Clostridium botulinum

Botulism Siouxie

"Butilism" Siouxie Wiles

“Botulism” Siouxie Wiles

Every now and then someone comes out of the woodwork and sprouts off complete nonsense. Siouxie Wiles – or as she will now be known, “Botulism Siouxie” is one such person.

Botulism Siouxie just loves getting into the media. Slight problem though, she talks complete shite. Take the Fonterra botulism issue, where she blabbed non-stop with ghoulish comments that failed completely to put the issue into context – like there was no risk what-so-ever to babies.

Let’s take a look at how Botulism Siouxie loves scaring mums and dads of young children. She starts scaremongering in a blog post dated 4 August, ‘Fonterra scare: the other side of Botox’ saying:

Botulism is caused by the ability of C. botulinum to produce several neurotoxins (types A-G) which prevent acetylcholine from being released from the motor nerve endings causing flaccid paralysis and symptoms of blurred vision, drooping eyelids, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and/or constipation and cramps. In severe cases it leads to paralysis of the breathing muscles and causes respiratory failure. Toxin types A, B, E, and F cause disease in humans while types C and D cause disease in cows, birds, and other animals but not in humans.  Read more »

In a “crisis”, perspective is often the last thing thought of

Yesterday’s Herald actually got something right. John Roughan’s article was spot on when he wrote:

Somehow the precautionary element of the announcement was completely lost in the frenzy that followed. Amid all the reports of fearful parents and foreign trade embargoes I for one had missed the fact that the bacterium they had detected might not be clostridium botulinum.

Good point – the recall was always precautionary. But that didn’t stop officials flipping out.

In a crisis, usually the first question asked is has anyone died. That should be the first question Ministers would want to know. Perhaps this skipped most bureaucrats minds when all and sundry started a global panic.

One example of this was MPI, under Acting DG Scott Gallacher. Whoops. But at least he’s taken responsibility for AgResearch.

Another example was the Ministry of Health. You would have thought someone was bright enough in their comms team to point out that there had been no cases in the world where infant botulism had been linked to infant formula. None, nada, nought, zip, zilch.    Read more »

Notulism

Oh dear a  number of people are going to be doing a massive face-palm over the news that there was never any Botulism in Fonterra’s products, including Bryce Edwards, the Labour and Green parties and Nathan Guy.

The Ministry for Primary Industries said it had received results confirming that the bacteria found in the whey protein concentrate (WPC) manufactured by Fonterra was not the botulism-causing clostridium botulinum, the ministry said.

“The organism is confirmed as Clostridium sporogenes. It is therefore not capable of producing botulism causing toxins,” the ministry said in a statement.

“There are no known food safety issues associated with Clostridium sporogenes, although at elevated levels certain strains may be associated with food spoilage,” it said.  Read more »

This Fonterra issue is going to hurt us all

The Fonterra contamination issue is going to hurt.  Lots.

But don’t worry, before we have even discovered the full extent of the problem, the usual suspects are using it for political advantage.

sigh

 

I’m just waiting for The Green Taliban and the Labour Party to chime in, and the Media to pile in right behind them to somehow link all this to a failure of the GCSB to do its job*.  Or something.

You wait.

Christopher Adams reports

Russia has made one of the most extreme responses to Fonterra’s contamination scare so far, banning all goods made by the New Zealand dairy giant, according to media reports.

Russia was not on the list of affected countries released by Trade Minister Tim Grocer yesterday, which included New Zealand, Australia, China, Vietnam and Thailand.

Russian news agency RIA Novosti reported that the country’s consumer-protection watchdog was recalling Fonterra’s products, including infant formula, and advising consumers in Russia not to buy its products.

This follows China banning all Fonterra milk powder imports.

The only upside I can see here is that it may just distract the media long enough to get it out of its ‘the Government is destroying democracy’ self-pity-fest long enough to switch to a ‘the Government isn’t doing the right thing about this milk powder scare’ beat up.  The spin has been decided.  The evidence will be made to fit.

*) yes, I’m being sarcastic

Public Service Announcement – Nutricia Karicare

1168-1If you’re using Nutricia’s Karicare baby/infant formula in New Zealand, please take note

The products being recalled are:

– Karicare Infant Formula Stage 1 (0–6 months) in NEW ZEALAND ONLY with batch numbers 3169 and 3170 (use by 17 06 2016 and 18 06 2016). The batch number and use by date can be found on the base of the tin.

– Karicare Gold+ Follow On Formula Stage 2 (6–12 months) in NEW ZEALAND ONLY with batch number D3183 (use by 31 12 2014). The batch number and use by date can be found on the base of the tin.

Consumers should not feed products with these batch numbers to infants.

Read more »