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Marler Blog Providing Commentary on Food Poisoning Outbreaks & Litigation

Salmonella Tuna Scrape Illnesses Climb Over 300

TunaScrape.jpgCDC finds 316 sick in 26 States the same week that FDA announced multiple manufacturing violations at Moon Marine in India.  Questions remain why Tuna Scrape was served raw to customers.

A total of 316 individuals infected with the outbreak strains of Salmonella Bareilly or Salmonella Nchanga have been reported from 26 states and the District of Columbia. The 58 new cases are from Alabama (1), California (2), Colorado (1), Georgia (3), Illinois (4), Indiana (1), Louisiana (1), Maryland (3), Massachusetts (6), New Jersey (1), New York (10), North Carolina (6), Pennsylvania (5), Tennessee (2), Texas (3), Virginia (6), and Wisconsin (3).

051712-map.jpgThree hundred and four persons infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Bareilly have been reported from 26 states and the District of Columbia. The number of ill persons with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Bareilly identified in each state is as follows: Alabama (3), Arkansas (1), California (4), Colorado (1), Connecticut (9), District of Columbia (2), Florida (1), Georgia (13), Illinois (27), Indiana (1), Louisiana (4), Maryland (27), Massachusetts (33), Mississippi (2), Missouri (4), Nebraska (1), New Jersey (26), New York (48), North Carolina (10), Pennsylvania (25), Rhode Island (6), South Carolina (3), Tennessee (4), Texas (7), Virginia (22), Vermont (1), and Wisconsin (19).

Twelve persons infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Nchanga have been reported from 5 states. The number of ill persons with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Nchanga identified in each state is as follows: Georgia (2), New Jersey (2), New York (6), Virginia (1), and Wisconsin (1).

Among 316 persons for whom information is available, illness onset dates range from January 28 to May 3, 2012. Ill persons range in age from <1 to 86 years, with a median age of 30. Fifty-nine percent of patients are female. Among 217 persons with available information, 37 (17%) reported being hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.

The FDA Inspection at Moon Marine found that tanks used for storage of process waters have apparent visible debris, filth and microbiological contamination. Sand and activated carbon filter units used in manufacturing of water are not sanitized, and ventilation for tanks is not filtered to protect against contamination. There is no laboratory analysis for water used in ice manufacturing at the REDACTED facility to show the water used to make ice is potable. Ice manufacturing lacks sanitary controls: ice manufacturing equipment at the Moon Fishery facility is located outside and is susceptible to adulteration from pests and the environment. Apparent bird feces were observed on the ice manufacturing equipment at Moon Fishery; insects and filth were observed in and on the equipment. Ice manufacturing equipment at your REDACTED facility is rusty and situated so that the ice cannot be protected against adulteration, as the ice manufacturing process is constructed into the flooring of the ice facility. Tuna processed at your facility, which is consumed raw or cooked, comes in direct contact with water and ice.

Some of the floor and wall tiles in the tuna processing area are broken and cracked, not allowing for proper cleaning.  After cleaning, the ceiling directly above the in-process tuna line was observed to have visible product residue. After cleaning, product residues and rust were observed on knives and utensil storage boxes. These knives are used to cut raw tuna.  Peeling paint was observed directly above the in-process tuna line.  There was no hand drying devices available in the employee rest rooms on the first floor.

As disturbing as the above were the pictures posted on the FDA website that clearly should on the exterior of the boxes that Tuna Scape was supposed to be cooked, not served raw as a “sushi-like” product.

Cook Before Consumption.jpg