California norovirus illnesses linked to Korean oysters; Herold’s recalls seafood salads

A picture of oysters being blamed for a norovirus outbreak in California
A picture of oysters being blamed for a norovirus outbreak in California | Photo courtesy of San Diego County
2 Min

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has issued a warning to restaurants and retailers about certain raw oysters from the Republic of Korea after several people in California became ill from norovirus.

County of San Diego, California, U.S.A. health officials linked 11 confirmed and probable casesof norovirusillness to frozenoystersimported from South Korea. They said that customers who ate the oysters at 100s Seafood Grill Buffet in Mission Valley, California, on 30 March became ill and one person went to a hospital emergency department.

The FDA’s warning covers frozen, raw, half-shell oysters processed by JBR (KR 15 SP) in Tongyeongsi, South Korea, which may be labeled under the “Amazing Sea” brand. The oysters in question were distributed to retailers and restaurants in California and possibly other states.

The warning applies to Lots B231126, B240103, and B240214, harvested on 27 November 2023, 4 January 2024, and 15 February 2024; Lots B231126 and B240103, harvested from Designated Area No. 1 on 26 November 2023 and 3 January 2024, and Lot B240214 harvested from Designated Area No. 2 on 14 February 2024.

On 15 April 2024, the Republic of Korea Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries advised the JBR to voluntarily initiate a recall the affected oysters, according to the FDA.

This illnesses come four months after County of San Diego health officials linked 41 confirmed and probable cases of norovirus to raw oysters imported from a specific harvest location in Northwest Mexico

The FDA is “awaiting further information on distribution of the frozen, raw, half-shell oysters and will continue to monitor the investigation and provide assistance to state authorities as needed,” the agency said. San Diego Countys Epidemiology Program and Department of Environmental Health and Quality is leading the investigation alongside the California Department of Public Health.

Separately, Cleveland, Ohio, U.S.A. Herold’s Salads, Inc. is voluntarily recalling several of its Seafood Deli Salads due to undeclared fish allergens. The salads were sold at 13 markets in Ohio, according to the Ohio Department of Agriculture.

There have not yet been any reported illnesses as a result of consumption of the products in question to date.

The recall affects the following Herold’s Salads products :

  • Neptune Salad with a Best Before Date: April 1, 2024 to May 1, 2024
  • Shrimp and Crab Salad with a Best Before Date: April 15, 2024
  • Original Crab Dip with a Best Before Date: April 11, 2024 to April 18, 2024
  • Cajun Crab Dip with a Best Before Date: April 12, 2024 to April 26, 2024

Product may have been repackaged in a variety of sizes depending on the location of purchase, according to the release.

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