According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, a frozen raw yellowfin tuna product known as Nakaochi Scrape, from Moon Marine USA Corporation is the likely source of an outbreak of Salmonella Bareilly infections.
Many of the people who became ill reported eating raw tuna in sushi as “spicy tuna,” the FDA said. Both the Food and Drug Administration and CDC claim 116 illnesses from 20 states and the District of Columbia have been reported, including 12 people who have been hospitalized.
The number of ill persons identified in each state is as follows: Alabama (2), Arkansas (1), Connecticut (5), District of Columbia (2), Florida (1), Georgia (5), Illinois (10), Louisiana (2), Maryland (11), Massachusetts (8), Mississippi (1), Missouri (2), New Jersey (7), New York (24), North Carolina (2), Pennsylvania (5), Rhode Island (5), South Carolina (3), Texas (3), Virginia (5), and Wisconsin (12).
According to MSNBC, Moon Marine USA Corp. of Cupertino, Calif., also known as MMI, is voluntarily recalling 58,828 pounds of frozen raw yellowfin tuna. It was labeled as Nakaochi Scrape AA or AAA when it was sold to grocery stores and restaurants.
Nakaochi Scrape is tuna backmeat that is scraped from the bones of tuna, and looks like raw ground tuna. Although Nakaochi Scrape is not available for sale to individual consumers, the backmeat may be used in sushi, sashimi, ceviche, and similar dishes.
The raw yellowfin tuna product may have passed through several distributors before reaching the restaurant and grocery market and may not be clearly labeled.
The CDC indicates public health and regulatory officials are visiting restaurants and grocery stores associated with ill persons and collecting information about the ingredients used in “spicy tuna” recipes.
Based on available information from 5 of the 7 restaurant or grocery store clusters about ingredients used to make “spicy tuna”, raw tuna was found to be a common ingredient among all 5 clusters.
MSNBC notes previous outbreaks of salmonella bareilly have been linked to bean sprouts, which are grown in warm, damp conditions.
“The most common symptoms of salmonella are diarrhea, abdominal cramps and fever within eight to 72 hours of eating the contaminated food. The illness can be severe or even life-threatening for infants, older people, pregnant women and people with weakened immune systems.”