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   ST. LOUIS (AP) - The number of acres Illinois farmers devote to corn crops this year is expected to dip slightly amid growers' plans to plant more soybeans statewide.
   The U.S. Department of Agriculture's annual forecast released Monday shows Illinois will have roughly 11.9 million acres of corn. That's down about 1 percent from the 12 million acres planted last year. In 2012, the acreage was 12.8 million.
   The USDA says soybeans will make up the difference, with the 9.5 million acres expected to be planted in Illinois coming in 1 percent higher than last year's 9.45 million acres.
   Nationwide, the USDA expects 91.7 million acres of corn to be sown this year, down about 4 percent from last year. Soybean acreage is expected to rise about 6 percent to 81.5 million acres.
 
Published in Local News
WASHINGTON, March 26, 2014 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is issuing a public health alert because Nutriom LLC, a Lacey, Wash. establishment, declined to expand its Feb. 15, 2014 recall to include an additional 118,541 pounds of processed egg products for which there is reason to conclude that they are unfit for human consumption.
 
The request for expansion was based on evidence collected during an ongoing investigation conducted by FSIS at this establishment. The company has refused to recall the additional processed egg products. As a consequence, FSIS intends to take appropriate action to remove the products from commerce.
 
FSIS issued the original recall because the company allegedly recorded false laboratory results. The company allegedly produced negative laboratory results for Salmonella when the results were actually positive, or reported that sampling had occurred when, in fact, no microbial testing was performed. FSIS requested the company to include additional products, but it declined. Because the product was not produced in accordance with FSIS requirements, it is unfit for human consumption.
 
The following products were shipped to co-packers for incorporation into consumer-size packages:
 
3,884-lb. super sack of “OvaEasy Plain Whole Egg” with the lot code “H0613-B”
1,031-lb. super sack of “OvaEasy Plain Whole Egg” with the lot code “I0413-A”
958-lb. super sack of “OvaEasy Plain Whole Egg” with the lot code “I0413-A”
4,422-lb. super sack of “OvaEasy Plain Whole Egg” with the lot code “L1713-A”
The following products were packaged in consumer-sized packages:
 
1.75-lb. packs of “OvaEasy Plain Whole Egg” with the Julian dates “0374,” “0384,” “2683” and “2693”
66-gram spray bottles of “Bak-Klene Egg Wash” with the lot code “L1013A”
1.17-lb. packs of “OvaEasy UGRA, Reduced Cholesterol” with the Julian dates “3129,” “3228,” “3229,” “3230,” “3231,” “3281,” “3282,” “3283,” “3284,” “3337,” “3338,” “3339” and “3340”
4.5-oz. cans of “OvaEasy Whole Plain Egg” with the Julian date “2883”
571-gram packs of “Vitovo Low Fat” with the Julian date “3193”
1.1-lb. bags of “OvaEasy Boil-in-Bag UGR, Heat & Serve (HS)” with the Julian dates “3161,” “3162,” “3182,” “3183,” “3188,” “3201,” “3202,” “3203,” “3204,” “3205,” “3208,” “3209,” “3210,” “3211,” “3212,” “3213,” “3220,” “3221” and “3222”
2-oz. packs of “OvaEasy Plain Whole Egg” with the Julian dates “0074,” “0084,” “0094,” “0354,” “0364,” “0374,” “2243,” “2253,” “2953,” “2963,” “3463,” “3473” and “3483”
66-gram spray bottles of “Panera Egg Wash” with the Julian dates “0104,” “0154,” “0164,” “0174,” “0214,” “0224,” “0234,” “0244,” “0284,” “0294,” “0304” and “0314”
2-oz. pack of “Wise Company, Wise Blend” with the Julian date “0943”
On Feb. 15, 2014, the company recalled 226,710 pounds of processed egg products. To read the recall release, click here.
   
The dried egg products were produced from May 2013 through January 2014, and bear the establishment number “INSPECTED EGG PRODUCTS PLANT 21493G” inside the USDA Mark of Inspection. These products were shipped nationwide and to U.S. military installations in the United States and abroad, and to Mexico.
   
FSIS inspects egg products under the Egg Products Inspection Act. FDA typically takes jurisdiction of egg products after they leave the egg facility if they are incorporated into FDA-regulated products. In this case, USDA handled the original recall rather than FDA because the products are in consumer packages with an identifiable USDA Mark of Inspection, and FSIS had jurisdiction over the product when the contamination occurred. FSIS and FDA are continuing to work together to ensure food safety, and the management of Recall 015-2014 is such an example.
   
FSIS advises all consumers to safely prepare and consume egg products that have been cooked to a temperature of 160° F. The only way to confirm that egg products are cooked to a temperature high enough to kill harmful bacteria is to use a food thermometer that measures internal temperature, http://1.usa.gov/1cDxcDQ.
   
Consumers with food safety questions can “Ask Karen,” the FSIS virtual representative available 24 hours a day at AskKaren.gov or via smartphone at m.askkaren.gov. The toll-free USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854) is available in English and Spanish and can be reached from l0 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Eastern Time) Monday through Friday. Recorded food safety messages are available 24 hours a day. The online Electronic Consumer Complaint Monitoring System can be accessed 24 hours a day at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/reportproblem.
Published in National News
Friday, 13 December 2013 09:07

Missouri farmers to receive drought relief

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Farmers in 27 Missouri counties will be eligible for federal aid because of drought conditions.
Gov. Jay Nixon says the U.S. Department of Agriculture issued a disaster declaration for 14 counties that have suffered from extreme or exceptional drought. Farmers in 13 adjoining counties also can receive aid.
Nixon says farmers in some northern and central Missouri counties continued to struggle from drought even as many parts of Missouri received sufficient precipitation this year.
The designation allows farmers to receive emergency loans from the federal Farm Service Agency.
The 14 primary counties in the designation are Adair, Chariton, Clark, Knox, Lewis, Macon, Mercer, Putnam, Randolph, Saline, Schuyler, Scotland, Shelby and Sullivan. The additional 13 counties are Audrain, Boone, Carroll, Cooper, Grundy, Harrison, Howard, Lafayette, Linn, Livingston, Marion, Monroe and Pettis.
 
Published in Local News
Wednesday, 23 October 2013 15:32

Tons of meat products recalled by USDA

WASHINGTON (AP) - Reser's Fine Foods in Topeka, Kan., is recalling about 22,800 pounds of potentially bacteria-tainted chicken, ham and beef products.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service announced Tuesday that the meat products may be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes. The meat was shipped to retailers and distributors in 27 states: Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

The USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service listed various "sell by" dates for the recalled products.

There have been no reports of illness. Listeria monocytogenes can cause listeriosis, an uncommon and potentially fatal disease. Symptoms can include high fever and severe headache.

 

Published in Local News
Wednesday, 03 July 2013 03:12

MO company expects horse slaughter approval

   A Missouri company expects to get the go ahead to slaughter horses after an Iowa company garnered federal approval yesterday.  USDA officials say Rains Natural Meats of Gallatin, Missouri could get permission later this week.

   The facility 75 miles north of Kansas City has the current capacity to slaughter 30 horses a week.  

   In 2005, the U.S. Congress effectively ban horse slaughter when it eliminated funding for USDA inspections.  The funding prohibition expired in 2011, effectively lifting the ban.

Published in Local News

   ST. LOUIS (AP) - Exactly how much the soggy spring has slowed farmers' efforts to plant their corn will become a bit clearer.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture on Monday was to issue its latest update on spring plantings.

A week ago, the USDA reported that just 12 percent of the nation's cornfields have been planted. That's about a quarter of what was planted by this date over the previous five years, and it marks the slowest start in decades in some states.

In Illinois, only 7 percent of the Illinois corn crop was sown.

Yet USDA estimates that while the wet start is expected to reduce the amount each acre produces this year, farmers are planting so much corn that they're still likely to bring in a record amount.

   

Published in Local News
Friday, 03 May 2013 01:23

Frozen pizza recalled by USDA and FDA

   WASHINGTON, May 2, 2013 – Nestlé Pizza Company, a Little Chute, WI establishment, is recalling an undetermined amount of frozen pizzas that may be contaminated with extraneous materials and are the subject of a recall administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), FSIS announced today.

   The following products are subject to USDA recall:

• California Pizza Kitchen® Limited Edition Grilled Chicken with Cabernet Sauce, UPC 71921 00781; production code is 3059525952.

• DiGiorno® Crispy Flatbread Pizza Tuscan Style Chicken, UPC 71921 02663; production codes are 3057525922 and 3058525921.

   Each product package above has an establishment number of P-5754.

   In addition, the following products are subject to FDA recall:

• DiGiorno® pizzeria!™ Bianca/White Pizza, UPC 71921 91484; production code is 3068525951.

• California Pizza Kitchen (CPK) Crispy Thin Crust White®, UPC 71921 98745; production codes are 3062525951, 3062525952 and 3063525951.

   The problem was discovered after the firm received consumer complaints that small fragments of plastic were found in the CPK Crispy Thin Crust White Pizza. The problem was related to the lot of spinach used in the production of three additional varieties of pizza subject to recall. There has been one consumer report of injury thus far (a chipped tooth) associated with consumption of these products.  The fragments are of clear, brittle plastic, in irregular triangles, and may have sharp edges.

   All the pizzas being recalled were produced between February 26 and March 9 of this year and shipped to retail establishments nationwide. 

   Consumers with questions about the recall should contact Nestlé USA Consumer Services at 800-456-4394 or nestlepizza@casupport.com for further instructions.  Hours of operation are Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., E.T. and this Saturday, May 4 from Noon to 8 p.m. E.T.

 

Published in Local News

   SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Illinois farmers still can't begin planting their corn crops due to muddy fields caused by the heavy rains that inundated the state in recent weeks.

   The U.S. Department of Agriculture says that as of Monday there's been no significant planting done in Illinois because many fields are simply too wet for farmers to get out in them in tractors.

   The USDA says just 1 percent of the state's corn crop has been sown. This time last year, three-quarter of the state's cornfields were planted, more than double the five-year average of 36 percent.

   Nationwide among key farming states, 4 percent of the corn crop is in the ground, down from 49 percent a year ago at this time.

 
Published in Local News

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The USDA reports that farmers intend to plant 97.3 million acres of corn this year, the most since 1936.

<br><br>

The spring planting survey released Thursday says the 2013 corn planting forecast is up slightly from last year's 97.2 million acres.

<br><br>

Corn remains profitable, as prices are strong after last year's drought left the grain in short supply.

<br><br>

Record corn acreage is expected in Arizona, Idaho, Minnesota, Nevada, North Dakota, and Oregon.

<br><br>

But some Corn Belt states will continue to be affected by the worst drought since the 1950s, with slightly less planted acreage expected.

<br><br>

The report says farmers plan to plant 77.1 million acres in soybeans, down slightly from 2012's 77.2 million acres but still the fourth-highest soybean planting on record.

Published in Local News

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