musselsThe CFIA, has announced to the public that certain batches of raw mussels may be harmful to one’s health once consumed. These particular mussels were harvested from the area of British Columbia. The raw mussels are believed to contain “paralytic shellfish toxin,” a substance that can cause serious medical conditions.

The raw mussels were harvested November 3, 2011 from BC 13, sub area 13. The mussels were processed by Walcan Seafood Limited of Heriot Bay, British Columbia. The products are described as “aqua-cultured Gallo Mussels” and are sold in 10-pound bags, with a lot code of SB174.

The affected mussels were distributed mainly to institutional customers like restaurants. The mussels were sold at retail by Daily Catch, a food retail store located in1418 Commercial Dr.,Vancouver, BC. The raw mussels were sold at the store from November 4-6, 2011. Consumers who are unsure of whether they bought the affected product are encouraged to double-check with the supplier or retailer. The product was distributed only in British Columbia.

“Paralytic shellfish toxins” are natural toxins that occasionally accumulate in oysters, scallops, cockles, clams and mussels. Whelks, shellfish that is not considered bivalve, can also collect this kind of toxin. If this substance is consumed, numbing of the lips, hands, tongue and feet may be experienced. Tingling, muscle paralysis, respiratory paralysis, and even death, can happen in as short a time as 12 hours. Currently however, there has been no health emergencies connected to the raw mussels.

The distributor of the shellfish has announced a recall for the product, while the CFIA is monitoring its effectiveness.