Monday, December 31, 2007

D.B. COOPER REDUX (From the FBI)

Toxic Note: The story of D.B. Cooper is one that caught the attention of the nation way back when. There have been books, websites, and even songs about the infamous Cooper. It's an unsolved mystery from 1971 that gets harder and harder to solve as years go by. Chances are someday someone will come across some bones in the wilderness and they'll identify them as Cooper. Although even that scenario is a stretch. If he died in the wilderness the animals would have scavenged his bones. They'd be scattered and virtually impossible to find. Here's the new story from the FBI, plus some links to read more if you're so inclined (one is a 2007 story in NY Magazine saying the mystery may have been solved... the FBI must not agree as the following story was just released today):

D.B. COOPER REDUX
On a cold November night 36 years ago, in the driving wind and rain, somewhere between southern Washington state and just north of Portland, Oregon, a man calling himself Dan Cooper parachuted out of a plane he’d just hijacked clutching a bag filled with $200,000 in stolen cash.
Who was Cooper? Did he survive the jump? And what happened to the loot, only a small part of which has ever surfaced?

It’s a mystery, frankly. We’ve run down thousands of leads and considered all sorts of scenarios. And amateur sleuths have put forward plenty of their own theories. Yet the case remains unsolved.

Would we still like to get our man? Absolutely. And we have reignited the case—thanks to a Seattle case agent named Larry Carr and new technologies like DNA testing.
You can help. We’re providing here, for the first time, a series of pictures and information on the case. Please look it all over carefully to see if it triggers a memory or if you can provide any useful information.

A few things to keep in mind, according to Special Agent Carr:

Cooper was no expert skydiver. “We originally thought Cooper was an experienced jumper, perhaps even a paratrooper,” says Special Agent Carr. “We concluded after a few years this was simply not true. No experienced parachutist would have jumped in the pitch-black night, in the rain, with a 200-mile-an-hour wind in his face, wearing loafers and a trench coat. It was simply too risky. He also missed that his reserve chute was only for training and had been sewn shut—something a skilled skydiver would have checked.”

The hijacker had no help on the ground, either. To have utilized an accomplice, Cooper would’ve needed to coordinate closely with the flight crew so he could jump at just the right moment and hit the right drop zone. But Cooper simply said, "Fly to Mexico," and he had no idea where he was when he jumped. There was also no visibility of the ground due to cloud cover at 5,000 feet.
We have a solid physical description of Cooper. “The two flight attendants who spent the most time with him on the plane were interviewed separately the same night in separate cities and gave nearly identical descriptions,” says Carr. “They both said he was about 5'10" to 6', 170 to 180 pounds, in his mid-40s, with brown eyes. People on the ground who came into contact with him also gave very similar descriptions.”

And what of some of the names pegged as Cooper? None have panned out. Duane Weber, who claimed to be Cooper on his deathbed, was ruled out by DNA testing (we lifted a DNA sample from Cooper’s tie in 2001). Kenneth Christiansen, named in a recent magazine article, didn’t match the physical description and was a skilled paratrooper. Richard McCoy, who died in 1974, also didn’t match the description and was at home the day after the hijacking having Thanksgiving dinner with his family in Utah, an unlikely scenario unless he had help.

As many agents before him, Carr thinks it highly unlikely that Cooper survived the jump. “Diving into the wilderness without a plan, without the right equipment, in such terrible conditions, he probably never even got his chute open.”

Still, we’d all like to know for sure, and Carr thinks you can help.

“Maybe a hydrologist can use the latest technology to trace the $5,800 in ransom money found in 1980 to where Cooper landed upstream. Or maybe someone just remembers that odd uncle.”

If you have any information: please e-mail our Seattle field office at fbise@leo.gov.

If you'd like to see pictures go to the original story on the FBI site: http://www.fbi.gov/page2/dec07/dbcooper123107.html

More background: http://www.fbi.gov/page2/nov06/cooper112406.htm

FBI Archives: http://foia.fbi.gov/foiaindex/dbcooper.htm

Crime Library: http://www.crimelibrary.com/criminal_mind/scams/DB_Cooper/index.html

Here's a story where they say the case MAY be solved, published October 22, 2007: http://nymag.com/news/features/39593/

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Calif. man tries to out-trash me... fails...

I can honestly admit that we don't own enough house or property to hold all the trash I generate in a year.

I remember hearing a story from someone, I think it was my sister and husband, about some visitors from another country that they had staying at their house. My sis and family would put stuff in the trash, the visitor would pull all or some of it out. In their country the things my sister tossed would have been valued and re-used in some form or fashion.

In this country, the things they pulled out of the trash wouldn't have been accepted by a large majority of our poorest.

We are a spoiled nation and I'm right up there at the top of the spoiled heap.

When I feel like I'm losing control, like life is pushing me in directions I don't care to go, I clean. I fill up trash bags. I toss things. It makes me feel like I'm doing something, like I have at least a little control. I don't go wacko about it, but I do like the feeling I get when I fill up a bag of trash. The more bags, the better.

Yes, I know it might be strange. I'm sure there's some psycho-babble term someone has coined for the sense of satisfaction a person might get from cleaning, organizing and tossing.

I know we in America generate a lot of trash. A lot of the stuff we consider trash isn't anything more than stuff we've grown tired of having. We're too lazy to take it to the local Salvation Army.

By the way, that reminds me... I almost said take it to the Goodwill store. I thought Goodwill was a charity, a thrift store with money going to the needy. Not so. It's a for-profit store! I was surprised when I read that little tidbit!

OK, back to trash....

I haven't finished reading the article about the guy who saved his trash for a year but I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that I could out-trash him. That's not necessarily something to brag about, but it's true.

We need to be better at recycling. We need to be better about buying what we need and not buying something that will just end up being tossed 'cause we're tired of it. We need to be a lot of things we're not.

As with all things, there isn't a simple solution. We've all read stories of the rip-offs in recycling. There has to be a market and it has to be cost effective.

If we stop buying frivolous things, if we stop filling up trash cans, how will that affect industry? Jobs?

I'm sure if I thought more I could come up with other areas that would be detrimentally affected if we changed out buying habits to decrease the amount of trash we generate.

Oh man, just glanced down and noticed my office trash needs to go out... see ya... here's the article:

Calif. man saves year's-worth of trash
BERKELEY, Calif. - Ari Derfel leads a trashy life. He just wants to remind everyone else that they do, too. The 35-year-old Berkeley caterer said he has saved every piece of trash he has generated over the past year to see how much garbage one person creates...

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20071231/ap_on_fe_st/odd_trash_man

Violent Border Smugglers Scare U.S. Scientists

Reading a title about violent border smugglers, the first thing I'd think was there were problems in any part of the world but the United States. But no, this article is about our southern border with Mexico. It's hard to imagine trucks full of gun-toting smugglers coming easily across our borders. Reading the article below brought home the seriousness of the problem in ways that none of the other articles I've read have done thus far.

We have a huge problem. Our politicians seem to be making token attempts to placate those who raise a fuss about illegal aliens, drug smuggling and the potential for terrorists to walk across our border. The louder the up swell of our discontent the more token bandaids they plaster. The problem is we don't need bandaids, we need serious surgery along with heavy antibiotics.

I understand it's another one of those huge, complicated problems that could have been solved easily years back. Now it's grown to be such a monster that any solution is going to hurt someone somewhere. Somehow we've got to figure out a way for the business faction, the various political factions and any other factions involved to see the big picture.

Violent Border Smugglers Scare U.S. Scientists
Fox News / PHOENIX — Biologist Karen Krebbs used to study bats in Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument on the Arizona-Mexico border. Then, she got tired of dodging drug smugglers all night.

"I use night-vision goggles, and you could see them very clearly" — caravans of men with guns and huge backpacks full of drugs, trudging through the desert, Krebbs said. After her 10th or 11th time hiding in bushes and behind rocks, she abandoned her research.

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,319028,00.html

Saturday, December 29, 2007

FDA Warns Consumers Not to Eat Raw Oysters Harvested from the West Karako Bay Section of Growing Area 3 in Louisiana

Toxic Note: This is not a warning I'll have to heed as never in a bazillion years would you catch me letting one of these slimy buggers slither down my throat. If I were stranded on a desert island and that was it, I'd wait a few days to see if a fish wouldn't flop up onto the beach. I understand that there are those who love these critter, raw, stewed, fried or however else they might come. So to those who will be heading out to their favorite haunt to slurp a few, read on:

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is warning consumers not to eat raw oysters harvested from West Karako Bay, a section of Growing Area 3 in Louisiana. These oysters, harvested from Dec. 3 through Dec. 21, may be contaminated with norovirus.

Symptoms of norovirus infection include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and stomach cramping. Affected individuals often experience low-grade fever, chills, headache, muscle aches, and a general sense of tiredness. Most people show symptoms within 48 hours of exposure to the virus, with the illness lasting one to two days. However, the illness can become serious for the very young, the elderly and people with weakened immune systems.

Consumers who ate raw oysters on or after Dec. 3 and experienced these symptoms are encouraged to contact their health care providers and local health departments. Consumers concerned about the origin of oysters they have recently purchased should contact the place of purchase to determine if the oysters were harvested from the identified area during the Dec. 3-21 period.

FDA has received reports of norovirus infection in seven individuals who ate raw oysters on Dec. 13 at a restaurant in Chattanooga, Tenn. The Tennessee Department of Health's test results from two of the ill patients were positive for norovirus. FDA confirmed the presence of norovirus in shell oysters harvested from the West Karako Bay section of Growing Area 3 and were served at the restaurant. Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals closed the affected growing area on Dec. 21. FDA is working with the states involved to determine if any additional actions may be necessary to ensure public health protection.

The original shipper of the oysters is Prestige Oyster Company of Theriot, La. The company shipped the oysters to Bon Secour Fisheries in Bon Secour, Ala. Bon Secour Fisheries, in turn, shipped the oysters to the restaurant in Chattanooga. Considering the shelf-life of the product, it is possible that suspect oysters from the designated area are still available in other retail and food service settings.

Persons with weakened immune systems, including those affected by AIDS, and persons with chronic alcohol abuse, liver, stomach or blood disorders, cancer, diabetes or kidney disease should avoid raw oyster consumption altogether, regardless of where the oysters are harvested.
Cooking destroys the virus, eliminating the risk of illness for both healthy and immunocompromised individuals. FDA advises that it's always best to cook seafood thoroughly to minimize the risk of foodborne illness. Consumers can continue to enjoy oysters in many cooked preparations by following this advice:

At Restaurants and other Foodservice Establishments:

Order oysters fully cooked.

In the Shell:

Purchase oysters with the shells closed. Throw away any oysters with shells already opened.
To prepare oysters for eating, choose one of the following methods:
Boil oysters until the shells open. Once open, boil for an additional 3-5 minutes.
Steamer - add oysters to water that are already steaming and cook live oysters until the shells open; once open steam for another 4-9 minutes.

Use smaller pots to boil or steam oysters. Using larger pots, or cooking too many oysters at one time, may cause uneven heat distribution, which may cause the oysters in the middle to not get fully cooked.

Discard any oysters that do not open during cooking.
Shucked Oysters:

To prepare oysters for eating, choose one of the following methods:
Boil or simmer shucked oysters for at least 3 minutes or until the edges curl.
Fry at 375 degrees for at least 3 minutes.
Broil 3 inches from heat for 3 minutes.
Bake at 450 degrees for 10 minutes.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Oh crud, now they're going after caffeine...

Toxic Note: I hate posting this one. However, I am now heading off to search for some way to increase my serotonin (aside from exercising) so I can keep imbibing my caffeine. At least I now have an excuse for gaining weight. It's not 'cause I sit in front of the computer for most of the day, it's because I'm chugging caffeine while I'm sitting. I am a very happy person, not depressed in the least. Therefore, I declare the following partially bunk. Caffeine as an excuse for weight gain I can live with...

Caffeine Plays Critical Role in Obesity and Depression, Says Researcher Phoenix Gilman

ATLANTA, Dec. 20 /PRNewswire/ -- The #1 most socially accepted, legalized drug is caffeine. Both young and old consume it daily - and at an alarming rate - be it in their lattes, energy drinks, ice teas, sodas, etc. Yet caffeine is highly addictive and it drastically depletes serotonin, a major neurotransmitter that governs critical aspects of the brain's ability to function properly.
Obesity is a frightening epidemic. Antidepressants are the most prescribed pharmaceutical drug. As such, researcher and international author Phoenix Gilman is urgently trying to inform others, through her book and interviews nationwide, that caffeine is contributing significantly to our health crisis.

Gilman says, "Caffeine, along with many other things, depletes serotonin. Side effects of low serotonin are numerous, ranging from carbohydrate cravings, binge eating, obesity, to anxiety, ADD, depression, alcoholism and suicidal behavior - not forgetting, insomnia, PMS, migraines, increased risks for type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease and certain cancers. Shockingly, no one in the media is talking about this clinically proven research, research that has the potential to help millions live healthier. And though I'm thrilled to hear CA is considering labeling caffeine as a toxic substance, the awareness needs to go far beyond that."

About the author: Entrepreneur Phoenix Gilman is an internationally respected author and weight loss/wellness expert with 30 years of experience, from personal trainer and sports nutritionist, to researcher, product developer, consumer activist and speaker. Fed up with the misinformation and marketing scams running rampant within the diet, food and pharmaceutical industries, she vowed to make a difference. Her book, "DIET FAILURE ... THE NAKED TRUTH: The Brain Chemistry Key to Losing Weight and Achieving Extraordinary Health" is the result.

Her research has been recognized by many, including the Centers for Disease Control, Forbes.com, Focus Atlanta (CW television network), Citizens Commission on Human Rights and best-selling authors Michael Murray, ND, co- author of the Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine, and Diana Schwarzbein, MD, author of The Schwarzbein Principle. Phoenix has done over 200 interviews nationwide, from radio, print, to TV.

DEWALT Recalls Cordless Drills due to Fire Hazard

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.

Name of Product: DEWALT Cordless Drills
Units: About 346,000
Manufacturer: DEWALT Industrial Tool Company, of Towson, Md.
Hazard: The trigger switch of the cordless drill can overheat, posing a fire hazard to consumers.
Incidents/Injuries: DEWALT has received 11 reports of trigger switches overheating. No injuries or property damage have been reported.
Description: This recall involves DEWALT individual cordless drills listed below:

Model Number
Description
Date Codes

DC920 Heavy-Duty XRP(tm) 1/2" (13mm) 18 Volt Cordless Drill/Driver 200723 through 200742
DC930 Heavy-Duty XRP(tm) 1/2" (13mm) 14.4 Volt Cordless Drill/Driver 200625 through 200746
DC935 Heavy-Duty XRP(tm) 1/2" (13mm) 14.4 Volt Cordless Hammerdrill/Drill/Driver 200627 through 200746
DC936 Heavy-Duty XRP(tm) 1/2" (13mm) 14.4 Volt Cordless Hammerdrill/Drill/Driver 200635 through 200746
DC940 Heavy-Duty XRP(tm) 1/2" (13mm) 12 Volt Cordless Drill/Driver 200635 through 200746

The model number is printed on a sticker on the side of the unit. The date code is embossed on the bottom of the unit. Units stamped with an "M" following the date code have been repaired and are not included in this recall. The packaging of repaired drills has a green dot sticker near the UPC label.
Sold at: Wholesale distributors and retailers from about June 2006 through December 2007 for between $180 and $280.
Manufactured in: Mexico
Remedy: Consumers should stop using the drills immediately and contact DEWALT for the location of the nearest service center to receive a free inspection and, if necessary, free repair.
Consumer Contact: Call DEWALT toll-free at (888) 742-9168 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday or visit firm's Web site at www.DEWALT.com

Shopping Channel HSN Agrees to Pay $875,000 Civil Penalty

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) announced today that HSN LP (previously known as Home Shopping Network), of St. Petersburg, Fla., has agreed (pdf) to pay a civil penalty of $875,000. The civil penalty settles allegations that HSN LP failed to report in a timely manner, as required by federal law, serious injuries and hazards with the Welbilt Electronic Pressure Cookers.

CPSC alleged that from September 2001 through about October 2004, HSN received at least 25 reports from consumers indicating that the pressure cookers contained a defect that could create a substantial product hazard or that the pressure cookers created an unreasonable risk of serious injury. CPSC alleged that HSN failed to immediately report this information as required by federal law.

HSN LP finally reported information to CPSC in February 2005.

In June and October 2005, these pressure cookers were the subject of a recall. Under the Consumer Product Safety Act, manufacturers, distributors and retailers are required to immediately report to CPSC information about products that could create a substantial risk of injury to the public or that create an unreasonable risk of serious injury or death. In agreeing to settle this matter, HSN denied CPSC's allegations that it violated the CPSA.

To see this press release on CPSC's web site, including a picture of the product involved and links to the agreement and recall, please go to: http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml08/08153.html

Gap Outlet Recalls Boys' Jackets; Drawstring at Waist Poses EntrapmentHazard

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntaryrecall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.

Name of Product: "Warmest Jacket" Boys' Jackets
Units: About 16,200
Retailer: Gap Outlet, operated by Gap Inc., of San Francisco, Calif.
Hazard: The jackets have a waist drawstring with a toggle that could become snagged or caught in small spaces or doorways, which can pose an entrapment hazard to children. In February 1996, CPSC issued guidelines (pdf) to help prevent children from getting entangled at the waist by drawstrings in upper garments, such as jackets and sweatshirts.
Incidents/Injuries: None reported.
Description: The jackets are hooded, zip in front, and have a drawstring at the waist. They were sold in navy and gray in multiple children's sizes. "Gap Outlet" is printed on a label at the neck. Style number 513573 is printed on a white label sewn behind the size and product care label near the neckline.
Sold exclusively at: Gap Outlet stores nationwide from September 2007 through December 2007 for about $50.
Manufactured in: Indonesia
Remedy: Consumers should stop wearing the jacket immediately and return it to any Gap Outlet store for a full refund. Consumers who return the jacket before April 30, 2008, will also receive a $5 appreciation card. Consumers choosing to keep the jacket should immediately remove the drawstring to eliminate the hazard.
Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact the company toll-free at (888) 747-3704 between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, Saturday 12 p.m. through 7 p.m. ET, and Sunday 12 p.m. through 6p.m., or visit the firm's Web site at www.gapinc.com

North American Breaker Co. Recalls Counterfeit Circuit Breakers Due to Fire Hazard

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.

Name of Product: Counterfeit Circuit Breakers labeled as "Square D"
Units: About 50,000
Distributor/Retailer: North American Breaker Co. Inc. (NABCO), of Burbank, Calif.
Hazard: The recalled circuit breakers labeled "Square D" have been determined by Square D to be counterfeit and can fail to trip when they are overloaded, posing a fire hazard to consumers.
Incidents/Injuries: None reported.
Description: The counterfeit circuit breakers are black and are labeled as Square D QO-series models 110, 115, 120, 130, 210, 215, 220, 225, 230, 235, 240, 250, 260, 280, 1515, 1520, 2020, 2125, 315, 340, 350, 360, and 3100. Actual Square D circuit breakers have (a) the amp rating written on the handle in white paint on the front of the breaker; (b) the Square D insignia molded onto the breaker side, and; (c) a yellow chromate mounting clip with half of the top of the clip visible. If your breaker, labeled as Square D, does not match this description, it could be counterfeit.
Sold by: NABCO, electrical distributors, and retailers nationwide from March 2003 through April 2006 for between $3 and $85.
Manufactured in: China
Remedy: Consumers should contact NABCO to determine if the breaker they have is counterfeit and to arrange for a free inspection and replacement or refund if necessary.
Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact NABCO at (866) 505-5851 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. PT, email the firm at recall@nabreaker.com, or visit the firm's Web site atwww.nabcorecall.com - this is not a Square D Company recall.

Tot Tower Blocks Recalled by eeBoo Corp.; Children's Toy Can PoseChoking Hazard

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product.

Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.

Name of Product: Tot Tower toy blocks
Units: About 170,000
Importer: eeBoo Corp., of New York, N.Y.
Hazard: The plastic covering on the toy blocks can detach, posing a choking hazard to children.
Incidents/Injuries: The firm has received two reports of the plastic covering detaching from the blocks and being mouthed by young children.
No injuries have been reported.
Description: The recalled Tot Tower blocks are sold in sets of 10 blocks ranging from 6 x 6 inches to 1.5 x 1.5 inches. The cardboard blocks are covered in a plastic laminate film. The blocks have various images and themes including Things I Know New; Garden Fairies; Hardware Store; Around the Land; Read-To-Me; Animal Sounds; Animal Alphabet; ABC; and Nursery Friends. "Tot Towers" and "eeBoo Corporation" are printed on the product's packaging.
Sold at: Specialty and gift shops nationwide from January 2003 through September 2007 for about $20.
Manufactured in: China
Remedy: Consumers should immediately take the recalled toy away from children, and return it to the place of purchase for a full refund, or contact eeBoo Corp. directly to receive a replacement toy.
Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact eeBoo Corp. at (800) 791-5619 between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, or visit the firm's Web site at www.eeboo.com

FDA Warns Consumers Not to Use Super Shangai, Strong Testis, Shangai Ultra, Shangai Ultra X, Lady Shangai, and Shangai Regular (also known as Shangai

Toxic Note: I know that none of OUR readers would EVER buy or use any of these products, you're too smart to try unregulated drugs off the Internet without checking 'em out first. But, just on the off-chance someone out there is considering it (after all, someone must be buying it or they wouldn't be making it to sell...), here's the info from the FDA:

These products are illegal drugs and contain undeclared active ingredients in prescription erectile dysfunction drugs

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is advising consumers not to buy or use Super Shangai, Strong Testis, Shangai Ultra, Shangai Ultra X, Lady Shangai, and Shangai Regular, also marketed as Shangai Chaojimengnan, products.

These products, which originate in China, are being marketed for the treatment of erectile dysfunction (ED) and for sexual enhancement. Although labeled as dietary supplements, these products do not qualify as dietary supplements because they contain undeclared active ingredients of FDA-approved prescription drugs for erectile dysfunction. The products are thus drugs that are illegal because they lack FDA approval.

The undeclared ingredients in these products may interact with nitrates found in some prescription drugs (such as nitroglycerin) and can lower blood pressure to dangerous levels. Consumers with diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or heart disease often take nitrates. ED is a common problem in men with these medical conditions. Because they may have been advised against taking ED drugs, they may seek out products like these because they are marketed as "all natural" or as not containing the active ingredients in approved, prescribed ED drugs. Additionally, because the manufacturing source of the active ingredients in these products is unknown, consumers should be aware that the safety, efficacy, and purity of these ingredients can not be validated.

"Products like these put consumers at considerable risk because they contain undeclared active ingredients in FDA approved drugs that require a prescription to obtain," said Janet Woodcock, M.D., FDA's deputy commissioner for scientific and medical programs, chief medical officer, and acting director of the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER). "An unsuspecting consumer with underlying medical issues may buy and take these products without knowing that they can cause serious drug interactions."

FDA performed chemical testing of the products that revealed that Super Shangai, Strong Testis, Shangai Ultra, Shangai Ultra X, and Lady Shangai contain sildenafil, the active ingredient in Viagra, an FDA-approved drug for erectile dysfunction. Shangai Regular, also marketed as Shangai Chaojimengnan, contains an unapproved substance with a structure similar to sildenafil that may cause similar side effects and drug interactions. Neither sildenafil nor the analog of sildenafil is listed as an ingredient on the label of any of these products.

FDA advises consumers who have used any of these products to discontinue use and consult their health care providers if they have experienced any adverse events that they feel are related to the use of these products. Consumers and health care professionals can report adverse events to FDA's MedWatch program at 800-FDA-1088 or online at www.fda.gov/medwatch/report.htm. FDA recommends that consumers should talk to their health care provider about FDA-approved treatments for erectile dysfunction. FDA may take further regulatory actions to protect consumers from these illegal products.

The products are packaged and distributed by Shangai Distributor, Inc. of Coamo, Puerto Rico.

Veeeerrrryyy Interesting

The Fayette Front Page put number trackers on all of their blogs (along with the ability for people to sign up for email notification when blogs are updated). Then they put a bunch of the blogs across the top of the page to let their readers know about the blogs.

This one is topping the charts.

I think it's the title.

But here's the question: Is it because it's a catchy title or is it because people are drawn to the negative?

Next in line numbers-wise are State and National Election News (SNEN) and The Barefoot Photographer.

Now the numbers include people from anywhere who hit on the blogs, not just people coming from my current home, Fayette County, GA. I can see that with all the interest in the Presidential elections that the SNEN column would be getting a lot of pings given the number of candidates that it's keeping up with.

The Barefoot Photographer is a great blog for those who enjoy photography. The writer, Donna Rosser, has a photography club at the Fayette Art Center and Gallery, plus she teaches. Love her work.

Back to the question of human nature. Because that's what my original question was really about. Are we drawn to the negative? Is it human nature or have we been trained by the media, the movies, the television programs, the news?

Or, do you simply like the title?

Me, I love the title.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Amazon.com Update

Well, been "communicating" with Amazon.com. They send an email saying their sorry, will I give them another chance. I send one back saying nope. They send one saying will I give them another chance.

So far I've had an email from Prakash, Monica, Subhrajit, and Vipin Sai. I will say that the first paragraph shows they kinda-sorta read part of my email. Kinda-sorta. The rest is canned.

I finally told 'em I didn't want anymore canned emails, not to bother to respond. I received a response saying (again) that they were truly sorry, they hoped I'd give them a second chance, but if I wanted to write anything else it needed to go to their general questions complaint site.

Hmmm... do ya think they're tired of me answering their canned responses?

There's a perverse part of my nature that thinks I could keep this going until they got tired of hearing from me.... How long would it be before they blocked my email? Closed my account?

I'm heading over to the site now to see if there's some way to cancel it myself. I'm tired of playing and they're obviously not very interested in one little peon customer. Oh, I guess I shouldn't say that, they want me to give them one more chance, give them one more chance, give them one more chance, give them one more chance...

Caffiend Alert for Caffeine Lovers!

Yours truly has one major addiction... caffeine. I am truly a caffiend. Can't stand coffee, so I have to get my false energy from other substances. Hot tea is my favorite, drink at least one to four cups a day.

Energy drinks are great, too, although I'm trying to cut back on the fizzy stuff. Bad for your calcium retention. The doc explained to me that when you drink soda's your body counteracts the carbonation by zapping calcium to your stomach. Hence you're leeching calcium from your system. I know that is an over-simplification of what happens, but that's the general gist.

Here's the point of this blog... If you love caffeine, check out Swiss Miss Hot Chocolate. They have a new one (or at least this is the first time I've ever noticed it) on the shelf: "Pick-Me-Up" with ADDED CAFFEINE. Love hot chocolate? love caffeine? What a great combo.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Hard lesson learned re: Amazon

My husband has surgery earlier this month and was still unable to be left alone for long periods of time. I have shopped on-line before, love having packages just show up on my front porch. When Greg's daughter-in-law sent a list for the grandkids with the suggestion that I shop on Amazon I thought it was a GREAT idea!

I popped over, found the things we wanted and ordered. Voila, done without any hassle. They guaranteed arrival before Christmas, we had 8 full days so there was a fudge factor allowance in case there was a glitch.

One of the books arrived on the 20th. Checked email and found a note saying that they'd split the shipment, the rest would arrive by the 24th. Cutting it close as that's Christmas Eve and that's when the grandkids were coming, but they promised.

On the 22nd I called as it hadn't arrived. On-line tracker showed only that the carrier had been notified to pick up. I was starting to do a mini-panic.

The person I talked to (from India I believe based on accent), was rather abrupt. He said they were getting a lot of calls and that my shipment was like everyone else's and it would arrive by Christmas. The carriers were very busy and they were not all scanning the items thus it was not showing on their tracker that it been picked up but it would arrive. Basically he said I was wasting his time calling. Frustrating as it seemed he didn't even bother to check anything, just spouted his standard lines.

Christmas eve day... no packages. But the mail was running behind, we saw trucks zipping up and down the road delivering packages and knew they worked late to make sure the packages arrived.

The kids came. The kids left. No Christmas presents from Amazon. The grandkids were so good about it (probably because the parents had warned them on the way over that their Christmas presents might not have made it to our doorstep). Disappointed but good. I was so frustrated. We must have sneaked outside 20 times to see if maybe the packages had been delivered.

What a rip. That is the last time I will order presents on-line from Amazon. I know that only allowing a week for delivery at Christmas is a risky proposition. However, I think if when I called their so-called help line someone should have done some cursory checking. It they had followed up, the presents would have been found and delivered. I used to manage an area where we dealt with similar situations. I am well aware of what COULD have been done.

I'm not giving up on ordering on-line. I just won't be shopping Amazon anymore. If it hadn't been for my recovering husband, I wouldn't have allowed Christmas to sneak up so quickly. I'll know in the future to shop earlier...

I sent Amazon an email, not yelling, not nasty, but definitely to the point, regarding the shipment. It's been 12 hours. I haven't heard back from them yet. They're going further and further in the dog house with me.

Friday, December 21, 2007

FDA Develops New Tools to Further Improve the Security of Food and Cosmetics

Effort part of Food Protection Plan for ensuring the safety of domestic and imported foods eaten by American consumers

As part of the FDA’s comprehensive Food Protection Plan initiative, the agency today released self-assessment tools for industry to minimize the risk of intentional contamination of food and cosmetics. The tools are companion pieces designed to make previously issued industry guidance documents more user-friendly and practical.

Food protection is one of FDA’s top priorities and that means guarding against both intentional and unintentional contamination of foods. “The tools FDA is providing will help members of the food and cosmetic industry identify opportunities to better guard against intentional contamination of their products,” said CFSAN Acting Center Director David Acheson.

In 2003, FDA issued a set of Food and Cosmetic Security Preventive Measures Guidance documents. These documents are aimed at operators of food and cosmetic establishments, as well as businesses that produce, process, store, repack, relabel, distribute, sell or transport foods, food ingredients, and cosmetics to help them minimize the risk of malicious, criminal, or terrorist actions involving products under their control.

The guidance documents are:

Food Producers, Processors, and Transporters: Food Security Preventive Measures Guidance
Importers and Filers: Food Security Preventive Measures Guidance
Retail Food Stores and Food Service Establishments: Food Security Preventive Measures Guidance
Cosmetics Processors and Transporters: Cosmetics Security Preventive Measures Guidance
Dairy Farms, Bulk Milk Transporters, Bulk Milk Transfer Stations and Fluid Milk Processors
Food Security Preventive Measures Guidance

Using feedback from industry, the FDA repackaged the information found in the guidance documents and created a corresponding self-assessment tool for each document. By using the tools, industry members can get a quick and detailed assessment of the measures they currently have in place to protect against intentional contamination of their products. With this consolidated information, it will be easy for them to see where meaningful improvements to their current practices can be made.

The self-assessment tool asks the participant to mark the presence of a variety of food protection measures with a Y (Yes), N (No), N/A (Not Applicable), or Don't Know for each item. Examples of measures addressed by the self-assessment tools include the possibility of product tampering; identification of security procedures and responsibilities; and evaluation of response strategies in the event of product tampering or other intentional contamination.

For more information

The Food and Cosmetic Security Preventive Measures Guidance documents and self assessment tools http://www.cfsan.fda.gov/~dms/defguids.html

The Food Protection Plan
http://www.fda.gov/oc/initiatives/advance/food/plan.html.

Whole Foods Market Expands Allergy Alert on 365 Organic Everyday Value Swiss Chocolate Bars to All Varieties and Lots (Dec. 21)

Whole Foods Market is expanding the recall of the 365 Organic Everyday Value Swiss Milk Chocolate Bars with Rice Crisps with a Best If Used By date of 11/21/07, to include all varieties and all lots of chocolate bars with a Best If Used By date prior to 11/08/09.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Hooker Furniture Announces Voluntary Bunk Bed Recall

Business Wire - In cooperation with the Consumer Product Safety Commission, Hooker Furniture (NASDAQ-GS:HOFT) is issuing a voluntary recall on bunk beds from its Albany Park, Swedish Accents, Mariner's Landing and Chelsea's Place youth bedroom groups. A joint press release with the CPSC was issued on December 13, 2007. To see a copy of the joint press release, please go to www.cpsc.gov.

Names of Products: Bunk beds in the Albany Park, Swedish Accents, Mariner's Landing and Chelsea's Place youth bedroom groups.

Units: About 1,300

Importer: Hooker Furniture Corporation of Martinsville, Va.

Hazard: The bunk beds have gaps between parts of the upper bunk exceeding the space allowed by the federal bunk bed safety standard, posing a potential entrapment or strangulation hazard.

Incidents/Injuries: None reported.

Description: The recalled bunk beds come in twin-over-twin, twin-over-full and loft beds in the group names of Albany Park, Swedish Accents, Mariner's Landing and Chelsea's Place. The bunk beds come in natural, cherry, white and black finishes. Some of the bunk beds are also made of metal.

Sold at: Hooker Furniture retailers nationwide from August 2005 through August 2007, for about $1,000.

Manufactured in: Malaysia and Vietnam.

Remedy: Consumers should not allow children to use the recalled bunk beds and contact the retailers where purchased to schedule a free, in-home repair.

Consumer contact: For additional information, contact Hooker Furniture toll-free at (877) 705-8408 between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. ET daily Monday through Friday, or go to the "Contact Us" section of this Website, http://www.hookerfurniture.com/index.cfm/go/contact_us.show.cfm

While no incidents or injuries have been reported, Hooker Furniture has learned that the size of the openings in some areas of the upper bunk exceeds the space allowed by the federal bunk bed safety standard, posing a potential entrapment or strangulation hazard.

Consumers have been instructed to contact the retailer where they originally purchased the bunk bed to schedule a free, in-home repair.

The affected bunk bed designs have been corrected for future shipments, which will comply with applicable safety regulations and standards.

For additional information, contact Hooker Furniture toll-free at (877) 705-8408 between 8 am. and 4:30 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday, or visit the "Contact Us" section of the firm's Website at www.hookerfurniture.com.

Ranked among the nation's top 10 largest publicly traded furniture sources based on 2006 shipments to U.S. retailers, Hooker Furniture Corporation is an 83-year old residential wood, metal and upholstered furniture resource. The Company's principal customers are home furnishings retailers who are broadly dispersed throughout North America. Major wood furniture product categories include home entertainment, home office, accent, dining, bedroom and bath furniture. Hooker's residential upholstered seating companies include Cherryville, N.C.-based Bradington-Young LLC, a specialist in upscale motion and stationary leather furniture, and Bedford, Va.-based Sam Moore Furniture LLC, a specialist in upscale occasional chairs with an emphasis on fabric-to-frame customization. Please visit our websites at www.hookerfurniture.com, www.bradington-young.com and www.sammoore.com.

Nearly One in Five Americans Say They Can't Afford Needed Health Care

Nearly one in five U.S. adults - more than 40 million people - report they do not have adequate access to the health care they need, according to the annual report on the nation's health released today by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The report, "Health, United States, 2007," is a compilation of more than 150 health tables prepared by CDC's National Center for Health Statistics.

The report also contains a special section focusing on access to care, which shows that nearly 20 percent of adults reported that they needed and did not receive one or more of these services in the past year - medical care, prescription medicines, mental health care, dental care, or eyeglasses - because they could not afford them.

"There has been important progress made in many areas of health such as increased life expectancy and decreases in deaths from leading killers such as heart disease and cancer. But this report shows that access to health care is still an issue where we need improvement," said CDC Director Julie Gerberding, M.D., M.P.H.

In 2005, nearly one in 10 people between the ages of 18 and 64 said they were unable to get necessary prescription drugs during the past 12 months due to cost. Nearly 10 percent said they delayed receiving needed medical care. This report did not study the relationship between access to health care services and health outcomes.

Other major findings of the report include:

* Young adults 18-24 years of age were more likely than children or older adults to lack a usual source of care and to be uninsured. About 30 percent of these young adults did not have a usual source of health care, and an equal percentage were uninsured.
* One in 10 adults ages 45-64 years did not have a usual source of health care, and more than 5 percent of adults in this age group who had diagnosed high blood pressure, serious heart conditions, or diabetes reported not having a usual source of medical care.
* In 2005, one out of five people under the age of 65 reported being uninsured for at least part of the 12 months prior to being interviewed. The majority of this group reported being uninsured for more than 12 months.
* One in 10 women aged 45-64 years with income below the poverty level reported delaying medical care due to lack of transportation.
* About one-third of all children living below the poverty level did not have a recent dental visit in 2005, compared with less than one-fifth of children with higher income.

The report features data on virtually every health topic from all stages of life, and does show a number of important gains:

* In 2006, 87 percent of children age 19-35 months received three or more doses of pneumococcal conjugate vaccine, an increase from 41 percent in 2002.
* In 2001-2004, the age-adjusted percentage of adults with high blood cholesterol was 17 percent down from 21 percent in 1988-94.
* In 2001-2004 about 25 percent of adults 20-64 years of age had untreated cavities, down from nearly 50 percent in 1971-74.

The full Health, United States: 2007 is available at http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/. For more information about the latest Department of Health and Human Services initiatives proposed to provide affordable health care coverage to every American visit www.hhs.gov/everyamericaninsured for more information.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

TOBY N.Y.C. Expands Children's Metal Jewelry Recall Due to Risk of Lead Exposure

Name of Product: TOBY & ME Jewelry Sets
Units: About 23,500 (about 14,000 jewelry sets were recalled on August 22, 2007)
Importer: TOBY N.Y.C., of New York, N.Y.
Hazard: The recalled metal jewelry sets contain high levels of lead. Lead is toxic if ingested by young children and can cause adverse health effects.
Incidents/Injuries: None reported.
Description: This recall involves jewelry sets sold in different styles: a pink and clear crystal bead necklace and bracelet set with a painted metallic crown pendant; a pink and white pearl necklace and bracelet set with a painted metallic poodle pendant; and a pink pearl necklace, earrings and ring set. This recall is expanded to include two additional styles: a pink crystal and wood bead necklace and bracelet set with a monkey pendant; and a pink and clear crystal bead necklace and bracelet set with a heart pendant. All sets are sold in a pink gift box with "TOBY & ME" printed on the front and "TOBY & ME" hangtags attached to the packaging.
Sold at: T.J. Maxx, Marshalls, A.J. Wright, Cracker Barrel, and Shopko stores nationwide from August 2006 through August 2007 for between $8 and $15.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should immediately take the recalled jewelry away from children and contact TOBY N.Y.C. for information on receiving a full refund or replacement item.
Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact TOBY N.Y.C. toll-free at (866) 235-0588 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, or email the firm at info@tobynyc.com

Children's Spinning Wheel-Metal Necklaces Recalled By Rhode Island Novelty Due to Risk of Lead Exposure

Name of Product: Children's Spinning Wheel-Metal Necklaces
Units: About 850 Manufacturer: Rhode Island Novelty, of Cumberland, R.I.
Hazard: The clasp on the necklaces contain high levels of lead. Lead is toxic if ingested by young children and can cause adverse health effects.
Incidents/Injuries: None reported.
Description: This recall involves 30"-inch-long link necklaces with a spinning wheel pendant. The wheel pendant, designed to resemble car's spinning tire rim, has rhinestones attached to the front, a silver base and measures 2 ¾-inches in diameter. The item has a clear plastic hang tag with a UPC code of 0 97138 68502 5.
Sold at: Family entertainment centers, redemption centers, and small discount stores nationwide and at www.rinovelty.com from November 2006 through May 2007 for about $2.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should immediately take the recalled jewelry away from children and return it to the store where purchased or to Rhode Island Novelty for a free replacement jewelry item.
Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Rhode Island Novelty at (800) 528-5599 between 8:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, or visit the firm's Web site at www.rinovelty.com

Guidecraft Inc. Recalls Children's Puppet Theaters Due to Violation of Lead Paint Standard

Name of Product: Floor Puppet Theaters
Units: About 10,000
Manufacturer: Guidecraft Inc., of Englewood, N.J.
Hazard: Surface paints on the puppet theater's wooden panels contain excessive levels of lead, violating the federal lead paint standard.
Incidents/Injuries: None reported.
Description: The recalled puppet theater has a chalkboard surface on the front and colored side panels. The puppet theater measures about 35 inches in length, 14 inches in width and about 52 inches in height.
Sold at: Specialty toy stores, gift shops, catalogs and Web sites nationwide from June 2006 through August 2007 for about $90.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should immediately take the recalled puppet theaters away from children and contact Guidecraft to receive a replacement theater or another product of equal value.
Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Guidecraft toll-free at (888) 824-1308 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. CT Monday through Friday, or visit the firm's Web site at www.guidecraft.com

Children's Toy Rakes Sold Exclusively at Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores Recalled Due to Violation of Lead in Paint Standard

Name of Product: Children's Toy Rake
Units: About 16,000
Importer: Jo-Ann Stores Inc., of Hudson, Ohio
Hazard: Surface paint on the handle of the rake can contain excessive levels of lead paint, violating the federal lead paint standard.
Incidents/Injuries: None reported.
Description: The recalled children's rake has a green handle with a yellow duck head attached to the handle. The rake has seven purple tines, also known as teeth. The rake is about 24 inches long. "Robbie Ducky(tm) Garden Collection Rake" is printed on a tag attached to the handle. Sold exclusively at: Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores nationwide from January 2007 through September 2007 for about $7.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should immediately take the recalled toy rake away from children and return it to any Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Store for a full refund.
Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Jo-Ann Stores Inc. toll-free at (888) 739-4120, option 7, between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, email the firm at guest.services@jo-annstores.com, or visit the firm's Web site at www.joann.com

RC2 Recalls Knights of the Sword Toys Due to Violation of Lead Paint Standard

Name of Product: Britain's "Knights of the Sword" Series Toys
Units: About 800
Importer/Distributor: RC2 Corp., of Oak Brook, Ill.
Hazard: Surface paints on the toy knights contain excessive levels of lead, violating the federal lead paint standard.
Incidents/Injuries: None reported.
Description: The three recalled silver knight toys are mounted on red horses sold individually in see-through blister cards. "Britains" and "Knights of the Sword" are printed on the top of the card in the packaging. The recalled toys include a mounted silver knight on a red horse with an axe; a mounted silver knight on a red horse with two hands on a raised weapon; and a mounted silver knight on a red horse with a lance.
Sold at: Specialty toy stores nationwide from April 2004 through March 2006 for about $8.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should take these recalled toys away from young children immediately and contact RC2 to receive a full refund.
Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact RC2 toll-free at (866) 725-4407 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday or visit the firm's Web site at http://recalls.rc2.com

Target Recalls Children's Toy Gardening Tools and Chairs Due to Violation of Lead Paint Standard

Name of Product: Happy Giddy Gardening Tools and Children's Sunny Patch Chairs
Units: About 350,000
Importer: Target, of Minneapolis, Minn.
Manufacturer: Starite International Ltd., of Taiwan
Hazard: The surface paint on the recalled gardening tools and chairs contains excessive levels of lead, violating the federal lead paint standard.
Incidents/Injuries: None reported.
Description: The recall includes the Happy Giddy Gardening Tools and the Sunny Patch Children's Chairs. Gardening tools: caterpillar trowel with an orange and multi-colored handle; kitty cat broom with pink flowers and green handle; pink and green cultivator with a solid green tool portion and pink flowers on the handle; orange and green wood handle hoe and rake with orange flowers; pink and green shovel and trowel with pink flowers; green, orange and light blue snail push broom; multi-colored trowel, hoe, rake with orange on the tool body; multi-colored shovel with solid red on the shovel and eyes on the top of the handle; red and blue owl shaped broom with bristles painted blue, with yellow and black large eyes on the face. Children's Chairs: multi-colored children's Sunny Patch chairs with a giraffe, monkey, and elephant on the back. The cloth seat and back are striped in orange, yellow, green and blue. The chameleon, butterfly and lady bug chair are not included in the recall.

Sold at: Target stores nationwide from August 2006 through August 2007 for between $3 and $10.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should immediately take the products away from children and return the item to the nearest Target store for a full refund.
Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Target at (800) 440-0680 between 7 a.m. and 6 pm. CT Monday through Friday, or visit the firm's Web site at www.target.com

RC2 Corp. Recalls Additional Thomas & Friends Wooden Railway Toys Due to Violation of Lead Paint Standard

Name of Product: Various Thomas and Friends Wooden Railway Toys
Units: About 200,000 (1.5 million other Thomas & Friends railway toys were recalled on June 13, 2007)
Importer/Distributor: RC2 Corp., of Oak Brook, Ill.
Hazard: Surface paints on the toys can contain excessive levels of lead, violating the federal lead paint standard.
Incidents/Injuries: None reported.
Description: The recall involves five toys from the Thomas and Friends Wooden Railway product line: the all-black cargo car, toad vehicle, olive green sod or cargo box and all-green maple tree top and signal base accessories. The front of the packaging has the logo "Thomas & Friends Wooden Railway" in the upper left-hand corner. A tracking code may be located on the bottom of some of the products. Toys marked with codes containing "WJ" and "AZ" are not included in the recall. Recalled Product Name & Tracking Codes All-Black Cargo Car - Included only in the Brendam Fishing Dock Set. The car is labeled "CARGO CAR" and has either no tracking code or one of the following codes on its undersides: 26833i 28233i 23243i00 24643i00 25343i00 27443i00 32043i00 34743i00 01553i00 04553i00 13353i00 14753i00 15453i00 18353i00 Cargo cars sold in other sets are not included. Toad vehicle with brake lever - The vehicle is labeled "TOAD" and has the tracking code 16560W000 on its underside. Olive Green Sodor Cargo Box - The side of the cargo box says "SODOR", the box was included only in the Deluxe Cranky the Crane Set. All-Green Maple Tree Top and Green Signal Base Accessories - Included only in Conductor's Figure 8 Sets.

Sold at: Toy stores and various retailers nationwide from March 2003 through September 2007 for between $10 and $40.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should take the recalled toys away from young children immediately and contact RC2 Corp. for a replacement toy.
Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact RC2 toll-free at (866) 725-4407 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. CT Monday through Friday or visit the firm's Web site at http://recalls.rc2.com

Back to Basics Products Recalls Iced Tea Makers Due to Fire Hazard

Name of Product: IT400 Iced Tea Makers
Units: About 10,000
Importer: Back to Basics Products LLC, of West Bend, Wis. and Bluffdale, Utah
Hazard: The iced tea maker's components can fail, posing a fire hazard to consumers.
Incidents/Injuries: None.
Description: The recalled Iced Tea Maker (Model #IT400) is mostly white and has a 2.5 quart glass pitcher. The recall includes only those products with a date code of CA1307 or CA1307-A. The model number is embossed on the bottom of the unit, and the date code is printed on a small white sticker, which is also on the bottom of the unit.
Sold at: Bon-Ton department stores and hardware stores nationwide, the JCPenney catalog, and Internet retailers from April 2007 through July 2007 for between $40 and $50.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should stop using and unplug the recalled iced tea makers immediately and contact Back to Basics Products to receive a free replacement product or refund.
Consumer Contact: For additional information, call the firm at (800) 874-4084 between 7:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. CT Monday through Friday; visit the firm's Web site at www.backtobasicsproducts.com; or e-mail the firm at IT400recall@btbproducts.com

9/11/07 U.S. and Chinese Product Safety Agencies Announce Agreement To Improve The Safety of Imported Toys and Other Consumer Products

In a cooperative effort to ensure the safety of children's toys, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) announced an agreement with its product safety counterparts in the Chinese government aimed at stopping the use of lead paint in the manufacture of toys and addressing other product safety issues.

At a"Consumer Product Safety Summit" held today in Washington, D.C., CPSC made known that China's General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ) has agreed to take immediately action to eliminate the use of lead paint on Chinese manufactured toys exported to the United States.

Lead paint on toys sold in the U.S. has been banned since 1978. In addition to the lead paint agreement, the two agencies announced work plans for cooperation in four product categories: Toys, Fireworks, Cigarette Lighters, and Electrical Products. The Work Plans provide a roadmap for bilateral efforts to improve the safety of these products, which represent some of the most frequent hazards under CPSC's regulatory jurisdiction.

CPSC Acting Chairman Nancy Nord stated that the Work Plans show "significant forward progress" in the agency's efforts to bring Chinese-made consumer products into line with U.S. safety rules. "This is an important signal from the Chinese government that it iss erious about working with CPSC to keep dangerous products out of American homes," said Acting Chairman Nord. "We will be looking for meaningful cooperation on the ground - that means not just with the Chinese government, but also with industry at both ends of the supplychain."

The Summit also resulted in an agreement by AQSIQ to increase their inspections of consumer products destined for the U.S. and to assist CPSC in tracing hazardous products to the manufacturer, distributor and exporter in China. The two agencies will review the plans' effectiveness within one year to identify possible areas for improvement.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is charged with protecting the public from unreasonable risks of serious injury or death from more than 15,000 types of consumer products under the agency's jurisdiction. Deaths, injuries and property damage from consumer product incidents cost the nation more than $700 billion annually. The CPSC is committed to protecting consumers and families from products that pose a fire, electrical, chemical, or mechanical hazard or can injure children. The CPSC's work to ensure the safety of consumer products - such as toys, cribs, power tools, cigarette lighters, and household chemicals -contributed significantly to the 30 percent decline in the rate of deaths and injuries associated with consumer products over the past 30 years.

Hayes Company Inc. Recalls Outdoor Candles Due to Fire and Burn Hazards

Name of Product: "Avant Yarde" Decorative Glaze Outdoor Candles
Units: About 83,000
Importer/Distributor: The Hayes Company Inc., of Valley Center, Kan.
Hazard: The candle's wax can catch fire causing a high flame, which poses a fire and burn hazard to consumers.
Incidents/Injuries: The firm has received two reports of consumers who suffered minor burns to their hands when they tried to extinguish flames coming from the candle.
Description: The recall involves three styles of outdoor citronella candles with a glazed lower portion that is brown, blue, or green. The item number 18134 can be located on the top left part of the label onthe bottom of the candle.
Sold at: Ace Hardware stores nationwide from February 2006 through June 2007 for about $8.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should stop using the recalled candles immediately and return them to any Ace Hardware store for a full refund.
Consumer Contact: For further information, contact Hayes at (800) 838-5053 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. CT Monday through Friday, or visit the firm's Web site at www.hayesco.com.

Fisher-Price Recalls Bongo Band Toys Due to Violation of Lead Paint Standard

Name of Product: Big Big World 6-in-1 Bongo Band toys
Units: About 8,900
Importer: Fisher-Price Inc., of East Aurora, N.Y.
Hazard: Surface paints on the toys contain excessive levels of lead, which violates the federal law prohibiting lead paint on children's toys.
Incidents/Injuries: None reported.
Description: The recalled toys have two bongos, including one with a yellow and green plastic drum base with a blue drum surface. The other bongo is yellow and green plastic drum base with an orange drum surface with "It's a Big, Big World" printed on it. The toys were sold with animal shaped accessories including a monkey, bird, tambourine and drumstick. The toys have product number K9343 inside the orange drum. A date code between 139-7SH and 232-7SH is printed on the drum's orange ring surface. Bongo Band toys included in this recall must have both the product number and date code.
Sold at: Retail stores nationwide from July 2007 through August 2007 fora bout $20.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should immediately take the recalled toys away from children and contact Fisher-Price for instructions on returning the product in order to receive a free replacement toy.
Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Fisher-Price at (888) 496-8330 anytime or visit the firm's Web site at www.mattel.com/safety

Fisher-Price Recalls Geo Trax Locomotive Toys Due To Violation of Lead Paint Standard

Name of Product: Geo Trax Locomotive Toys
Units: About 90,000
Importer: Fisher-Price Inc., of East Aurora, N.Y.
Hazard: Surface paints on the toys contain excessive levels of lead.
Incidents/Injuries: None reported.
Description: The recall involves the Geo Trax Freightway Transport and Geo Trax Special Track Pack locomotive toys. These toys are red with yellow paint on the ladder and horn details. The recalled models were manufactured between July 31, 2006 and August 20, 2007 and have a date code between 212-6CK through 325-6CK or 001-7CK through 232-7CK marked on the bottom of the product. The packaging on the Freightway Transport model is marked H5705 and the packaging on the Special Track Pack modelis marked K3013.
Sold at: Retail stores nationwide from September 2006 through August 2007 for between $3 and $16.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should immediately take the recalled toys away from children and contact Fisher-Price. Consumers will need to return the product in order to receive a free replacement toy.
Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Fisher-Price toll-free at (888) 496-8330 anytime or visit the firm's Web site at www.service.mattel.com

Mattel Recalls Various Barbie Accessory Toys Due to Violation of Lead Paint Standard

Name of Product: Various Barbie Accessory Toys
Units: About 675,000
Importer: Mattel Inc., of El Segundo, Calif.
Hazard: Surface paints on the toys contain excessive levels of lead which is prohibited under federal law.
Incidents/Injuries: None reported.
Description: The recall involves various Barbie accessory toys that were manufactured between September 30, 2006 and August 20, 2007. The model names, product numbers and affected date code numbers are listed in a chart on CPSC's web site. The product and date code numbers are printed on the largest component of the toy sets.
Sold at: Retail stores nationwide from October 2006 through August 2007 for about $10.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should immediately take the recalled toys away from children and contact Mattel for instructions on how to receive a free replacement toy of equal value.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Mattel'sFisher-Price hotline at (888) 496-8330 anytime, or visit the firm's Website at www.mattel.com/safety

Wolverine Recalls Caterpillar Logger Boots; Can Pose Shock Hazard To User Due to Mislabeling

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.

Name of Product: Logger Boots
Units: About 9,500
Manufacturer: Wolverine World Wide Inc., of Rockford, Mich.
Hazard: The recalled logger boots could be incorrectly labeled as resistant to electrical current. This poses a shock hazard to consumers who come in contact with an electrical current.
Incidents/Injuries: None reported.
Description: This recall involves Caterpillar brand steel toe logger boots. The boots were sold in women's and men's sizes. Women's boots were sold in black and have stock number P88030. Men's boots were sold in brown and black and have stock numbers P88033 or P88034. Stocknumbers are printed on a label on the tongue of the shoe. The Caterpillar logo and "EH" are also printed on the label. The word"Caterpillar" is printed on the outside of the boots.
Sold at: Shoe stores and other independent retailers nationwide from September 2006 through July 2007 for between $90 and $130.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should stop wearing the recalled boots immediately and contact Wolverine World Wide to receive a free replacement pair ofboots.
Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Wolverine World Wide at (800) 789-8586 between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, or visit the firm's Web site www.wolverineworldwide.com. Consumers can also send an email to the company at productnotice@wwwinc.com, or write to Attn: Melissa Newman at Wolverine World Wide at 9341 Courtland Drive NE, Rockford, Mich.49351.

Children's Watering Cans Sold Exclusively at Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores Recalled Due to Violation of Lead in Paint Ban

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.

Name of Product: Robbie Ducky (tm) Kids Watering Cans
Units: About 6,000
Importer: Jo-Ann Stores Inc., of Hudson, Ohio
Hazard: The beak of the watering can contains lead in the paint, which violates the federal law prohibiting lead paint on children's toys. Lead is toxic if ingested by young children and can cause adverse health effects.
Incidents/Injuries: None reported.
Description: The recalled Robbie Ducky (tm) Kids Watering Can is yellow with an orange beak and is about 10 inches high by 6 inches wide."Robbie Ducky(tm) Garden Collection Duck Watering Can" is printed on a sticker on the bottom of the watering can.
Sold exclusively at: Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores nationwide from February 2007 through August 2007 for about $10.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should immediately take the watering can away from children and return it to any Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Store for a full refund.
Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Jo-Ann Stores Inc. toll-free at (888) 739-4120 ext. 7 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, or email the firm at guest.services@jo-annstores.com or visit the firm's Web site at www.joann.com

Toys "R" Us Recalls Wooden Coloring Cases Due To Violation of Lead Paint Standard

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.

Name of Product: Imaginarium Wooden Coloring Cases
Units: About 27,000
Importer / Retailer: Toys "R" Us Inc., of Wayne, N.J.
Hazard: The printed ink on the outer packaging of the wood case contains lead. Also, some of the black watercolor paint contains excessive levels of lead, which violates the federal lead paint standard.
Incidents/Injuries: None reported.
Description: The recall involves the Imaginarium brand 213 Piece Wooden Coloring Case which includes crayons, pastels, colored pencils, fiber pens, paintbrush, pencil, water colors, palette, white paint, ruler and pencil sharpener in a light tan wooden carrying case. The case measuresabout 14 inches high by 19 inches wide.
Sold by: Toys "R" Us stores nationwide and toysrus.com from October 2006 through August 2007 for about $20.
Manufactured in: China
Remedy: Consumers should immediately take the products away from children and return the item to the nearest Toys "R" Us store for store credit.
Consumer Contact: For more information, contact Toys "R" Us at (800) TOYSRUS/869-7787 between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m. ET Monday through Saturday, and between 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. on Sunday, or visit the company's Website at www.toysrus.com

Berko Electric Toe-Space Heaters Recalled Due to Fire Hazard

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.

Name of Products: Toe-Space Electric Heaters
Units: About 84,000
Manufacturer: Berko Electric, of Peru, Ind., now known as Marley Engineered Products, of Bennettsville, S.C.
Hazard: If the fan stops working and the heater continues to run, the unit can overheat, posing a fire hazard.
Incidents/Injuries: Marley has received 29 reports of fires resulting inproperty damage. No injuries have been reported.
Description: The recall involves electric, toe-space heaters typically installed in kitchens and bathrooms at floor level in the recessed space under cabinets.

The recall includes Berko Electric catalog numbers TS,TS-1 and TS-1A and Emerson Electric "Chromalox Comfort Heating" and"Environmental Products" catalog number KSH2000. The heater is controlled by a wall thermostat or a thermostat mounted on the front of the heater. The heater has a removable, black metal grille that measures 23 1/2 -inches wide and 3 1/2 -inches tall with five sets of openings, each with seven horizontal louvers.

Sold by: Berko Electric wholesale distributors nationwide from 1972 through February 1985 and Emerson Electric wholesale distributors from 1980 through February 1985 for between $70 and $170.

Manufactured in: United States

Remedy: Consumers should immediately turn off the heater at thethermostat and, if possible, at the home's circuit breaker or fuse. Consumers should contact Marley to determine if they have a recalled heater and for further instructions.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, call Marley at (800) 642-4328 between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, or visit the firm's Web site at www.berkomep.com/ts.htm

B&F System Inc. Recalls Emergency Tool Kits Due to Fire and Shock Hazards

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.
Name of Product: Emergency Tool Kits
Units: About 43,000
Distributor: B&F System Inc., of Dallas, Texas
Hazard: Booster cables in the recalled kits can have undersized wiring and inadequate connections, posing a fire and shock hazard to consumers.
Incidents/Injuries: None reported.
Description: The recalled emergency tool kits have booster cables in combination with other tools and safety equipment.

The recall includes the following models:
#MTHEK41 - Yorkcraft(tm) 41 piece SAE & Metric kit
#MTHEKSM - Yorkcraft(tm) 6 piece kit
#MTHEKREF - Yorkcraft(tm) 15 piece kit
#MTHEK15 - Yorkcraft(tm) 15 piece kit
#MTEKIT2 - Yorkcraft(tm) Emergency Tool Kit
Sold at: Flea markets and various Internet sites nationwide from June 2003 through May 2007 for between $5 and $45.
Manufactured in: China
Remedy: Consumers should stop using the booster cables in the recalled kits immediately and contact the firm to receive a refund for the cost of the cables.
Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact B&F System toll-free at (877) 586-2926 between 8:30 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. CT Monday through Friday, or visit the firm's Web site at www.bnfusa.com

Electric Heaters Recalled by Aloha Housewares Due to Fire Hazard

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, incooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.

Name of Product: "Aloha Breeze" Portable Electric Heaters
Units: About 281,000
Importer/Distributor: Aloha Housewares, Inc. of Arlington, Texas
Hazard: The heater can overheat, posing a fire hazard.
Incidents/Injuries: Aloha Housewares has received seven reports of heaters melting, smoking or catching fire, including one report of minor property damage. No injuries have been reported.
Description: The recalled electric heaters are white-colored with the name "Aloha Breeze" printed on the front. The recall includes model number 05226 with date codes of 07/05, 08/05 and 11/05. The model number and date code are printed on the silver label located on the bottom of the heater.
Sold at: Wal-Mart stores nationwide from July 2005 to July 2007 for about $15.
Manufactured in: China
Remedy: Consumers should stop using the recalled heaters immediately and contact the firm for instructions on receiving a free replacement.
Consumer Contact: For additional information, call Aloha Housewares at (800) 295-4448 between 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. CT Monday through Friday, or send an e-mail to ahitexaslg@aol.com

Health Care Candadian Style...

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Consumer Advisory: State Agriculture Director Issues Food Safety Alert for Potato Salad

August 31, 2007 -- Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) Director Robert Boggs in conjunction with The Kroger Co. today advises consumers not to consume Kroger brand Mustard or Southern-Style potato salad with a "Best If Used By" date of Sept. 5, 2007, because it may contain E. coli O157:H7.

ODA’s Consumer Analytical Laboratory tested a sample of the Kroger brand Mustard or Southern-style potato salad collected during routine food safety sampling, and found it positive for E. coli O157:H7, a foodborne pathogen.

To date, no illnesses have been reported, and additional samples analyzed by a certified, thirdparty laboratory contracted by Kroger have tested negative for E. coli O157:H7. As a precautionary measure, The Kroger Co. has removed the product from sale. The company encourages consumers to check their refrigerators and freezers for this specific product and, if found, to return it to the store for a full refund.

For more information regarding this product withdrawal, please visit http://www.kroger.com/.
Through ODA’s Division of Food Safety, the department helps assure consumers are provided foods, over-the-counter drugs, dietary supplements, and cosmetics that are safe, unadulterated, and honestly presented. Random, routine testing at the department's Consumer Analytical Laboratory helps identify potentially dangerous or adulterated products. In addition to advising consumers, the department has notified the Food and Drug Administration and local health departments.

NettoCollection Recalls Cribs Due to Entrapment and Strangulation Hazard

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, incooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.

Name of Product: "Moderne" and "Loft" Cribs

Units: About 400 Importer/Distributor: NettoCollection LLC, of New York, N.Y.

Hazard: The crib slats can separate from the side rails, posing an entrapment and strangulation hazard to young children.

Incidents/Injuries: NettoCollection has received three reports of the side rail spindles separating from the top rail. No injuries have been reported.

Description: The crib side rails are made of wood and sold with a brown finish. Only cribs with model numbers NC-137 and NC-140 and date codes 9/03 and 02/04 are included in the recall. The model numbers, date codesand "Made in Poland" are printed on a label on the crib end panels.

Sold at: Juvenile furniture stores nationwide from October 2003 through June 2005 for about $1,350.

Manufactured in: Poland

Remedy: Consumers should stop using the crib immediately and contact NettoCollection to receive two replacement side rails.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Netto Collection toll-free at (866) 996-3886 between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. ET Monday through Friday or visit the firm's Web site at www.nettocollection.com

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Bella Cucina Issues Allergy Alert on Undeclared Walnuts in Death by Chocolate Cookies

Bella Cucina of Atlanta, Georgia is recalling units of Death by Chocolate cookies if your bag does not correctly state that the product contains walnuts. People who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to Walnuts run the risk of serious or life threatening allergic reaction if they consume these products.

Death by Chocolate cookies may have been sold directly to consumers in the following retail stores:

Store
Contact Information

Ballins, LTD
Wendy Legarde550 Elmwood Park BlvdSuite BHarahan, LA 70123

At Home Store
At Home StoreRosie Witherspoon52 N. Main StFairfield, IA 52556

Perfect Package
Perfect PackageAttn:Robin263 Park AveWorcester, MA 1609USA

Lincoln Finishing Touches-NE
Lincoln Finishing Touches-NEAttn: Linda Spurrier3945 S. 48tLincoln, NE 68506USA

Farm Fresh To You Store
Farm Fresh To You StoreFreeman O Barsotti1 Ferry BuildingShop 9San Francisco, CA 94105

The Fig Pantry
The Fig Pantry (bill)Attn: Jennifer21800 Schellville RdSuite CSonoma, CA 95476USA

Black Salt
Black Saltc/o:Scott Weinstein-Fish Marke4883 MacArthur Blvd NWWashington, DC 20007

Great American
Great AmericanAttn: Amy Hamilton-Hails4121 16th Street N.St Petersberg, FL 33703

Kiawah Island Resort
Osprey PointAttn: Ashley Agapion Magee700 Governors Dr.Kiawah Island, SC 29455

Trapp & Co
Trapp & Co.Attn: Helga/Steven4110 Main StreetKansas City, MO 64111US

Joli Home and Events
Joli Home & EventsCheryl Hunter8B MarketBeaufort, SC 29906

James Welch
James WelchJames Welch260 Balfour DriveWinter Park, FL 32792

Crabby Chic
Crabby ChicAttn: Pam Teebo4407 Cascade RdWilmington, NC 28409

McArdles Forest and Garden Center
McArdle's Forest & Garden CtrAttn :Sari48 Arch StreetGreenwich, CT 6830

BCAF Grand Central Station
Bella Cucina Artful Food - GCS1870 Murphy AvenueAtlanta, GA 30310

Wines of Distinction, Inc.
Wines of Distinction, Inc.Attn: Katherine Rose230 E Main StAbingdon, VA 24210USA

Domaine Carneros
Domaine CarnerosAttn:Rose1240 Duhig RoadNapa, CA 94559

Build a Basket
Build A BasketAttn: Mena F/Scott Maybaum32 Rte 10 WestEast Hanover, NJ 07936USA

Design Line Interiors
Design Line InteriorsAttn:Connie4863 Shawline StreetSte. ESan Diego, CA 92111USA

BCAF Virginia Highlands
BCAF-Virginia Highlands1050 North Highland AvenueAtlanta, GA 30306

Nest
NestAttn: Mary Matheson4699 South Hollady BlvdSalt Lake City, UT 84117

Counrty Store - CA
Country Store -CAAttn:Carol L Holmes2408 W. Adrian StreetNewberry, CA 91320

Graeagle Gift Shop
NO CONTACT

Moravian Florist
Moravian FloristAttn: Sue Kirchhoffer2286 Richmond Rd.Staten Island, NY 10306USA

The Cheshire Cat
The Cheshire CatScott Comstock34121 N. Rt 45Grayslake, IL 60030

Kimball Shop
Kimball ShopNancey Kimball135 Main St. NEHarbor,ME 04662USA

Sayville General Store Inc
Sayville General Store, IncAttn: Jackie44 Main StreetSayville, NY 11782

Chintz & Company
Chintz & CompanyAttn: Nicole de Goutiere1720 Store StVictoria, BC V8W 1V5Canada

English Green Interiors
English Green InteriorsAttn: Deborah GreenP. O BOx 2541Cashiers, NC 28717

Bella Donna Designs
Bella Donna DesignsAttn:Donna131 Hurst CirFranklin, NC 28734

Equipment Di Vin
Equipment Di VinCheryl Webster1412 Larimer StreetDenver, CO 80202

Celebrations - FL
Celebrations-FLAttn: Debbie717 N. 12th Ave.Pensacola, FL 32501

French's Kitchen & Bath
French's Kitchen & Bath202 5th StHollister, CA 95023USA

Fanciful Gift Baskets
Fanciful Gift BasketsAttn: Dave5617 MelroseLos Angeles, CA 90038

Harris & Clark General Store
Harris & Clark General StoreAnissa Harris2539 Knox StAtlanta, Georgia 30317

Breckenridge Cheese and Chocolate
Breckenridge Cheese & ChocolateAttn: AnneP.O. Box 3771Breckenridge, CO 80424USA

Son of Moon Fine Foods
Son of the MoonEva Bunnell346 South Main St.Middletown, CT 06457USA

Roche Bros Supermarket
Roche Bros. #101165 Linden StreetWellesley Hill, MA 02481

Tenzie & Co
Tenzie & Co.1116-A Coolidge StreetLafayette, LA 70503USA

Pine Away
Pine Away216 Main St.Annapolis, MD 21401USA

Bee Entertaining
Bee Entertaining124 S. Webster StNaperville, IL 60540USA

The country Farmer
The Country Farmer1 Bloomer RdN. Salem, NY 10560

All stores have been notified of the incident.

The Death by Chocolate cookies is bags are in a 6oz. bag with a sleeve label. The UPC code for this product is 19193 00020. These cookies have a three month shelf life. The cookies being recalled were made on June 14, 2007 and also July 5, 2007 for a total of 36 cases, 12 units per case. The cookie ingredient list did not contain Walnuts.

No Illness have been reported to date.

Consumers should contact Bella Cucina directly at 678.539.8400 so we can refund or replace the cookie bag.

Gerber Legendary Blades Recalls Pocket Knives

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.

Name of Product: Gerber EAB (Exchange-A-Blade)

Pocket Knives Units: About 154,000

Importer: Gerber Legendary Blades, of Portland, Ore., a division of Fiskars Brands Inc., of Madison, Wis

Hazard: During use, the back of the blade of the knife can slide past the blade support, posing a laceration hazard to consumers.

Incidents/Injuries: Gerber has received eight reports of individuals cutting themselves while using the knife, including several individuals who required stitches.

Description: The recall involves Gerber EAB Pocket Knives, model numbers 22-41548, 22-41548CDIP, 22-01548W and 22-41548W. The knives are small, folding utility knives that can be clipped to the owner's pocket. The knives are marked with the "Gerber" trademark.

Sold at: Retail stores nationwide, including Wal-Mart, and through on-line stores from September 2006 through August 2007 for about $11.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should stop using the recalled knives immediately and contact Gerber to receive instructions on how to return the knife for a free replacement knife.

Consumer Contact: For more information, contact Gerber Legendary Blades toll-free at (877) 204-5510 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. PT, Monday through Friday or visit the firm's Web site at www.gerbergear.com

Paramount Apparel International Recalls Youth Hats Due to Strangulation Hazard; Product Sold Exclusively at Bass Pro Shops

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.

Name of Product: Toddler and Youth Nylon Bucket Hats

Units: About 500

Distributor: Paramount Apparel International Inc., of Bourbon, Mo.

Hazard: The hat has a drawstring, posing a strangulation hazard to young children.

Incidents/Injuries: No incidents or injuries have been reported.

Description: The hat is a nylon bucket-shaped hat with mesh sides. There are nylon fabric strips on the side of the hat that snap up. The front of the hat has a zipper pocket with a silver boat-anchor appliqué with embroidered text below. The hat adjusts with a bungee drawstring sewn in the crown of the hat. A label sewn into the back inside of the hat reads "Bass Pro Shops."

Sold: Exclusively at Bass Pro Shops retail stores nationwide from February 2007 through June 2007 for about $8.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should stop using the recalled hats immediately and contact Paramount Apparel to receive a refund or replacement item.

Consumer Contact: For more information, contact Paramount Apparel toll-free at (800) 255-4287 between 7:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. CT Monday through Friday or visit the firm's Web site at www.paramountapparel.com

M&J Engineering Recalls Swivels for Scuba Diving Masks Due to Drowning Hazard

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.

Name of Product: AGA Swivels for Scuba Diving Masks
Units: About 1,500
Manufacturer: M&J Engineering, of Poway, Calif.
Hazard: The swivel, which is attached to a diving mask, could separate while diving. This will result in a sudden loss of the diver's air supply, causing the diver to engage in emergency ascent. This poses a risk of decompression sickness due to rapid ascent or drowning.
Incidents/Injuries: M&J Engineering has received one report of swivels separating from the masks while diving. No injuries have been reported.
Description: This recall involves all SW-3000 2nd stage 360-degree swivels for scuba diving masks manufactured between January 2004 and February 2005. The swivel has the date stamped on its body, below the patent number. Swivels that are already repaired have an arrow stamped on the top right corner of the swivel body.

Sold at: Diving retail stores nationwide between January 2004 and February 2005 for about $60.
Manufactured in: USA
Remedy: Consumers should immediately stop using the scuba diving masks with the swivel attached and contact M&J Engineering to receive a free repair.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact M&J Engineering toll-free at (888) 794-8351 Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. PT, e-mail sales@omniswivel.com, or visit the company's Web site at www.mj-engineering.com

Metz Fresh Announces Voluntary Recall of Spinach

Metz Fresh, LLC is voluntarily recalling bagged spinach as a result of a positive test for Salmonella found during routine company testing.

The spinach is distributed under the label Metz Fresh, in both retail and food service packages. These include 10 and 16 oz bags as well as 4-2.5 lb. and 4 lb. cartons. The only Metz Fresh product affected is spinach that bears the tracking codes 12208114, 12208214 and 12208314. It was distributed in the continental United States and Canada.

There have been no reports of illness or problems related to this spinach.

Salmonella is a common food borne pathogen that can cause severe illnesses, including fever, abdominal cramps and diarrhea. While most individuals recover in three to five days without medical intervention, the infection can be life-threatening to young children, the elderly and those with compromised immune systems. Consumers with any of these symptoms should call their physician.

Consumers are advised to discard this product or return it to the place of purchase for a refund. Consumers with questions about the recall should contact 831-386-1018.

"Nothing is more important to Metz Fresh than the safety of our consumers, period," said Andrew Cumming, President of Metz Fresh. "As soon as we learned of the presumptive positive test, we directed all customers to hold all boxes of the spinach affected as a precaution. Now, with this positive test confirmation, there is no question that we would recall and destroy all spinach bearing these three codes."

The positive test came during independent lab testing Metz Fresh conducts on all of its products. Through its labeling and numbering system, Metz Fresh has already tracked, located and put 'holds' on the vast majority of the cartons of spinach affected. That spinach will not be released into the marketplace.

While the positive test came from only one sample of many on three packing lines, Metz Fresh has, as a precaution, chosen to recall all of the spinach from the ‘field lot’ packed that day on all three lines.

Metz Fresh is keeping appropriate authorities updated on the status of the voluntary recall.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Select Red Flannel Large Breed Adult Formula Dry Dog Food 50lb Bags Voluntarily Recalled in Pennsylvania

August 21, 2007 -- Mars Petcare US, Inc. today announces a voluntary recall of select 50 lb bags of Red Flannel Large Breed Adult Formula dry dog food sold in two stores in Pennsylvania. Only three bags of product were actually sold, with only one bag still unaccounted for. The pet food is being recalled because it has the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella, which can cause serious infections in dogs and cats, and, if there is cross contamination, in people, especially children, the aged, and people with compromised immune systems.

The recalled product should not be sold or fed to pets. Pet owners should dispose of product in a safe manner (example, a securely covered trash receptacle) and return the empty bag to the store where purchased for a full refund.

Salmonella can potentially be transferred to people handling this pet food, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with the product or any surfaces exposed to the product. Healthy people potentially infected with Salmonella should monitor themselves for some or all of the following symptoms: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and fever. Rarely, Salmonella can result in more serious ailments, including arterial infections, endocarditis, arthritis, muscle pain, eye irritation, and urinary tract symptoms. Consumers exhibiting these signs after having contact with this product should contact their healthcare providers.

Pets with Salmonella infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever, and vomiting. Some pets will have only decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain. Well animals can be carriers and infect other animals or humans. If your pet has consumed the recalled product and has these symptoms, please contact your veterinarian.

Recalled pet food Product: Red Flannel Large Breed Adult Formula dry dog food
Size: 50 pound bagUPC Code: 4286900062
Best Buy Date: July 12, 2008
Best Buy Date Location: Back of bag
Affected Stores: The stores are located in Reedsland, PA and Richlandville, PA

Mars Petcare is issuing this action out of an abundance of caution and it sincerely regrets any inconvenience to pet owners as a result of this announcement. This voluntary recall has been issued because FDA detected Salmonella in a sample of Red Flannel Large Breed Adult Formula dry dog food with a best buy date of July 12, 2008 during a recent review.

In an effort to prevent the transmission of Salmonella from pets to family members and care givers, the FDA recommends that everyone follow appropriate pet food handling guidelines when feeding their pets. A list of safe pet food handling tips can be found at: www.fda.gov/consumer/updates/petfoodtips080307.html

This product UPC has been blocked from retail sale at these locations.

Additional information about the product is available on www.marspetcare.com. Pet owners who have questions about the voluntary recall should call (866) 298-8332, or visit the web site for more information.

FDA Approves Risperdal for Two Psychiatric Conditions in Children and Adolescents

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today approved Risperdal (risperidone) for the treatment of schizophrenia in adolescents, ages 13 to 17, and for the short-term treatment of manic or mixed episodes of bipolar I disorder in children and adolescents ages 10 to 17. This is the first FDA approval of an atypical antipsychotic drug to treat either disorder in these age groups.

Until now, there has been no FDA-approved drug for the treatment of schizophrenia for pediatric use and only lithium is approved for the treatment of bipolar disorder in adolescents ages 12 and up.

“The pediatric studies of Risperdal provided an opportunity to assess the effectiveness, proper dose, and safety of using this product in the pediatric population,” said Dianne Murphy, M.D., director of FDA’s Office of Pediatric Therapeutics. “These data have permitted the identification of the effective pediatric dose ranges and have provided an evidence-based approach for treating these disorders in pediatric patients.”

The FDA first approved Risperdal in 1993 for the treatment of schizophrenia in adults. The drug later was approved for the short-term treatment of acute manic or mixed episodes associated with bipolar I disorder in adults and the treatment of irritability associated with autistic disorder in children and adolescents 5 to 16 years old.

Evidence to support this approval was collected through studies the FDA requested as part of its pediatric drug development initiatives.

The efficacy of Risperdal in the treatment of schizophrenia in adolescents was demonstrated in two short-term (6 to 8 weeks), double-blind, controlled trials. All patients were experiencing an acute episode of schizophrenia at the time of enrollment. Treated patients generally had fewer symptoms, including a decrease in hallucinations, delusional thinking, and other symptoms of their illness.

The efficacy of Risperdal in the treatment of manic or mixed episodes in children or adolescents with bipolar I disorder was demonstrated in a three-week, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicenter trial in patients who were experiencing a manic or mixed episode. Treated patients generally had fewer symptoms, including a decrease in their elevated mood and hyperactivity, and other symptoms of their illness.

Drowsiness, fatigue, increase in appetite, anxiety, nausea, dizziness, dry mouth, tremor, and rash were among the most common side effects reported.

Schizophrenia is a serious and disabling psychiatric disorder. Symptoms may include hallucinations, delusions, and disorganized thinking. Bipolar disorder, also known as manic-depressive illness, is a serious psychiatric disorder that causes wide shifts in a person's mood, energy, and ability to function.

Risperdal is manufactured by Janssen, L.P. of Titusville, N.J.

For more information:
FDA Office of Pediatric Therapeutics www.fda.gov/oc/opt/default.htm
National Institute of Mental Health—Schizophrenia www.nimh.nih.gov/healthinformation/schizophreniamenu.cfm
National Institute of Mental Health—Bipolar Disorder www.nimh.nih.gov/healthinformation/bipolarmenu.cfm