Release On Novel Coronavirus (nCoV-EMC) Cases.

Announced the Ministry of Health Monitoring (7) cases of infection Corona new during the past few days in the province of Al-Ahsa, died, including five people, two in intensive care.

The ministry said in a statement released by the evening that The Ministry of Health is doing all the precautionary measures for Mkhaltin for people by routers scientific local and global sampling of them to see if there are cases among them, indicating that it recorded so far 17 confirmed cases of the disease worldwide.

Backyard Wisdom

Have viewed and thought the same – good expression in essay on how non-human species display humane behavior…

Steve A. Wiggins

From where I was sitting, the robin appeared to be asleep. It was an overcast and chilly spring morning, so I had to admit that I was a little envious. Our back yard is divided from the neighboring landlord’s property by a kind of picket fence with square-topped stanchions every ten feet or so. The robin was sleeping on the stanchion closest to an old maple tree. A wiggle of movement caught my eye. Further down the fence, maybe seven or eight pickets back, sat an impatient gray squirrel. It was sitting up on its haunches, and flashing its bushy tail in an obvious attempt to draw attention to itself. The robin sat, implacable. The squirrel looked around like a nervous commuter who will be late for work. It hoped a picket or two closer. Up on its haunches, looked around, jiggled its tail. Still the robin sat. The squirrel…

View original post 331 more words

Dutch man who sold horse meat labeled as Halal beef given 50,000-euro fine

A Dutch appeals court has upheld the fraud conviction of a man who sold horse meat labeled as Halal beef to two French traders, but reduced his punishment to a six-month suspended sentence and a 50,000-euro ($65,000) fine.

Jan Fasen was convicted in 2012 for purchasing hundreds of thousands of kilograms of horsemeat from Brazil and Mexico, mislabeling it as beef slaughtered according to Muslim dietary laws, and then selling it on to two unnamed French buyers.

via Dutch man who sold horse meat labeled as Halal beef given 50,000-euro fine.

I think the people he sold it to should be named and I hope that a good number of believers in Islam line up to sue him for  endangering their physical and moral health!