March 2011

Screen shot 2011-03-31 at 8.15.34 PM.pngI did not know what it was either.

Arko Foods International of Los Angeles is recalling 8-ounce packs of Angelina Brand Smoked Roundscad. It has the potential to be contaminated with Clostridium botulinum, a bacterium that causes botulism, a life-threatening illness. Consumers are warned not to consume the product even if it does not look or smell spoiled. An undisclosed amount distributed in California, Nevada, Arizona, Utah, Washington, Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Texas, Maryland, Virginia, Florida and the Virgin Islands through retail stores, supermarkets and wholesale distributors from 2009 to January 2011.

Lakeside Foods Inc. has recalled about 3,000 cans of pickled beets sold between December 2009 and January 2011.

Some cans of the Wisconsin-based company’s 105-ounce pickled sliced beets could be under processed and may be contaminated with harmful organisms including Clostridium and botulinum.

Botulism is a potentially fatal form of food poisoning that could cause general weakness, dizziness, double vision, difficulty breathing, constipation and trouble with speaking or swallowing.

No illnesses have been reported.

D&M Smoked Fish, Inc. located in Queens, New York, is recalling Haifa brand Schmaltz Herring with the Lot # 51 and Cold Smoked Sprats Lot #54 because the product was found to be uneviscerated.

The lot for Schmaltz Herring being recalled packed in white plastic pales with salt brine and was distributed through following food retailers in the NY area on or after February 27.

R&M Supermarket- 76-05 Main Street Flushing, NY

Royal Seafood – 3100 Brighton Beach Ave, Brooklyn, NY

Ester Deli- 3664 Nostrand Ave. Brooklyn, NY

The lot for Cold Smoked Sprats being recalled is packed in bulk cases and was distributed through following food retailers in the NY area on or after February 28.

Gold Label – 281-285 Brighton Beach Ave. Brooklyn, NY

Gourmet Boutique- 36-88 Nostrand Ave. Brooklyn, NY

Ester Deli- 3664 Nostrand Ave. Brooklyn, NY

The products were sampled by a New York State Agriculture and Markets Food Inspector during a routine inspection. Analysis of the product by New York State Food Laboratory personnel confirmed the Schmaltz Herring and Cold Smoked sprats were not properly eviscerated prior to processing.

The sale of uneviscerated fish is prohibited under New York State Agriculture and Markets regulations because of Clostridium Botulinum spores are more likely to be concentrated in the viscera than any other portion of the fish. Uneviscerated fish has been linked to outbreaks of botulism poisoning.

Botulism is a serious and potentially fatal form of food poisoning, causes the following symptoms: general weakness, dizziness, double-vision and trouble with speaking or swallowing.

No illnesses have been reported to date.

jelly.jpgYesterday, March 8, 2011, The British Columbia Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC), an agency of the Provincial Health Services Authority, warned the public to avoid consuming watermelon jelly prepared by Jamnation Fine Foods due to a potential contamination with toxins produced from the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. Those toxins may cause botulism, a rare but potentially life-threatening bacterial illness. The company has also issued a recall of the product.

According to Sion Shyng, a Food Safety Specialist at BCCDC, during the summer of 2010, “The jelly was sold through the British Columbia Huntingtons Research Foundation charity booths in Duncan, and may also have been sold in other parts of province.”

Although the product was sold nearly a year ago, officials at BCCDC fear that consumers could still be holding on to it. “We’re concerned that this product may still be in the homes of consumers as jellies can be stored and consumed long after they are purchased,” said Shyng.

Dr. Eleni Galanis, Physician Epidemiologist with BCCDC, explained that “[t]his recall was prompted by a suspect case of botulism on Vancouver Island, and the subsequent investigation of foods recently consumed by the individual.”

“The signs and symptoms of botulism cover a wide spectrum,” noted Dr. Galanis. “Symptoms can begin anywhere from six hours to one week after someone has eaten food containing the toxin,” added Galanis.

In general, symptoms of botulism poisoning include nausea, vomiting, fatigue, dizziness, double vision, drooping eyelids, difficulty swallowing, slurred speech, muscle weakness, and muscle paralysis that moves progressively down the body, affecting the arms first, then the legs. In the most serious cases, botulism can also trigger paralysis of the breathing muscles, which may result in death unless respiratory assistance is provided.

The News Desk at Food Safety News reported that “[t]he BCCDC is currently working with B.C. Health Authorities and the B.C. Ministry of Health Services to ensure the recalled product is removed from distribution and is investigating any possible cases of illness.”

Even though the jelly was sold in British Columbia, products such as that are easily transported across the border. Consumers in the U.S. should also make sure that they are not in possession of and have not consumed the product.

Those who may have consumed the jelly and have symptoms compatible with botulism should call the 24-hour HealthLink BC line at 811, contact their physician, or view the BC HealthFiles on botulism online (www.bchealthguide.org/healthfiles). BCCDC is also urging consumers that if they have one of the 120 ml. jars of watermelon jelly, to discard it immediately.

For more information on Botulism please visit the BCCDC’s Botulism page.

A New York company is recalling dried fish imported from China because it may be contaminated with Clostridium botulinum spores, which can cause Botulism, a serious and potentially fatal foodborne illness.
According to a news release, W H & Group LLC of Brooklyn said that during a routine inspection, New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets food inspectors discovered, and subsequent lab analysis confirmed, that the fish was not eviscerated prior to processing.
The sale of this type of uneviscerated fish is prohibited under New York regulations because Clostridium botulinum spores are more likely to be concentrated in the viscera than any other portion of the fish. Uneviscerated fish have been linked to outbreaks of botulism poisoning.
The recalled Dried Fish comes in an unmarked cardboard box. Each fish is approximately 7-7.5 inches in length. The fish is sold in a bulk form or and may be re-packed into clear unlabeled, uncoded plastic bags. It is a product of China and was sold in New York State.