April 20, 2015

Consumer Alert – Possible Botulism Contamination in “Dry Bream-Lesh (Fish)”

Consumer Alert – Possible Botulism Contamination in “Dry Bream-Lesh (Fish)”

New York State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball today warned consumers not to eat "Dry Bream-lesh (fish)” sold by Tatuka, Inc., located at 393 Ave. P in Brooklyn, New York 11223 and distributed by Royal Sweet Bakery, located at 119 49th Street in Brooklyn, New York 11232, because the product was found to be uneviscerated.

The “dry bream-lesh (fish)” was sold from retail stores to consumers in the NYC Metro area.  The product was packaged in a clear, vacuum-packed, flexible plastic pouch and offered for sale at refrigerated temperatures.  The product is coded with a “Best before: 01:08:2015” date and is a product of Russia.  (A photo of one label is attached to this release.)

Uneviscerated processed fish is prohibited under New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets’ regulations because Clostridium botulinum spores are more likely to be concentrated in the viscera than any other portion of the fish.

Because the fish is uneviscerated, the product may be contaminated with Clostridium botulinum spores, which can cause Botulism, a serious and potentially fatal food-borne illness. Symptoms of Botulism include blurred or double vision, general weakness, poor reflexes, difficulty swallowing, and respiratory paralysis.

The “dry bream-lesh (fish)” was found by New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets food inspectors during a routine inspection of the retail firm.  Subsequent analysis by New York State Food Laboratory personnel confirmed the product to be uneviscerated.

No illnesses have been reported to date in connection with the product. Consumers who have this product are advised not to eat it.