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Ready-to-Bake Cookie Dough not Ready-to-Eat, Study of E. coli Outbreak Finds

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OKIsItJustMe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-11 12:33 PM
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Ready-to-Bake Cookie Dough not Ready-to-Eat, Study of E. coli Outbreak Finds /

Ready-to-Bake Cookie Dough not Ready-to-Eat, Study of E. coli Outbreak Finds


Consumer education and manufacturing changes may help prevent illness

The investigation of a 2009 multistate outbreak of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC), an important cause of bacterial gastrointestinal illness, led to a new culprit: ready-to-bake commercial prepackaged cookie dough. Published in Clinical Infectious Diseases and available online a new report describing the outbreak offers recommendations for prevention, including a stronger message for consumers: Dont eat prepackaged cookie dough before its baked.

The reports authors, led by Karen Neil, MD, MSPH, and colleagues at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and at state health departments, reached two key conclusions: 1) manufacturers of cookie dough should consider reformulating their product to make it as safe as a ready-to-eat product and 2) more effective consumer education about the risks of consuming unbaked goods is needed. During the 2009 outbreak, 77 patients with illnesses were identified in 30 states, and 35 people were hospitalized.

Previous E. coli-related food-borne illnesses have been associated with ground beef, leafy green vegetables, sprouts, melons, salami, and unpasteurized apple cider. The 2009 investigation, which involved extensive traceback, laboratory, and environmental analysis, led to a recall of 3.6 million packages of the cookie dough. However, no single source, vehicle, or production process associated with the dough could be identified for certain to have contributed to the contamination.

Dr. Neil and colleagues suspected that one of the ingredients used to produce the dough was contaminated. Their investigation didnt conclusively implicate flour, but it remains the prime suspect. They pointed out that a single purchase of contaminated flour might have been used to manufacture multiple lots and varieties of dough over a period of time as suggested by the use-by dates on the contaminated product.

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BadgerKid Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-11 01:08 PM
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1. Why no alarm about cookie dough ice cream, I wonder?
Edited on Fri Dec-09-11 01:09 PM by BadgerKid
Maybe it is pasteurized beforehand?
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SheilaT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-11 01:45 AM
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2. I occasionally bring home made treats
to work to share with my fellow employees. Cakes or cookies or brownies or apple cake or various other things like that. I love to bake, and I live alone, and I'm appreciative that they will help consume the things I enjoy making. It's clear to me that very few people have had truly home-made goodies, made completely from scratch by they way they respond. I don't use mixes of any kind, just sugar, flour, eggs, vanilla, whatever else the recipe calls for.

Because I've consistently baked from scratch most of my life (ask me about the time I'd volunteered to make Valentine's Day treats for my older son's class when he was in grade school and they told me I had to make cupcakes from cherry-flavored mix and how appalled I was at that) and I can tell you that things made from the mixes have a distinct chemical flavor that is quite unpleasant, Unfortunately, a lot of people are used to that flavor, and when they have the real thing they cannot believe how good it is.

When my mother turned 80, I baked a couple of cakes for the party we had for her. If you were there, you had the choice of chocolate cake with white frosting, or chocolate cake with chocolate frosting. The recipe is the one on the back of the Hershey's cocoa box. I can assure you that every single person who took a slice of cake ate the entire thing. That doesn't happen with cake made from a commercial mix and frosted with the ghastly canned frosting. Oh, and it takes maybe five minutes longer to make from scratch than to use a mix.
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