Annual Meeting 2018

Colorado Association for Food Protection: Inaugural Annual Meeting 2018

The Colorado Association for Food Protection held its first annual meeting on Tuesday, October 30, 2018 at Eurofins Microbiology Laboratory in Lafayette, CO with 30 people in attendance. Participants enjoyed coffee and pastries before being welcomed by the current President, Juliany Rivera Calo who went on to introduce the other members of the executive board, Laurel Burke, Vice President, and Megan Kelly, Secretary. The outline and topics for the day were briefly discussed before introducing the speakers for the day, Dr. Rachel Sinley, Rachel Jervis and Dr. Doug Marshall.

The first speaker, Dr. Rachel Sinley (PhD, MPH, RD, Asst. Professor Metropolitan State University) spoke on the topic of “Developing Culturally Relevant Food Safety Education Programs Using the Conceptual Change Method”. She spoke of the application of this method, how it relates to creating a successful education program and the steps involved. She then went on to discuss the Informational-Motivational-Behavioral Skills Model which relates to behaviors that damage or improve health status. A group discussion took place with regards to, what makes a food safety program successful as well as what part culture plays in food safety programming. As an example, a formative research project involving Native American food preparers was conducted following the teaching of the “FightBAC!” program (Partnership for Food Safety Education: Supporting consumers to prevent food poisoning). This included the distribution of food safety kits in order to promote safe food preparation. The general findings of this study showed the usefulness of the conceptual change method in food safety education. One example is that the method allowed for unanticipated but important food safety topics to be brought up in discussion and addressed (i.e. not using bleach for food sanitation).

The second speaker, Rachel Jervis (MPH, Enteric Disease Unit Manager, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment // Co-Director, Colorado Integrated Food Safety Center of Excellence) discussed “Enteric Disease in Colorado: Systems, Surveillance, Outbreaks and Collaboration with Industry.” Rachel provided an informative overview to the public health systems used by the state of Colorado and how Colorado compares to other states. Colorado currently has a reporting system known as CEDRS (Colorado Electronic Disease Reporting System). It consists of the compilation of demographics, food history and lab data (clinical, hospital etc.). There are currently 11 counties that do not have direct health officials appointed to them. When illnesses are reported there are several background questions that need to be considered such as: recent travel, any illness, and any treatments received. It was emphasized that when illnesses get reported, high level interviews are extremely important. Unfortunately, though, not all cases get reported. For example, many people decline to go to the doctor when they are ill thinking that it will “clear up.” Topics of discussion concluding the presentation included: use of social media in foodborne illness reporting, traceability for home food deliveries, steps in foodborne disease tracking and public health collaboration during outbreaks.

The third, and final speaker, Dr. Doug Marshall (PhD, Chief Scientific Officer, Eurofins Microbiology) introduced the topic of “Risky Ingredients.” He began with a discussion regarding why FDA updated food safety law with FSMA. It was determined that there was lack of understanding of hazards and lack of training of employees that fueled implementation. It was also determined that 60% of all problems in the food industry stem from ingredient suppliers. Foreseeing issues is a key component to prevent this as well as implementation of preventative controls. There needs to be a clear definition of risk and identification of perceived risk vs. actual risk. Another issue to consider is accidental/incidental contamination vs. intentional contamination (i.e. economically motivated fraud). There were also several sub-topics discussed by Dr. Marshall including: “Anti-Everything” campaigns (i.e. GMO’s, All Natural, Organic, Carbs, Gluten, Sugar, etc.), Questions in the Risk Assessment & FDA Risk Assessment Activities (including microbial, USDA), Ready-To-Eat foods, California Prop 65, OPSON V – Top Problem Product, and Allergens. The presentation ended with a discussion regarding a recent recall and its repercussions. The overall takeaway was to understand the supply chain, how to monitor, how to control and how to qualify.

All attendees were encouraged to ask questions after each presentation and there were some excellent, engaging discussions between the presenters and attendees. Afterward, several members of the group toured the Eurofins facility.

A business meeting was held at the end of the day. Members exchanged ideas on how to promote the Affiliate and how to bring in more members to include students, academia, industry and regulatory professionals. At the end of this meeting the new leadership was introduced to the team, welcoming Laurel Burke as President, Megan Kelly as Vice President, Jeffrey Nauseda as Secretary, Angela Tuxhorn as Treasurer and Juliany Rivera Calo as IAFP Delegate.


Visit IAFP Affiliate View - Winter 2019 to find this summary of our annual meeting and other information related to IAFP and Affiliates.