eNewsletter, April-May 2018
May 2017 | WCFS & WIFSS Newsletter
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Please have a look at where we've been and upcoming events in food safety and security. We hope you find it informative. Stop by our websites at either or Thank you for your continued support!

University of California, Davis

NARMS Retail Meat Meeting | May 21-22, 2018, Silver Spring, MD
The National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System (NARMS) Retail Meat Meeting was held at the FDA's Center for Veterinary Medicine (CVM) on May 21-22, 2018.  Patrick McDermott, the Director of NARMS, talked about the history and future of NARMS.  A discussion of the role of NARMS included presentations on the FDA and Antimicrobial Drug Approvals (FDA), the CDC and Food Safety (CDC), and the NARMS and FSIS-A History of Successful Collaborations (USDA FSIS). The FDA NARMS team also presented research at FDA including NARMS Reports and Resistome Tracker, Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS) in NARMS, Statistical Analysis of NARMS Data, and Metagenomics. The NARMS has identified WGS as a novel approach to augment the research and surveillance of antimicrobial resistance. Currently health departments in 21 states and Institutions of higher education in four states participate in the NARMS program.Maurice Pitesky and Katie Lee attended the meeting to represent Veterinary Medicine Extension and WIFSS. 

WIFSS became a member of NARMS in 2017 and started surveillance of antimicrobial resistance in retail meat in southern California in January 2018. The plaque shown below was issued to WIFSS as a NARMS member.

Surveillance of antimicrobial resistance in retail food in southern California
Since January 2018, Xunde Li from WIFSS and Veterinary Medicine Extension collaborators have been conducting surveillance of antimicrobial resistance in retail food in southern California with FDA partners. Retail chicken, ground turkey, ground beef and pork chop specimens have been collected monthly from grocery stores in the Greater Los Angeles Area including West Los Angeles, East Los Angeles, Irvine, and Ontario. E. coli, Enterococcus, Salmonella, and Campylobacter isolates from samples are being shipped to CVM monthly. The FDA NARMS team at CVM will test for antimicrobial susceptibility of these bacteria in order to monitor the trends of antimicrobial resistance among foodborne bacteria in retail meat in this populated and demographically diverse area. 
NARMS member plaque issued to WIFSS

Global One Health Research, The Future | April 5, 2018, Wageningen University and Research, Netherlands
Rob Atwill, Director of WIFSS, gave a presentation on the complex population health and food safety issues at the Global One Health Research, The Future international symposium held on the Wageningen University & Research (WUR) campus in the Netherlands, April 3-8. His keynote lecture entitled, “Climate perturbations on the risk of microbial contamination of fresh produce in the western US agricultural system,” was part of a 3-day symposium organized by Wageningen in cooperation with Nanjing Agricultural University (NAU), and UC Davis.  The symposium showcased innovations that can tackle the future needs in global one health research, and improve cooperation between researchers and different stakeholders to make the combined approach work. Bennie Osburn, director for outreach and training at WIFSS, presented an overview on One Health for food safety and animal health.

UC Davis and NAU are forming a consortium that includes UCD, NAU, WUR, and Massey University of New Zealand, which will develop innovative one health programs for agriculture and animal health.

Other participants from Davis included Richard Pereira, Population Health & Reproduction, School of Veterinary Medicine; Jorge Rodrigues, CA&ES Department of Land, Air and Water Resources; Rachel Danielson, PhD graduate student in the soils and biogeochemistry program; Yitong Huang, graduate student Master of Preventive Veterinary Medicine; Kyuyoung Lee, PhD graduate student working in influenza viruses at wild-domestic-human interface; and Tim Carpenter, Professor Emeritus in the EpiCentre at Massey University in New Zealand and the Center for Animal Disease Modeling and Surveillance (CADMS) in the Veterinary School.

Skills Enhancement for PSA Grower Trainers Workshop | May 30-31, 2018, Davis, CA
Trevor Suslow, Director of the UC Postharvest Center, hosted a 2-day workshop for Produce Safety Alliance (PSA) trainers and public agency staff involved in FSMA Produce Safety inspector training and related regulatory activities. On Day 1, Michele Jay-Russell presented FSMA-focused research on pathogen persistence in manures and compost as part of an interactive session on practical soil management and soil amendments. On Day 2,  Linda Harris (bottom right) and Jay-Russell presented Training How-To's: Assessing risk in relation to farming practices (Harris) and Assessing risk and management options for wildlife intrusion (Jay-Russell). Harris also gave a demonstration session on understanding water quality parameters using the Auto-calculator, a Surface Water MWQP Excel Tool developed at WCFS.

Over 50 trainers and inspectors from 20 states participated in the workshop. Other speakers included Connie Landis Fisk and Gretchen Wall from PSA,  Barbara Hanson from the Alaska Office of the State Veterinarian, and Stelios Viazis from the FDA CFSAN Produce Safety Network, Western Region. The Produce Safety Network Directory for the four regions shown on the map (top right) can be found here.

UC Davis World Food Center Food for Thought Showcase | May 7, 2018, Davis, CA

Michele Jay-Russell gave a pitch for WIFSS at the first of two Food for Thought Showcases held in the Robert and Margrit Mondavi Center.  The event, organized by the World Food Center, featured a series of elevator pitches from UC Davis programs, institutes, and centers that work in all aspects of the food system. A networking reception and showcase followed the pitch session.

Lunch Time Challenge Video Conference | April 24, 2018
WIFSS staff participated in a video conference call with undergraduate students from Nanjing Agricultural University as the students reported on the Lunch Time Challenge. The April 24 conference call allowed the 27 students to spotlight their presentations on the work they’d completed over a period of 16 lunchtimes, amounting to more than 24 hours, in which they developed well-planned strategies for collecting relevant information through surveys, seeking solutions to identified problems, and defining a means of informing the public of the issues.  Students from the teams FELPAB, Return of the King, Shield, and Davis Warriors competed in the Lunch Time Challenge upon their return from the NAU-UC Davis Education Conference on One Health for Food Safety and Security, held at UC Davis, January through February 9, 2018. During the 3-week conference four teams identified problems they wanted to address which they feel are impacting people, animals, and the environment.
FEL PAB, which stands for food, ecology, life science, plant, animal, and biology, identified pesticide residues on fruit peel; Shield focused on medical care service and medical waste on campus. Return of the King held a “war on plastics” and raised public attention to plastic waste and formulated a strategy which encourages a habit of garbage classification and recycling. The Davis Warriors conducted a series of experiments to test words from the internet that is about food safety.  Their theme was “Food safety worth concerning.” 
Swedish Delegation | April 20, 2018, Davis, CA
WIFSS hosted a meeting for U.S. and Swedish representatives from academia, government agencies, and industry to develop educational materials for training the agricultural sector on food and water safety, and to discuss means for upgrading civil defense systems. The visit included a discussion on dairy farm security and a field trip to a cattle ranch. The Swedish representatives have been working with WIFSS to develop strategies to enhance and harden the target of their food and agricultural systems.

Heather Johnson, David Goldenberg, Mike Payne, and Bennie Osburn, from WIFSS greeted participants from institutions including: the FBI, California Office of Emergency Services, National Veterinary Institute, Uppsala, Sweden, the Swedish Board of Agriculture, the Swedish Defense Research Agency, and the FBI’s InfraGard.
University of Washington One Health Course | April 19, 2018, Seattle, WA
Michele Jay-Russell was a guest lecturer in a graduate/undergraduate course offered by the Center for One Health Research in the School of Public Health.  The course is led by Marguerite Pappaioanou and includes case-based approaches using historical outbreaks and public health scenarios. Jay-Russell’s Case Study with the class focused on an E. coli O157:H7 outbreak traced to bagged baby spinach. 

RPDC West Virginia Class | April 17, 2018, Sutton, WV
The Rural Domestic Preparedness Consortium (RDPC) Management 448 class was delivered to an audience that included representatives from all levels of local, state and federal government agencies, with an emphasis on roles & responsibilities of the West Virginia Rapid Response Team.  The course was taught by Tracey Stevens, an Instructor and Trainer with WIFSS
The West Virginia Department of Agriculture, Deputy Commissioner, Joe Hatton actively participated in the training with positive regards to the future of West Virginia Agriculture and the statewide stakeholders. A planning meeting was held at the State Department of Agriculture in Guthrie, WV, the following day with LPOC (Local Point of Contact) Judith Ashcraft, Deputy Commissioner Roy Mc Callister, Hatton and Instructor Tracey Stevens. A request for a Regional Training Conference for the states of West Virginia, D.C., Kentucky, Virginia, and New Jersey, has been planned for October of 2018, in which both the RDPC AWR 328 and MGT 448 courses will be delivered.
The management level course MGT 448 provides emergency planners, community leaders, veterinarians, animal control personnel, government and non-government agencies and public health agencies with the background information needed to participate in the development of disaster response plans that could be included within the existing operational area.
MGT 448 is sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), RDPC, and WIFSS. DHS gives certificates to those completing the course which can be used as proof of training to become part of a disaster team responding to disasters.


USDA Grant Award to Support Food Safety and Honey Bee Health
WIFSS, UC Cooperative Extension office in the Department of Entomology and Nematology, and UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, are partnering with Oregon State University in a USDA funded multi-state Specialty Crop project to develop CE training for veterinarians on bee health and antibiotic use—a practice that is now regulated under the veterinary feed directive (VFD). The project will offer a comprehensive bee biology online course and train-the-trainer practical training for veterinarians and apiculture educators. The ultimate goals are to protect the specialty crop, honey, from becoming contaminated with antibiotic residues; to protect the health and safety of bees, which are essential to California agriculture; and, finally, to support veterinary oversight in the use of antibiotics, which will lead to an overall reduction of antibiotic resistant bacteria in the environment. 
Honey bees play a dual role in the production of specialty crops.  They produce honey, and they are managed as a primary pollinator for a majority of high value specialty crops grown in the contiguous states of California and Oregon, such as nuts, stone fruits, vegetables, and berries. The $483,278 award will address the unique needs of the beekeeping industry that have been experiencing high colony losses since 2006. It will also focus new rules established by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration on the use of antibiotics which are used to control certain diseases affecting bee colonies.
Read about it Here.


Produce Safety Alliance Soil Summit Resources

Powerpoints from the Southeastern (see our January 2018 newsletter) and South Central Soil Summits are now available and can be found here.

Visit Us at the Annual IAFP Meeting | July 8-11, 2018, Salt Lake City, UT
Several of our faculty and staff will be participating at the upcoming 2018 International Association of Food Protection (IAFP) Annual Meeting. Stop by to see presentations of these collaborative research and outreach programs. Check out the Annual Meeting App or IAFP website for the complete program. 

Click on the Titles below to preview a few of the sessions and abstracts:

Round Tables and Symposia

Food Safety Recalls in the Age of Online Grocery Stores (
Monday, July 09, 2018: 01:30 PM - 03:00 PM)

Pathogens in Soil: a Focus on Salmonella and STEC Survival in Biological Soil Amendments of Animal Origin (Tuesday, July 10, 2018; 08:30 AM - 10:00 AM)

Shiga Toxin Producing Escherichia coli and Leafy Greens: Is it Déjà vu All Over Again? (Wednesday, July 11, 2018; 10:30 AM - 12:00 PM)
Oral Presentations and Posters
Monday, July 9 Tuesday, July 10 Wednesday, July 11
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