Food & Drink

Scombroid poisoning and what the nation’s second-largest grocery seller recalled

The Kroger supermarket chain, including Dillons, Baker’s and Gerbes stores, recalled yellowfin tuna steak sold in 16 states because they may be contaminated with scombrotoxin.

They were sold fresh packed from the seafood counter case or in wrapped, styrofoam trays with a sell by date anywhere from Aug. 29 to Sept. 14.

Friday’s recall preceded Saturday’s FDA consumer advisory that said the agency learned Wednesday about “multiple scombroid poisoning cases” of people who ate tuna steaks bought at three Kroger stores in Ohio.

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Scombroid poisoning, the FDA said, comes from eating fish that has too much histamine, usually from not being refrigerated or preserved as it should’ve been.

“Symptoms typically include facial flushing, sweating, rash, a burning or peppery taste in the mouth, diarrhea, and abdominal cramps and usually resolve within several hours without medical intervention,” the Centers for Disease Control said. “More severe symptoms (e.g., respiratory distress, swelling of the tongue and throat, and blurred vision) can occur and require medical treatment with antihistamines.”

In addition to Ohio, the recalled tuna steaks were sold in (in alphabetical order) Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Mississippi, Nebraska, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia. Consumers should return the fish to the store for a full refund.

Kroger’s directing consumer questions to Alfa International, 855-551-0118.

Since 1989, David J. Neal’s domain at the Miami Herald has expanded to include writing about Panthers (NHL and FIU), Dolphins, old school animation, food safety, fraud, naughty lawyers, bad doctors and all manner of breaking news. He drinks coladas whole. He does not work Indianapolis 500 Race Day.