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Due to possible health risks, the "Deutsche See" fish manufactory in Bremerhaven has launched a recall campaign for the "Red Snapper" edible fish. For six people, eating the fish led to health problems that suggest a so-called ciguatera - a special form of food poisoning - the company reports.
In view of the symptoms, Deutsche See assumes that the cause of the diseases is the marine algae poison ciguatoxin, according to the current release. Due to possible health hazards, the goods were blocked as a precaution and taken out of the trade. According to the company, retailers have already been informed and instructed to remove the fish immediately from the service counters. In addition, consumers are encouraged not to eat fish that have already been purchased. The supplied Red Snapper was only available as loose goods at the fresh fish counters in the food retail sector, not as a packaged product, according to Deutsche See's announcement.
Red snapper contaminated with algae poison According to the information from the fish manufacturer, the "relevant veterinary authorities were informed immediately" when the first specific suspected case occurred "and further measures were taken to rule out possible health risks for consumers. The company believes that the cause of the symptoms is ciguatoxin, which is formed by tiny flagellates - so-called dinoflagellates - that live on algae and seaweed in the area of coral reefs. Fish absorb the poison when they eat the algae and this then accumulates in the food chain. Larger predatory fish, so-called reef fish, are particularly affected, reports the fish manufacturer Deutsche See. Such contamination of fish with ciguatoxin is widespread in the Caribbean, the Pacific and partly also the Indian Ocean. The red snapper now recalled came from the Indian Ocean off Sri Lanka, according to the company.
Health risk of fish poisoning In humans, ciguatoxin causes the so-called ciguatera, the most common form of fish poisoning. This particular type of food poisoning causes symptoms such as numbness of the lips and oral mucosa, diarrhea, abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting. Itchy rashes on the hands and feet can also occur during the course of the ciguatera. Muscle tension and general weakness are other possible consequences of poisoning with ciguatoxin. According to a message from the Bavarian State Office for Health and Food Safety on Wednesday there are currently suspected cases of fish poisoning from Bavaria, Schleswig-Holstein, Lower Saxony and Hamburg. (fp)
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