Another food recall-- is our food supply safe?

BERKELEY, Calif. (KGO) -- The expanding ground beef recall comes on the heels of a massive Romaine lettuce recall. It's enough to make consumers heads spin. What are the implications for our food supply? Are we seeing more outbreaks or are we just better at detecting them?

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It's a question ABC7 News posed to Patrick Baur at UC Berkeley's Food Institute. He's an expert in managing the ways in which we can prevent foodborne human pathogens from getting into the food supply.

Baur said, "We have an extremely complex food system. It comes from all over the country and all over the world and goes through all kinds of distribution channels. Our testing methodology has gotten better over the years but it means it's difficult to compare what we knew 10 years ago to what we know today. "

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So as we get better at detecting foodborne illnesses are we going to see more recalls? Bauer said, "Yes the response from CDC, the FDA and public health agencies is to get the word out. That's the way to prevent people from getting sick."

Going forward, the wild cards are emerging new pathogens, climate change, the global food supply and our changing food preferences. The recalls are a sign the system is working as intended.

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Berkeley resident Pete DuBois says he's found an antidote to the recent recalls. He said " I don't eat meat and I tried to grow my own vegetables as much as possible. "
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