Indiana Gazette from Indiana, Pennsylvania on October 29, 2002 · Page 8
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Indiana Gazette from Indiana, Pennsylvania · Page 8

Indiana, Pennsylvania
Issue Date:
Tuesday, October 29, 2002
Page 8
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Page 8 — Tuesday, October 29, 2002 NATION (Saaettc Army works on three-year sandwich Military stuck on peanut butter ByRONKAMPEAS Associated Press Writer . WASHINGTON — it tops a U.S. Army most-wanted listj unleashes potent chemicals that suck the immediate vicinity dry and goes great with grape jelly. . The struggle to make the classic peanut butter and jelly combination battle-ready for soldiers in the field highlights an effort by top Army scientists to develop pocket sandwiches that will keep without refrigeration for three years. Researchers working on the latest innovation in "meals ready to eat," army lingo for anytime, anywhere munchies, were drawn to the stuffed bread rolls now in supermarket frozen food sections. Convenience is the attraction: no utensils, not much to open yet makes for a satisfying meal, at least in theory. "The trick was to get rid of the 6,000 mile extension cord to the freezer," said Jerry Darsch, who directs the Defense Department's feeding program in Natick, Mass. Four years later, the Army has come up with formulas for two sandwiches — pepperoni and barbecue chicken — that use chemical and natural preservatives to lock moisture in place and inhibit the growth of bacteria and mold. Darsch said his sandwiches are T/ie "spicy beef" pocket sandwich, left, held by Army Pvt. Kemoathe Green of Saginaw, Mich., is more than 2 years old. Green conducted a tour Monday of long-lasting-food technology at the U.S. Army Soldier System Center in Natick, Mass. At right, he ate a pepperoni pocket sandwich while conducting the tour of the of theMRE facility at the U.S. Army Soldier System Center. The MRE, acronym for meal ready to eat, has been designed to last three years in the field. • -- . designed to be as resilient as the troops they feed. "This bad boy will last a rninimurn of three years at 80 degrees, six months at 100 degrees. They will travel to the swampiest swamp, the highest mountain, the most arid desert." Some of the stabilizing agents are manufactured, others are intrinsic to the sandwiches — the bread in the pepperoni sandwich is more or less left alone by the sausage, which lacks moisture; in the barbecue chicken sandwich, acids in the sauce's tomato, vinegar and lemon naturally bind moisture in place. Still, soldiers aren't likely to take a bite until 2006 because more research is needed — principally, the researchers confessed, onPB&J, the sandwich most demanded by troops in focus groups. Other sandwiches in the works include pizza- flavored and ham and cheese. Food-science takes time, Darsch said — "I don't even want to tell you how long it took to develop the Mc- Nugget." The fare currently bouncing around kit bags in Afghanistan in- cludes pasta primavera, beef stew and seafood jambalaya. Water is added to heat pads inside plastic pouches — a heating process more convenient than old flame-based methods, but one that sucks out much of the flavor. Sandwiches are as easy as ripping open a plastic bag — no need for the clumsy little spoons that now go with the MREs. Peanut butter has so far proven too unstable to last three years in battlefield conditions, said Michelle Richardson, a food tech- (AP photo) nologist who has worked on the sandwich. "Peanut butter tries to suck the water out of the bread, the same 'way it sticks to the roof of your mouth," she said. That leads to the growth of bacteria and mold and makes the sandwich inedible. Richardson says her team is closer than ever, and has found ways of stabilizing the peanut butter— but not without killing its stick-to-the- roof-of-your-mouth qualities, a sensation she says no soldier under fire should miss. More data sought on meat recall By EMILY GERSEMA Associated Press Writer WASHINGTON — Some congressional Democrats are asking the Agriculture Department if the illnesses and deaths linked to a listeria outbreak could have been prevented. The lawmakers — Reps. Henry Waxman of California, Marcy Kaptur of Ohio, Rosa DeLauro of Connecticut, Nita Lowey of New York and Maurice Hinchey of New York— are urging the agency to toughen liste- ria-testing regulations. In a letter sent Monday to Agriculture Secretary Ann Veneman, the Democrats said they wanted to know if the agency missed opportunities to prevent the outbreak, which sickened 39 people and killed seven. A federal investigation prompted Wampler Foods in Franconia, Pa., to recall 27 million pounds of ready-to- eat turkey and chicken meat earlier this month. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said lis- teria found in the company's plant probably caused the outbreak. The House members said they were concerned when they learned the plant had conducted its own environmental tests for the deadly bacteria and found positive results "but failed to disclose this information to USDA inspectors at the time of the testing." The lawmakers demanded that the department hand over information about any sanitation violations at the plant. Officials warn Americans in Jordan to be vigilant BySONYAROSS *; Associated Press Writer •I WASHINGTON — Officials cau- rJtioned Americans in Jordan to be ^vigilant as authorities there investi- -sgated whether the shooting death of 3U.S. diplomat Laurence Foley was a ;jpl armed attack against an American ^target. 'A The U.S. Embassy in Amman was ^'closed Monday for all but emergency ^business, but other embassies in the «region remained open. Further deci- i sions about the Amman embassy, in• eluding when it will reopen, will be ;made once officials assess security :, conditions in the Jordanian capital, ! State Department spokesman : Richard Boucher said. Foiey's death served as a jolting re• minder of American vulnerability in ' parts of the world where opposition ' to U.S. policies is fervent. In a city that Americans generally consider safe, diplomatic vehicles were escorted Monday by red beret-wearing special forces riding in jeeps equipped with machine guns. Embassy officials warned U.S. citi- • zens in Jordan to be cautious, to vary itheir travel routes — paying "partic- 1,'ularly high" attention when entering or leaving their homes — and to report all suspicious activity to police. No one claimed responsibility for the assassination, and U.S. officials did not immediately brand it an act of terrorism. The White House, however, said terrorism could not be ruled out, and Boucher said the decision to avoid the terrorism label was not made "out of any particular reticence." "At this point, we have to know a little more before we start to describe it as terrorist," Boucher said. John K. Naland, president of the American Foreign Service Association, said Foiey's death was a "brutal terrorist attack" and called on Congress to upgrade security at diplomats' homes and in the places where they gather outside of work. "We've always known we were a target," Naland said. "Obviously, with Sept. 11 and gearing up for possible events in Iraq, there is a heightened sense of threat.... One hundred percent safety is impossible. However, there is a lot that can be done." Foley, 60, an administrator at the U.S. Agency for International Development, was shot several times by a lone gunman as he was leaving for work. A Jordanian police official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the killing appeared to have been carried out by professionals who had followed Foley for some time. U.S. officials said Foley probably was targeted outside his home because security at ali U.S. embassies was tightened after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. It seemed to fit the pattern of other deadly attacks at so- called soft targets this year, including a church in Pakistan and a nightclub in Indonesia, Boucher said. "All over the world, we've seen this terrible practice that when we are better able to protect what you might call the hard targets... they tend to go looking for other things," Boucher said. Foley was the executive officer of the USAID mission in Jordan, Boucher said. His place in the embassy hierarchy was "fairly high, but not the top guy," the spokesman said. Foley was in Jordan helping with programs to deliver clean drinking water to poor families, U.S. Ambassador Edward W. Gnehm said. He had spent nearly 40 years in public service, starting as a Peace Corps volunteer in India in 1965. Air-crash probe focuses on tail By LESLIE MILLER Associated Press Writer' WASHINGTON — The investigation into the crash of American Airlines Flight 587 in New York last year involves many complex technical questions that can be boiled down to a simple query: What caused the tail to snap off? The Nov. 12 crash,' the second deadliest on U.S. soil, killed all 260 people on the European Airbus A300-600 and five people on the ground. The National Transportation Safety Boards four-day public hearing on the accident begins today. NTSB spokesman Ted Lopatkiewicz said the agency probably won't decide the probable cause of the crash until next year. It was the first crash of an Airbus aircraft in North America. Investigators have ruled out terrorism as a cause, as well as engine failure, fire and contact with birds. The plane crashed 103 seconds after taking off for the Dominican Republic from John E Kennedy International Airport. The jet twice ran into the wake of a Boeing 747 five miles ahead of it, according to the NTSB. The rudder began to swing back and forth violently. Seven seconds later, the tail fin, which was made of a nonmetallic composite, started to break off. The plane plunged into a residential neighborhood. It was the first time the NTSB was aware of the in-flight failure of an aircraft's major structural component made of composite materials. Investigators have learned since the accident that sharp rudder actions can put sufficient stress on the tail fin to cause it to snap off. Staying informed doesn't have to be one of your part-time jobs. "I manage a restaurant... I'm the taxi driver for two teenage kids... I've got a husband, a mother, and a dog. How do I stay informed? Like everybody else, as best I can. Why do I take time to read the public notices in my newspaper? Simple-they tell me what I need to know. Like the township is abandoning the alley behind I my house so somebody can build an office. Or the time my neighbor asked tor a permit to build a garage that would have gone six feet over our property line." V Public Notices In the newspaper and online at <OfyPublicNoticesc 0m It's how you know what you need to know. There is no better time than the holiday season to brighten up your bottom line, and our Holiday Gift Guide section gives you plenty of power. With so many choices out there, holiday shoppers will be looking for a reliable source of information and ins P ir ation.This year's section has a sleighful to offer, from features on the coolest high-tech gifts and nottest to y s to new hosting and cooking ideas for holiday entertaining. Opportunities abound for products and services like yours during this most wonderful time of the year! Our Holiday Gift Guide wiil connect you and your customers this holiday season Call I £*I H to reserve your ad space and add extra sparkle to your holiday profits PUPLISHING DATE Is FRIDAY,. NOVEMBER 15, 2002 AD DEADLINE is WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 6, 2002 Buuqhi T* ywt By Tke 9iututiui

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