D & M Smoked Fish, Inc., of Queens, New York, is recalling Haifa brand vacuum-packaged Schmaltz Herring, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) just announced.
The recalled fish, bearing lot number 168, is being recalled because it was found to be uneviscerated. The lot being recalled is a product of Norway, individually vacuum-packed in clear plastic pouches and a sell by date of 7/20/10 indicated on the label and distributed through food retailers in the New York area.
The Schmaltz Herring was 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 that Schmaltz Herring was improperly eviscerated prior to processing. Uneviscerated fish has been linked to outbreaks of <"http://www.yourlawyer.com/practice_areas/food_poisoning">botulism poisoning.
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.
Botulism is a serious and potentially fatal form of food poisoning and can cause life-threatening illness or death. Symptoms can include: General weakness, dizziness, double or blurred vision, drooping eyelids, slurred speech and trouble with speaking or swallowing, and dry mouth. Difficulty in breathing; weakness of other musclesâ€”for instance, muscle weakness that starts at the shoulders and moves progressively down the bodyâ€”abdominal distension, and constipation may also be common symptoms. Botulism poisoning can cause paralysis of breathing muscles, which can lead to death without treatment and respiratory ventilation in about eight percent of cases.
No illnesses have been reported, to date, in connection with this problem.
Consumers are warned not to use the product even if it does not look or smell spoiled and to return it to place of purchase. Consumers with questions may contact the company at 718-523-8899.