Manure Manager

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U.N. proposes new standards on leafy greens


July 16, 2010
By Bruce Blythe

July 16, 2010 – Animal manure should not be used to fertilize lettuce
and other leafy green vegetables to avoid contamination from E. coli,
salmonella and other bacteria, a U.N. food safety group said.

July 16, 2010 – Animal manure should not be used to fertilize lettuce and other leafy green vegetables to avoid contamination from E. coli, salmonella and other bacteria, a U.N. food safety group said.

Illness-causing pathogens in manure “may persist for weeks or even months, particularly if treatment of these materials is inadequate,” according to a report by the Codex Alimentarius Commission released after a July 7 meeting in Geneva.

Untreated manure “should not be applied to leafy vegetables after plant emergence unless it can be demonstrated that product contamination will not occur,” the commission said.

The recommendation against manure use was one of several new rules proposed by Codex, a joint venture of two U.N. agencies, the World Health Organization and the Food and Agriculture Organization. Codex establishes food safety rules for importers and exporters.

U.S. growers said the proposed rules likely won’t affect them since animal manure isn’t widely used as fertilizer.

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