WCFS - Western Center for Food Safety

eNewsletter, November 2016




Latin Food 2016 

November 9-11, 2016
Cancun, Mexico

Latin Food 2016Linda Harris attended the International Association for Food Protection’s 5th Latin America Symposium on Food Safety and 7th Food Science, Biotechnology and Safety meeting, where she gave a closing lecture on the topic Global Trends in Food Safety. The Mexican Association for Food Protection and the Mexican Association for Food Science jointly organized this meeting, which included over 700 oral and poster presentations and nearly 1000 attendees. The program is available here. The book of abstracts may be downloaded from the website.




Food Safety and Sanitation Workshop 

November 8-9, 2016
Portland, OR

Melissa in PortlandMelissa Partyka and Ronald Bond attended the 36th Annual Food Safety and Sanitation Workshop, organized by Washington State University Extension.  Melissa Partyka gave two advanced workshops on water sampling titled, Agricultural Water Quality Testing Under FSMA: Getting there from here. The annual workshop addresses basic sanitation as well as cutting edge issues related to food sanitation and food safety. The audience was made up of a diversity of professionals from regulatory, academic, and produce production backgrounds.






Agroterrorism and Food Systems Disaster Training Courses

November 15-16, 2016
Mather, CA

First Responders MeetingFirst responders from across the state of California from San Diego to Sutter counties attended two days of training outlining the potential effects of an agricultural emergency and the important structure for organizing the recovery from an incident of agroterrorism or food systems disaster.

David Goldenberg, a food safety and security training coordinator with the Western Institute for Food Safety and Security (WIFSS) taught the courses held at the California Office of Emergency Services. Goldenberg’s training included active discussions and table top exercises for the Department of Homeland Security courses AWR 154, Principles of National Incident Management Systems (NIMS); AWR 155, Principles of Frontline Response to Agroterrorism and Food System Disasters; and AWR 156, Principles of Planning and Implementing Recovery.

A maximum turnout of 40 participants marked the final delivery of these three courses. The courses are being phased out to make room for two new courses instructing first responders on preparation and planning for successful disaster response teams. AWR 328, All Hazards Preparedness for Animals in Disasters, and MGT 448, All Hazards Planning for Animal, Agricultural, and Food Related Disasters, will discuss unique issues to be considered and addressed when animals are involved in an emergency, such as safe animal handling, animal evacuation, and animal sheltering. 














Third Annual UC Davis One Health Symposium

November 5, 2016
UC Davis

Climate Change and Our Food Supply

WIFSS’ Bennie Osburn was a panel member at the third annual One Health symposium on “Collaboration in the Face of a Changing Environment,” held on the UC Davis campus on November 5. Osburn’s presentation on climate change and our food supply emphasized the need for taking a One Health approach to finding solutions to the changing climate and its impact on food safety and security. He described three problems of changing weather, rising temperatures, and increased disasters, and the corresponding actions WIFSS is taking to address these problems. WIFSS is raising awareness internationally by educating students and faculty from universities and vocational colleges. It holds preparedness training to help businesses to continue to operate during crises, and it conducts training for agricultural communities on preparing for, responding to, and recovering from emergencies. 














Food and Agricultural Law

November 14, 2016
UC Davis

Climate Change and Our Food Supply

Bennie Osburn was the guest speaker on November 11th in the University of California Davis School of Law fall semester course on Food and Agricultural Law. The course covers the legal and policy framework of laws and regulations of the USDA, FDA and other federal agencies that regulate food and agricultural production and consumer protections. Osburn touched on several food safety topics regarding the produce production system. He also reviewed the history and purpose behind California Senate Bill No. 27 regarding the use of antimicrobial drugs in food animals and the bill’s impact on the California livestock industry and veterinarians. The bill takes effect in January of 2018.














Dairy Video Series

November 7-9, 2016
Riverdale, CA


It was another successful collaboration between UC Davis, WIFSS, and DeLaval International as Emily Kunz, Cesar Cervantes, and Heather Johnson from WIFSS, and Daniela Bruno and Mario Lopez of DeLaval worked together on another installment of the “Do You Know” video series. This time they were on location at select dairies in the Riverdale community of Fresno County. The early November weather was just right for the video shoot highlighting how to control digital dermatitis on the hoof. View past “Do You Know” videos under the Dairy section on the WIFSS Training and Educational Materials webpage.















Produce Safety Alliance Train the Trainer Course

November 17-18, 2016
Salinas, CA

Food Safety

Linda Harris, Erin DiCaprio (Food Science and Technology Dept.), and Alda Pires attended the Produce Safety Alliance (PSA) course that prepares participants to deliver curriculum modules as trainers in a PSA Grower Training course. The course provides information about Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs), co-management of natural resources and food safety, FSMA Produce Safety Rule requirements, and a review of the seven module PSA Grower Training curriculum. Betsy Bihn, PSA Director along with the Southwest and Northwest PSA Regional Extension Associates Donna Pahl, and Barb Fick, respectively, joined Trevor Suslow to teach the course. More information about this course may be found here.

















Partyka, M.L., R.F. Bond, J.A. Chase and E.R. Atwill. 2017. Monitoring bacterial indicators of water quality in a tidally influenced delta: A Sisyphean pursuit. Science of The Total Environment. In press doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2016.10.179

The Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Estuary (Delta) is the confluence of two major watersheds draining the Western Sierra Nevada mountains into the Central Valley of California, ultimately terminating into San Francisco Bay. We sampled 88 sites once a month for two years (2006–2008) over 87 separate sampling events for a total of 1740 samples. Water samples were analyzed for fecal indicator bacteria (Escherichia coli, enterococci and fecal coliforms), and 53 other physiochemical, land use, and environmental characteristics. The purpose of the study was to create a baseline of microbial water quality in the Delta and to identify various factors (climatic, land use, tidal, etc.) that were associated with elevated concentrations of indicator bacteria. Fecal indicator bacteria generally had weak to modest relationships to environmental conditions; the strength and direction of which varied for each microbial indicator, drainage region, and across seasons. Measured and unmeasured, site-specific effects accounted for large portions of variance in model predictions (ρ = 0.086 to 0.255), indicating that spatial autocorrelation was a major component of water quality outcomes. The effects of tidal cycling and lack of connectivity between waterways and surrounding landscapes likely contributed to the lack of association between local land uses and microbial outcomes, though weak associations may also be indicative of mismatched spatiotemporal scales. The complex nature of this system necessitates continued monitoring and regular updates to statistical models designed to predict microbial water quality.