Tuna Strips Recalled for Possible Salmonella

Tuna Strips Recalled for Possible SalmonellaTuna strips are being recalled for possible Salmonella poisoning. The recalled tuna stripes are part of the larger, ongoing tuna scrape recall that has sickened at least 200 people nationwide, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) announced.

Moon Fishery (India) Pvt. Ltd., is the maker of recently recalled Yellow Fin Tuna Nakaochi Scrape recalled by a United States distributor that is also recalling its 22-pound cases labeled “Tuna Strips” Product of India AA or AAA Grade.

Moon India became aware of the problem after the FDA sampled tuna strips from a lot not yet in distribution. As a cautionary measure, Moon India agreed to recall tuna strips in distribution but which were not part of the suspect lot sampled by FDA. Distribution of these AA or AAA Grade Tuna Strips Product of India is limited to four wholesalers in Georgia, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and New York.

The wholesalers may have broken the shipments into smaller lots for further distribution. The frozen raw yellow fin tuna product was originally packaged in white boxes with black writing naming the importer as Moon Marine USA Corporation—a separate and independent company—and that also identified the contents as Tuna Strips AA or AAA, Product of India. The boxes contain several vacuum-wrapped packages with no further labeling.

Distribution of the product has been suspended while the FDA and the firm continue investigating the contamination and outbreak. In the meantime, product sellers, including distributors and restaurants, are advised to consult their suppliers to determine whether the Tuna Strips from India in their possession originated from Moon India. The product may not contain lot numbers or labeling information.

At last count, 258 people have been sickened in the nationwide Salmonella sushi outbreak that spans 24 states and Washington, D.C., said MSNBC. Of those sickened, 247 have been confirmed ill with the rare Salmonella Bareilly; 11 have been confirmed sickened with Salmonella Nchanga. Thirty-two victims have been hospitalized and no deaths have been reported.

As we’ve written, according to government health officials, the outbreak involves two rare Salmonella strains. Originally only thought to involve Salmonella Bareilly, the outbreak also involves the Salmonella Nchanga infection, said the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently. The CDC noted that two genetic fingerprint patterns of the Salmonella strains have been grouped into one single outbreak strain.

The outbreak initially prompted a recall of 30 tons (58,828 pounds) of raw, frozen tuna known as Nakaochi Scrape that originated in India and was originally distributed by Moon Marine USA Corporation, also known as (AKA) MMI of Cupertino, California. Labeled as Nakaochi Scrape AA or AAA Nakaochi Scrape, the product is tuna backmeat scraped from the bones and that looks like a ground product.

The recall is complex because Salmonella Bareilly and Salmonella Nchanga are rare strains of the pathogen and, the recalled Nakaochi Scrape, although not available for individual consumer sale, is used in the making of sushi, sashimi, ceviche, and other similar dishes that are purchased from grocery stores or ordered at restaurants. Because of the vast distribution chain and that the fish is delivered frozen, it is difficult to determine to where the fish may have ultimately been delivered and if all recipients are aware that they are in possession of the contaminated Nakaochi Scrape.

To date, two women have filed a lawsuit against Moon Marine. Both are from Wisconsin—ages 22 and 33—and both were hospitalized due to a bout of Salmonellosis they contracted six-to-nine weeks prior, said MSNBC previously. The women dined separately, but at the same restaurant. Both consumed tuna rolls originally sold by Moon Marine.

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