Man posing in the dark with a fedora hat and a trench coat, 1950s noir film style character, or a spy.

Is it a warning to others? One of the two people critically ill in a Salisbury hospital after “suspected exposure to an unknown substance” is a Russian man who was exchanged in a high-profile “spy swap” in 2010, the Guardian understands. Sergei Skripal, 66, was one of four Russians exchanged for 10 deep cover “sleeper” agents planted by Moscow in the U.S. Wiltshire police said that a man in his 60s and a woman in her 30s were found unconscious on a bench in the Maltings shopping centre in Salisbury on Sunday afternoon. Read more HERE and HERE.

PUBLIC HEALTH

Throw that dirty sponge away! Stop. Drop the sponge and step away from the microwave. That squishy cleaning apparatus is a microscopic universe, teeming with countless bacteria. Some people may think that microwaving a sponge kills its tiny residents, but they are only partly right. It may nuke the weak ones, but the strongest, smelliest and potentially pathogenic bacteria will survive. READ MORE

FOOD SAFETY

Culprit named in South African Listeria outbreak: You might say the source of South Africa’s deadly Listeria outbreak was hiding in plain sight, but it took the deaths of 180 people before the Health Minister could collect enough evidence to name the culprits. A cold, processed meat product made by South Africa’s biggest producer of consumer foods is the cause of the ongoing outbreak, which has a stunning 27 percent fatality rate. The Minister of Health on Sunday announced the source of the outbreak was two unrelated brands of “polony,” and urged consumers to stay away from all processed meat products because of the risk of cross-contamination. READ MORE

WATER SAFETY

Perdue reaches settlement with Delaware: Perdue Foods and the Delaware Dept. of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) reached an agreement to settle what the agency called multiple violations of wastewater violations at the company’s poultry plant in Georgetown, Del. DNREC found that the processing facility exceeded the effluent limits allowed by its permits between May and July 2015. The plant released excess ammonia, nitrogen and enterococcus bacteria into the Savannah Ditch, contributing to the impairment of the state’s waterways, the DNREC said in a news release. READ MORE

Hogs vs. Humans: Terry “Pap” Adams says he was out in the backyard, tinkering on one of his car projects, when another cloud of noxious pinkish-brown mist drifted overhead. The droplets hit his wife’s black car, leaving blotches with greasy little dots in the center. “You can feel it on your clothes,” he said as he stood outside his home in rural Willard, about 70 miles southeast of Fayetteville. “You could feel it, like a misting rain. But it wasn’t misting rain. It was that stuff.” The nose-curling mist was wastewater — pumped from a pond where his neighbor stores the urine and feces from thousands of hogs, and sprayed onto the fields just across a narrow ditch from Adam’s property line. READ MORE

CYBERSECURITY

Malware targets aid organizations: A newly uncovered “nation-state level” cyber espionage operation has targeted humanitarian aid organizations around the globe via the use of backdoors hidden within malicious Word documents. Dubbed Operation Honeybee based on the name of lure documents used during the attacks, the campaign has been discovered by security researchers at security company McAfee Labs after a new variant of the Syscon backdoor malware was spotted being distributed via phishing emails. READ MORE

FOOD SECURITY

Concerns about tariff: Earlier this week President Trump announced new tariffs on steel and aluminum imports. Entering into this kind of trade war could have a significant impact on farmers, analysts say. According to Brian Kuehl, executive director of Farmers for Free Trade, these tariffs are very likely to accelerate a tit-for-tat approach on trade, putting U.S. agricultural exports in the cross-hairs.READ MORE

ANIMAL FEED SAFETY

Raw pet food recalled after kitten deaths: Blue Ridge Beef of Eatonton, Ga., is recalling one lot of its frozen “Kitten Grind” raw pet food after consumer complaints, including reports of the death of two kittens. One of the kittens was confirmed to have died from Salmonella septicemia. READ MORE

Smuckers recalls canned dog foods: The FDA has posted notice of a voluntary recall by The J.M. Smucker Company Inc. of canned dog food after the company confirmed pentobarbital in tallow used to manufactured the affected products. In all, the recall covers more than 107 million cans of dog food in several flavors sold under the Gravy Train, Kibbles ’N Bits, Skippy and Ol’ Roy brands. Big Heart Pet Brands distributed the Gravy Train, Kibbles ’N Bits and Skippy dog food to retailers nationwide. Walmart Stores Inc. distributed the Ol’ Roy dog food. READ MORE

MISCELLANEOUS

The chicken as status symbol: Johan Land has a life that stands out even among Silicon Valley’s tech elite: He’s the lead product manager at Waymo (formerly known as Google’s self-driving car project), a job that keeps him glued to computer screens and fixated on the future. Land’s secret to success: relaxing with a glass of wine in the back yard alongside his wife, kids and the family’s 13 chickens and three sheep. READ MORE