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October 29, 1999

Do not eat Quality Plus Products "Smoked Wild Sockeye Salmon"

Washington State Department of Agriculture warns product may not be stable.

OLYMPIA, WA (SafetyAlerts) - If you have any Quality Plus Products "Smoked Wild Sockeye Salmon," do not eat it - advises the Washington State Department of Agricluture.  Smoked Wild Sockeye Salmon is sold in 9 oz. jars. The product was not processed in an approved manner and is not shelf stable. The jars are labeled "refrigerate after opening," and were sold from non-refrigerated shelves.

Smoked Wild Sockeye Salmon was sold at Food Pavilion, Fair Market, Thrifty Foods and Cost Cutters in Whatcom, Island, Snohomish and Skagit counties. The product has been ordered removed from store shelves because Quality Plus Products did not obtain approval from the Department of Agriculture to produce it.

The jars have no pull dates or lot codes. The product has been on store shelves since March.

No illnesses have been reported. However, officials at the state Department of Agriculture are concerned that consumers may have the product in their refrigerators or cupboards.

Several jars of Smoked Wild Sockeye Salmon with dented or leaky lids were discovered this week by inspectors at the Whatcom County Health Department. Health Departments in Skagit, Snohomish and Island counties have been notified.

"Improperly canned foods are a common source of botulism, a toxin that can cause severe illness or even death," said Claudia Coles, food safety assistant program manager. "You can’t always see or smell botulism, so discard the smoked salmon even if it does not appear to be spoiled."

Food safety officers at Department of Agriculture are surveying stores to ensure that the Smoked Wild Sockeye Salmon has been removed from store shelves. They are working in cooperation with Whatcom County and surrounding county health officials.

Other products sold by Quality Plus Products, including pickled salmon and vacuum packaged smoked salmon, from the refrigerator case are not affected by this announcement.

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