Category: Food

October 11th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

Valley Fine Foods, a Forest City, N.C. establishment, is recalling approximately 35,516 pounds of heat-treated, not fully cooked meat and poultry products that may be adulterated due to presence of spoilage organisms that have rendered it unwholesome and unfit for human food, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.

The heat-treated, not fully cooked, refrigerated meat and poultry products were produced on various dates from Aug. 15, 2018 through Oct. 4, 2018. The following products are subject to recall:

• 12-oz. tray packages containing “SIMPLE DISHES™ Chicken Penne Alfredo” with case code #19034, case UPC code 1-07-42753-34709-0, and “BEST IF USED BY” “10/09/18” through “11/25/18”. Unit UPC 7-42753-34709-3.

• 12-oz.  tray packages containing “SIMPLE DISHES™ Chicken Primavera” with case code #19033, case UPC code 1-07-42753-34708-3, and “BEST IF USED BY” “10/09/18” through “11/25/18”. Unit UPC 7-42753-34708-6.

• 12-oz. tray packages containing “SIMPLE DISHES™ Italian Sausage Ziti” with case code #19035, case UPC code 1-07-42753-34711-3, and “BEST IF USED BY” “10/09/18” through “11/25/18”. Unit UPC 7-42753-34711-6.

• 12-oz.  tray packages containing “SIMPLE DISHES™ Rigatoni with Meatballs and a Mushroom Cream Sauce” with case code #19036, case UPC Code of 1-07-42753- 34710-6 and “BEST IF USED BY” “10/09/18” through “11/25/18”.  Unit UPC 7-42753-34710-9.

The products subject to recall bear the establishment number “ P-22102B” or “M-22102B” on the side of the product package. These items were shipped retail locations in California, Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan and North Carolina.

The problem was discovered on Oct. 4, 2018 by the establishment’s research and development department during routine internal testing. FSIS was notified on Oct. 10, 2018.

There have been no confirmed reports of adverse reactions due to consumption of these products. Anyone concerned about an injury or illness should contact a healthcare provider.

FSIS is concerned that some product may be in consumer’s refrigerators or freezers. Consumers who have purchased these products are urged not to consume them. These products should be thrown away or returned to the place of purchase.

FSIS routinely conducts recall effectiveness checks to verify recalling firms notify their customers of the recall and that steps are taken to make certain that the product is no longer available to consumers.

Media and consumers with questions regarding the recall can contact Valley Fine Foods customer service line, at 844-833-6888.

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 888-MPHotline (888-674-6854) is available in English and Spanish and can be reached from 10 a.m. to 6 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.

Posted in Food, Health, New Bern

October 10th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is issuing food safety recommendations for those who may be impacted by Hurricane Michael.

The National Hurricane Center expects storm surge and hurricane force winds in portions of Florida, Georgia and Alabama. Heavy rainfall from Hurricane Michael could produce flash flooding from the Florida Panhandle and Big Bend region into portions of Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina and southeast Virginia.

Hurricanes present the possibility of power outages and flooding that can compromise the safety of stored food. Residents in the path of this storm should pay close attention to the forecast. FSIS recommends that consumers take the following steps to reduce food waste and the risk of foodborne illness during this and other severe weather events.

Steps to follow in advance of losing power:

  • Keep appliance thermometers in both the refrigerator and the freezer to ensure temperatures remain food safe during a power outage. Safe temperatures are 40°F or lower in the refrigerator, 0°F or lower in the freezer.
  • Freeze water in one-quart plastic storage bags or small containers prior to a storm. These containers are small enough to fit around the food in the refrigerator and freezer to help keep food cold. Remember, water expands when it freezes, so don’t overfill the containers.
  • Freeze refrigerated items, such as leftovers, milk and fresh meat and poultry that you may not need immediately—this helps keep them at a safe temperature longer.
  • Know where you can get dry ice or block ice.
  • Have coolers on hand to keep refrigerator food cold if the power will be out for more than four hours.
  • Group foods together in the freezer—this ‘igloo’ effect helps the food stay cold longer.
  • Keep a few days’ worth of ready-to-eat foods that do not require cooking or cooling.

Steps to follow if the power goes out:

  • Keep the refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible. A refrigerator will keep food cold for about four hours if the door is kept closed. A full freezer will hold its temperature for about 48 hours (24 hours if half-full).
  • Place meat and poultry to one side of the freezer or on a tray to prevent cross contamination of thawing juices.
  • Use dry or block ice to keep the refrigerator as cold as possible during an extended power outage. Fifty pounds of dry ice should keep a fully-stocked 18-cubic-feet freezer cold for two days.

Food safety after a flood:

  • Do not eat any food that may have come into contact with flood water—this would include raw fruits and vegetables, cartons of milk or eggs.
  • Discard any food that is not in a waterproof container if there is any chance that it has come into contact with flood water. Food containers that are not waterproof include those packaged in plastic wrap or cardboard, or those with screw‐caps, snap lids, pull tops and crimped caps. Flood waters can enter into any of these containers and contaminate the food inside. Also, discard cardboard juice/milk/baby formula boxes and home-canned foods if they have come in contact with flood water, because they cannot be effectively cleaned and sanitized.
  • Inspect canned foods and discard any food in damaged cans. Can damage is shown by swelling, leakage, punctures, holes, fractures, extensive deep rusting or crushing/denting severe enough to prevent normal stacking or opening with a manual, wheel‐type can opener.

Steps to follow after a weather emergency:

  • Check the temperature inside of your refrigerator and freezer. Discard any perishable food (such as meat, poultry, seafood, eggs or leftovers) that has been above 40°F for two hours or more.
  • Check each item separately. Throw out any food that has an unusual odor, color or texture or feels warm to the touch.
  • Check frozen food for ice crystals. The food in your freezer that partially or completely thawed may be safely refrozen if it still contains ice crystals or is 40°F or below.
  • Never taste a food to decide if it’s safe.
  • When in doubt, throw it out.

FSIS’ YouTube video “Food Safety During Power Outages” has instructions for keeping frozen and refrigerated food safe. The publication “A Consumer’s Guide to Food Safety: Severe Storms and Hurricanes” can be downloaded and printed for reference during a power outage. Infographics on FSIS’ Flickr pageoutline steps you can take before, during and after severe weather, power outages and flooding. FSIS provides relevant food safety information during disasters on Twitter @USDAFoodSafety and Facebook.

If you have questions about food safety during severe weather, or any other food safety topics, call the USDA Meat & Poultry Hotline at 1-888MPHotline or chat live with a food safety specialist at AskKaren.gov. These services are available in English and Spanish from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday. Answers to frequently asked question can also be found 24/7 at AskKaren.gov.

Posted in Food, Hurricane

October 3rd, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

Johnston County Hams, a Smithfield, N.C. establishment, is recalling approximately 89,096 pounds of ready-to-eat ham products that may be adulterated with Listeria monocytogenes, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.

The ready-to-eat deli-loaf ham items were produced from April 3, 2017 to Oct. 2, 2018. The following products are subject to recall:

• Varying weights of 7 to 8-lbs. plastic-wrapped “JOHNSTON COUNTY HAMS, INC. COUNTRY STYLE FULLY COOKED BONELESS DELI HAM.”

• Varying weights of 7 to 8-lbs. plastic-wrapped “Ole Fashioned Sugar Cured The Old Dominion Brand Hams Premium Fully Cooked Country Ham” with Sell-By dates from 4/10/2018 to 9/27/2019.

• Varying weights of 7 to 8-lbs. plastic-wrapped “Padow’s Hams & Deli, Inc. FULLY COOKED COUNTRY HAM BONELESS Glazed with Brown Sugar.”

• Varying weights of 7 to 8-lbs. plastic-wrapped “Premium Fully Cooked Country Ham LESS SALT Distributed By: Valley Country Hams LLC” with Sell-By dates from 4/10/2018 to 9/27/2019.

• Varying weights of 7 to 8-lbs. plastic-wrapped “GOODNIGHT BROTHERS COUNTRY HAM Boneless Fully Cooked.”

The products subject to recall bear establishment number “EST. M2646” inside the USDA mark of inspection. These items were shipped to distributors in Maryland, North Carolina, New York, South Carolina and Virginia.

On Sept. 27, 2018, FSIS was notified that a person ill with listeriosis reported consuming a ham product produced at Johnston County Hams. Working in conjunction with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and state public health and agriculture partners, FSIS determined that there is a link between the Listeria monocytogenes illnesses and ham products produced at Johnston County Hams. The epidemiologic investigation identified a total of four listeriosis confirmed illnesses, including one death, between July 8, 2017 and August 11, 2018. FSIS collected two deli ham product samples from the Johnston County Hams, Inc. facility in 2016 and in early 2018. Whole genome sequencing results showed that Listeria monocytogenes identified in deli ham both years was closely related genetically to Listeria monocytogenes from ill people. FSIS is continuing to work with federal and state public health partners to determine if there are additional illnesses linked to these products and will provide updated information should it become available.

Consumption of food contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes can cause listeriosis, a serious infection that primarily affects older adults, persons with weakened immune systems, and pregnant women and their newborns. Less commonly, persons outside these risk groups are affected.

Listeriosis can cause fever, muscle aches, headache, stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance and convulsions sometimes preceded by diarrhea or other gastrointestinal symptoms. An invasive infection spreads beyond the gastrointestinal tract. In pregnant women, the infection can cause miscarriages, stillbirths, premature delivery or life-threatening infection of the newborn. In addition, serious and sometimes fatal infections in older adults and persons with weakened immune systems. Listeriosis is treated with antibiotics. Persons in the higher-risk categories who experience flu-like symptoms within two months after eating contaminated food should seek medical care and tell the health care provider about eating the contaminated food.

FSIS is concerned that some product may be frozen and in consumers’ freezers. Consumers who have purchased these products are urged not to consume them. These products should be thrown away or returned to the place of purchase.

FSIS routinely conducts recall effectiveness checks to verify recalling firms notify their customers of the recall and that steps are taken to make certain that the product is no longer available to consumers. When available, the retail distribution list(s) will be posted on the FSIS website at www.fsis.usda.gov/recalls.

Consumers with questions regarding the recall can contact Rufus Brown, Johnston County Hams plant manager, at (919) 934-8054. Media with questions regarding the recall can contact Largemouth Communications at (919) 459-6457.

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 888-MPHotline (888-674-6854) is available in English and Spanish and can be reached from 10 a.m. to 6 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.

Posted in Food, State news

July 11th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

The North Carolina Restaurant & Lodging Association, creator and host of the annual NCRLA Chef Showdown presented by Got to be NC Agriculture, announced the 21 chefs selected to compete in its third annual cooking competition.

Among those selected is Antonio Campolio of Persimmons Waterfront Restaurant in New Bern.

The chefs and pastry chefs, all based in North Carolina, advance after cooking up the highest-rated dishes across three regional competitions. The main NCRLA Chef Showdown event takes place on Monday, Aug. 27, at Aria at Founders Hall in the Bank of America Center in Uptown Charlotte, N.C.

Antonio Campolio, NCRLA Chef Showdown 2018 finalist. He is executive chef at Persimmons Waterfront Restaurant in New Bern.

From the Persimmons website: At the age of 12, Chef Campolio began washing dishes at his parents’ restaurant. Beginning at age 18, Chef Campolio worked his way through the world famous Greenbrier Hotel’s Culinary Internship Program, learning valuable skills he still uses daily. After his time at the Greenbrier, Chef Campolio continued his career at 700 Drayton in Savannah, Ga. and later at the Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs, Co. Before coming to Persimmons, Chef Campolio was the Executive Chef at the Marcus Whitman Hotel in Walla Walla, Wa., where he lead the restaurant to numerous national accolades including Restaurant of the Year by the Washington Wine Commission. During his time in Washington, Chef Campolio was invited to cook a meal at the James Beard House (named for the legendary American chef) in New York City, one of the highest honors a chef can receive.

Recently becoming a father, Chef Campolio and his wife, Zeljana, were attracted to New Bern as a great place to raise their son. “We visited and fell in love with the town for our family. Then I went to Persimmons and saw an incredible opportunity to really focus on local, sustainable food year-round. It was a perfect fit.”

In his short time at Persimmons, Chef Campolio has already established relationships with local farmers, ranchers and breweries and says the restaurant will feature bi-seasonal menus to highlight the foods that are fresh and at their peak. He wants Persimmons to be a place for “locals and tourists alike — where they can count on fresh, delicious and local food, whether just getting a beer and appetizer or enjoying lunch or dinner.”

“This year’s slate of contenders includes some of the most innovative and talented chefs in our state. At the showdown, these chefs will use North Carolina ingredients to demonstrate their creativity and shine a light on our incredible hospitality industry. Attendees will get a taste of why North Carolina’s culinary scene is one of the best in the nation,” said NCRLA President and CEO Lynn Minges.

Selected chefs – sorted into two food categories, savory and sweet – are vying for the 2018 “NCRLA Chef of the Year” and “NCRLA Pastry Chef of the Year” awards. Chefs will prepare and serve tasting-sized portions to event attendees. The dishes, judged by five culinary experts, receive scores on presentation, taste, and use of local ingredients from North Carolina.

The 15 savory chefs are:

The six pastry chefs are:

NCRLA will crown a 2018 “NCRLA Mixologist of the Year,” as six North Carolina distilleries partner with hand-picked bartenders to craft cocktails for guests and judges to enjoy. Distillery and mixologist teams will be announced in the coming weeks.

The NCRLA Chef Showdown presented by Got to Be NC Agriculture is on Monday Aug. 27, from 5:30 to 9 p.m. and coincides with the North Carolina Restaurant & Lodging Expo. For additional information or to purchase tickets to the 2018 NCRLA Chef Showdown, visit www.ncrla.org/chefshowdown/.

Posted in Business, Food, New Bern, New Bern business and commerce

May 18th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

Who does it best in New Bern?

Seems like everywhere I’ve lived, there was one local burger joint that grabbed my attention. Sorry to say, in the almost 10 years I’ve lived in New Bern, I’ve not found one that rises above the rest so much so that crave it.

So, dear readers, help me out. Who does burgers the best in New Bern? And for that matter, who does fries the best?

You can suggest chain restaurants, but what I’m really interested in is locally owned restaurants and grills.

Post your favorites in comments or use the contact form below. I’ll compile the results in a poll in a few days.

Thanks for lending a hand.

Posted in Food

May 18th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

Local chefs from New Bern, Antonio Campolio of Persimmons and Troy Tipton of Famous, will join other chefs from Eastern North Carolina to face off in the first of three regional semifinals for a chance to compete in the third annual NCRLA Chef Showdown.

The first round of semifinals will be held Tuesday, May 22, at Lawson’s Landing in New Bern, where the chefs will prepare and serve tasting-size portions to be judged by three culinary experts. The event is not open to the public.

The top 21 highest-rated chefs across the three regional competitions will progress to finals to compete for the titles of “NCRLA Chef of the Year” and “NCRLA Pastry Chef of the Year.”

The savory chefs are:

  • Paul Boswell, Henry’s Restaurant & Bar, Wilmington
  • Sam Cahoon, Savorez, Wilmington
  • Antonio Campolio, Persimmons Waterfront Restaurant, New Bern
  • Nicholas Chavez, Cape Fear Country Club, Wilmington
  • Jamie Davis, Duck’s Grille & Bar, Jacksonville
  • Joseph Heskin, Oceanic, Wrightsville Beach
  • Massimo Mannino, Nino’s Cucina Italiana, Greenville
  • Brandon Shepard, Urban Street Eats, Swansboro

The pastry chefs are:

  • Troy Tipton, Famous Restaurant & Baking Company, New Bern

The judges are:

  • Amy Gaw, Owner of Outer Banks Sea Salt, and journalist, Grandy
  • Bud Taylor, Executive Chef, The Bistro at Topsail, Surf City
  • David Cartier, Owner of Hungry Town Tours, Beaufort, NC and Board Member of Carteret Catch and Beaufort Food & Wine

Due to strong interest, NCRLA introduced three regional semi-final rounds—the first to be held Tuesday, May 22, at Lawson’s Landing in New Bern—prior to the main NCRLA Chef Showdown event on Monday, Aug. 27, at Aria at Founders Hall in the Bank of America Center in Uptown Charlotte.

The two remaining semi-final rounds will take place Monday, June 4, at Highland Avenue in Hickory. and Monday, June 25, at Vidrio in Raleigh.

Regional chef competitors will prepare and serve tasting-sized portions, which will be judged by three culinary experts scoring on presentation, taste and use of local ingredients from North Carolina. The 21 highest-rated chef and pastry chef competitors across the three regional competitions will progress to the finals to compete for the coveted titles of “NCRLA Chef of the Year” and “NCRLA Pastry Chef of the Year.”

Established in 1947, the North Carolina Restaurant & Lodging Association (NCRLA) works to advance and protect North Carolina’s $23.5 billion restaurant, foodservice and lodging industry. The association provides access to the resources and support restaurant and lodging professionals need to lead thriving businesses, while serving as conscientious, contributing members of an unparalleled industry. To learn more information about NCRLA or its membership opportunities and cost-saving benefits, please visit www.ncrla.org.

Posted in Food

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