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Two Companies Announce Fish Recalls Over Botulism Fears

Two Companies Announce Fish Recalls Over Botulism Fears
4/11/2012 4:23 PM ET

Minnesota-based Import Foods Wholesale Inc. is recalling Smoked Croaker, Smoked Barracuda, Smoked Big Eye and Smoked Red Snapper due to fears of contamination with Clostridium botulinum spores.

The problem was announced by the Minnesota Dept. of Agriculture Laboratory personnel Tuesday who confirmed the product was not properly eviscerated prior to processing.

The sale of improperly eviscerated fish, 5 inches in length or greater, is prohibited because Clostridium botulinum spores are more likely to be concentrated in the viscera than any other portion of the fish.

The products subject to recall include:

- Smoked Croaker in a 10lb cardboard box with a code: 298/11 - Smoked Barracuda in a 10lb cardboard box with a code: 0282/011 - Smoked Big Eye in a 10lb cardboard box with a code: 287L10 - Smoked Red Snapper in a 10lb cardboard box with a code: 298-11. (All the products were made in Guyana.)

The products were sold to retail stores in Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Iowa. No illnesses have been reported to date in connection with the problem.

Evisceration of fish involves the complete removal of all internal organs (viscera) in the body cavity, including the gills. Eating salted or smoked, dried, un-eviscerated fish can result in potentially deadly botulism poisoning.

Symptoms of botulism include blurred or double vision, general weakness, poor reflexes, difficulty swallowing and respiratory paralysis which may lead to death. People experiencing these problems should seek immediate medical attention.

According to the FDA, even fillets, parts or other products derived from un-eviscerated fish, pose the same potential health hazard as the original product.

Another Minnesota-based company, Seng Ong Wholesale Inc., announced yesterday the recall of dried mackerel and dried round scad due to the same problem.

Seng Ong said the following products were being recalled:

- Pacific Isles Hasa Hasa Dried Mackerel in 48 oz. cardboard cases with lot numbers 3298 and 0760 and is a product of the Philippines. (Sold in Minnesota) - Pacific Isles Galunggong Dried Round Scad in 48 oz. cardboard cases with lot numbers 3228 and 3168 and is a product of the Philippines. (Sold in Minnesota and South Dakota)

by RTT Staff Writer

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