The Current Sweeping Outbreak
Several news outlets are reporting that there has been a recent E. coli breakout across North America infecting romaine lettuce. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) said that all romaine anywhere should be avoided, and consumers should throw out any romaine they might have already bought.
The dvisory, issued by the CDC on Tuesday caught many by surprise. The CDC said it was acting out of
‘an abundance of caution after 32 people in 11 states fell sick with a virulent form of E. coli’
According to the New York Times, this strain of ecoli especially dangerous as the toxins it gives off can damage the kidneys. In the current outbreak, half of those infected have been hospitalized, a rate that is much higher than in other E. coli outbreaks, said Matthew Wise, the CDC’s deputy branch chief for outbreak response.
Unfortunately, This Is Still Common
Thanks to the food logistics system still being a mess, incidents like this that are from October 8th, which as of today’s announcement is roughly 6 weeks later are difficult to stop quickly.
In 2011, the CDC reported that 48 million illnesses, 128,000 hospitalizations and 3,000 deaths occur every year in the U.S. as a direct result of foodborne organisms.
Contamination risks exist at every point in the supply chain from production to transportation, to processing, to storage, manufacturing, and distribution. Because of the staggering complexity of our modern food supply, it is virtually impossible to police each and every risk point.
The FDA considers food to be chemically contaminated when it contains chemicals that may make it harmful to the health of the consumer. There are many chemicals that could potentially cause contamination of the food supply chain.
The FDA conducts monitoring programs for seven chemicals and chemical classes commonly found in food supplies: Acrylamide, Dioxins and PCBs, Ethyl Carbamate, Furan, Melamine, Perchlorate and Radionuclides. Many of these contaminations result from accidental food contact.
The answer to this logistical nightmare is a system that could identify this outbreak swiftly and trace it back its original source. Not only is this type of E.coli outbreak terrible for the people infected, it adds stress to millions of peoples lives as something like romaine lettuce is something consumed quite frequently.
Trackloop’s software would be able to detect where on the supply chain the outbreak occurred, and widespread panic across the continent could be spared as well as lives saved and hospital visits greatly diminished.
The company Trackloop (TOOL) has this system in place, it has also landed huge clients like Walmart, Save-On-Foods, The Canadian Blood Services, SPUD.CA and BC Ferries to name a few as companies are becoming more aware of these logistical messes.
Disclaimer: Trackloop is a paid client of High Energy Trading, click here to read full disclosure.
High Energy Trading is not a licensed broker-dealer, market maker, investment advisor, or underwriter. All information that we provide is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as an offer or solicitation of an offer to buy or sell securities.