Apr 6, 2007 (CIDRAP News) – ConAgra, the producer of peanut butter linked to a nationwide Salmonella outbreak in February, announced yesterday that its own investigation found that moisture might have triggered the growth of the bacteria.Inadvertent moisture in the company’s Sylvester, Ga., production facility could have allowed the growth of dormant Salmonella organisms that were likely present in raw peanuts or peanut dust, ConAgra stated in a press release yesterday.Stephanie Childs, ConAgra spokesperson, told the Associated Press that the moisture came from a roof that leaked during a rainstorm and a faulty sprinkler system that went off twice. The company cleaned the plant thoroughly and repaired the sprinkler system after the moisture problems occurred, she said.The Salmonella outbreak began in August and sickened 425 patients in 44 states. After the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) linked Salmonella enterica serovar Tennessee isolates from sick patients to their consumption of Peter Pan products and certain jars of Great Value peanut butter, both made at the Sylvester, Ga., plant, ConAgra recalled the products on Feb 14. S enterica typically causes fever and nonbloody diarrhea that resolves in a week.On Mar 1, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that its investigators found S enterica in samples collected at the ConAgra plant, suggesting that the contamination occurred before the product reached consumers.ConAgra, in its press release, detailed several steps it will take to improve the safety of its food products. The company:Established a new position, vice president of global food safety, and appointed Paul A. Hall, a nationally recognized food safety expert, to the postFormed a Food Safety Advisory Committee, headed by Michael Doyle, director of the Center for Food Safety at the University of GeorgiaApproved a plan to install new machinery throughout the plantIn response to ConAgra’s announcement, Michael Herndon, an FDA spokesperson, told CIDRAP News that “The FDA’s mission is to protect and promote the public health and to that end supports ConAgra’s steps to help safeguard the food supply as outlined in their release.”The FDA’s investigation at the plant is ongoing, he said.ConAgra said it has contracted with a third-party manufacturer to make Peter Pan products while plant renovations are under way at the Sylvester, Ga., plant. It said it expected to resume shipping Peter Pan products to retailers this summer and reopen its plant in August.
SoccerBatesville Boys Varsity blanked Shelbyville 3-0.JV battle to a 0-0 tie.Submitted by Batesville Coach Chris Fox.Batesville Girls winners over Lawrenceburg 1-0.Batesville JV won 2-1.Batesville vs. Lburg (9-10)Submitted by Batesville Coach Kyle Laker.Seymour Girls beat Greensburg 3-0.Greensburg vs. Seymour (9-10)Submitted by Var Vee.Oldenburg Academy Boys victorious against South Ripley 5-1.South Ripley at Oldenburg Academy (9-10)Submitted by Var Vee.Cross CountryEast Central Invitational-Division II.Batesville Boys and Girls Team Champs.East Central CC Invite-Boys (9-10)East Central CC Invite-Girls (9-10)Submitted by Batesville Coaches Tom Barnett and Lisa Gausman.Jac-Cen-Del Middle School Girls were victorious against Switzerland County.SC Middle School Boys won.JCD vs. SC CC (9-10)Submitted by JCD Coach Steve Narwold.VolleyballOldenburg Academy won against Triton Central 25-22, 25-10, 19-25, 25-14.Oldenburg Academy at Triton Central VB (9-10)Submitted by Var Vee.Milan 8th Grade Volleyball Team defeated Rising Sun 25-23, 25-15.Milan 7th won in 3 games.Submitted by Milan AD John Prifogle.The St. Louis 7th grade Volleyball team lost in 2 games to South Dearborn 16-25, & 20-25. Though they lost, the 7th grade played aggressively during both games. Top servers for the night were Lydia Gigrich with 5 points, & Phoebe Kroen & Samantha Sheets with 3 each.The STL 8th grade team was victorious over the Squires in 2 games 25-19 & 25-24. The Lady Cardinals played tough to pull off a win. Top servers for the night were Jenna Ertel with 9 points & Audrey Amberger with 7.Submitted by St. Louis Coach Jill Reidy.North Decatur 7th won against Batesville 25-16, 25-24.Batesville 8th won 14-25, 25-23, 15-12.Submitted by the Batesville Coaches.SwimmingSunman Dearborn Boys and Girls defeated Richmond.The boys score was 136-5. The girls score was 134-25.Alexis deLong broke the school record in the 200 Individual Medley while leading The SDMS Aqua Trojans to victory.SDMS vs. Richmond (9-10)Submitted by SDMS Coach Brandon Loveless.TennisMilan Varsity defeated Oldenburg Academy 5-0.Milan’s JV also won 3-0.Milan vs. OA Tennis (9-10)Submitted by Milan Coach Zach Wade.