November 2013

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency announced this week that Orange Blossom Farm is recalling Hot Dog Relish in response to a food safety investigation being conducted by CFIA. The relish was sold at St. Jacob’s Farmers’ Market in Ontario in 500 ml containers.

The public health agency announced that the recall was triggered by CFIA inspection activities, which found the relish risky because it may permit the growth of Clostridium botulinum, the bacterium that produces botulinm toxin. When ingested, the toxin causes botulism poisoning, a potentially life-threatening illness.

Botulism poisoning is rare but so dangerous that each case is considered a public health emergency. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the most frequent source of botulism is home-canned foods prepared in an unsafe manner.

Symptoms of botulism typically appear between 18 and 36 hours after a person eats contaminated food, but they can occur as early as six hours or as late as 10 days after the food is ingested. Symptoms can include nausea, vomiting, fatigue, dizziness, blurred or double vision, dry mouth, respiratory failure and paralysis. In severe cases of illness, people may die.

According to the CFIA announcement, the food safety investigation may lead to the recall of other products. CFIA is urging consumers who have the recalled product in their homes to throw it out.